HOGAN JOINS CALL FOR U.S. TO STAY IN PARIS AGREEMENT: Gov. Larry Hogan has joined a coalition of governors opposing the Trump administration’s withdrawal from the Paris Agreement, writing that “Washington continues to fail to address climate change.” Phil Davis of the Sun reports that the governor joined the U.S. Climate Alliance, a coalition of 25 governors from across the country, to oppose Trump’s withdrawal from the landmark agreement.
MFUME JOINS RACE FOR CUMMINGS’ SEAT: Flanked by dozens of supporters at Baltimore’s Reginald F. Lewis Museum, former NAACP President Kweisi Mfume announced Monday that he is running for his former 7th District seat in Congress to replace the late U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings, Luke Broadwater of the Sun is reporting.
- The first time Kweisi Mfume was elected to represent Maryland’s seventh congressional district, he was 38 years old. Now 71, he says he wants to continue the work of his one-time successor, Congressman Elijah Cummings, whose death last month left the seat vacant, Rachel Baye reports for WYPR-FM.
- If Mfume wins the special election, it’s unclear how much of his seniority he would retain from his first stint in Congress. Those rankings are important in the chamber, where veteran lawmakers tend to have more clout and better committee assignments than newcomers, Robin Bravender and Josh Kurtz report for Maryland Matters.
- The AP reported as of Friday the list of people entering or exploring jumping in to the race: Del. Talmadge Branch said Thursday he will run for the seat; state Sen. Jill Carter announced she has formed an exploratory committee to consider running for the seat; and Republican Liz Matory has filed she plans to run.
OPINION: A WALK FOR MFUME? Political pundit Barry Rascovar opines in his Political Maryland blog that the stampede is on to fill the late Elijah Cummings’ prized seat in Congress. By the time filing deadline passes late on Nov. 20, there could be a half-dozen or even a dozen “contenders” — though many will be “pretenders” on ego trips. The odds-on favorite is former Rep. Kweisi Mfume. The results may not even be close, Rascovar says, with a caveat.
POLICE WEIGHING IN ON BLUE FLAG ISSUE: A wooden American flag adorned with a thin blue line — and the object’s place on government property — has sparked an angry debate in Maryland over police-community relations, pitting elected leaders in liberal Montgomery County against Gov. Larry Hogan, Rebecca Tan and Laura Meckler of the Post report.
- Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins weighed in Monday on the controversy, questioning the patriotism of County Executive Marc Elrich after Elrich’s decision to prevent a county police precinct from displaying a wooden flag expressing support for a controversial symbol of law enforcement, Ryan Marshall of the Frederick News-Post.
- Bruce DePuyt of Maryland Matters writes that Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich said on Monday that the county did the right thing by declining to display a wooden “Thin Blue Line” flag that was given to police officers as a gift, because the symbol has taken on a controversial cast. He said Gov. Larry Hogan, who slammed the county’s decision over the weekend, should keep his focus on his own challenges.
- Jeff Hager of WMAR-TV reports the story: “I was disgusted by such an arbitrary (decision by the Montgomery County executive), if that’s the right word for it,” said Harford County Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler, “The county executive to reject such a kind and heartfelt gift from a young man towards law enforcement officers, (it’s) just inconceivable in my mind.”
OPINION: CONTAINING POLICE FLAG ISSUE: The Baltimore Sun editorial board questions how the Blue Lives Matter flag and the controversy surrounding it in Montgomery County has gotten out of hand.
MO CO DEL. LUEDTKE PUSHES FOR 12th VOTING SITE: After the Maryland Board of Elections declared last week that there will not be a 12th early voting site in Montgomery County, state Del. Eric Luedtke has drafted an emergency bill that would require an additional location. Luedtke was one of more than two dozen elected officials who endorsed an optional 12th site in White Oak, a diverse area near Silver Spring. Some residents there have complained of long lines and difficulty accessing other early voting centers, Kate Masters of Bethesda Beat reports.
B’MORE COUNCIL GIVE EARLY OK TO BAG BAN: The Baltimore City Council gave preliminary approval to a ban on retailers’ use of plastic bags Monday night, an issue that has been hotly debated for years, Liz Bowie reports for the Sun. The council voted 13-1 on the legislation, although there was a disputed last-minute amendment by the bill’s sponsor, Democratic Councilman Bill Henry of North Baltimore.
ADL HONORS CAPITAL GAZETTE, CUMMINGS: The Anti-Defamation League on Monday presented the staff of Capital Gazette and the late U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings with the Levenson Family Defender of Democracy Award. Both awards were presented at the Kay Family Dinner during the 25th annual ADL In Concert Against Hate in Washington, D.C. This honor is given annually to those who act courageously in defense of democratic values, Baltimore Sun staff is reporting.