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Showing posts with label 2018 primary. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2018 primary. Show all posts

Sunday, February 21, 2016

What the Presidential Race Says About the Future of Maryland Politics // Through the Lens of Hillary Clinton vs. Bernie Sanders

GUEST POST - By Delegate David Moon

This year's presidential primaries have been taking place in the midst of the Annapolis legislative session. As a result, I've been far more focused on Maryland politics than the presidential race. But I've finally started tuning in to the national horserace, and I'm noticing some fascinating data points that Maryland politicos might want to consider. Indeed, without making any commentary or predictions on the presidential race itself, my thesis for Maryland is that the battle for the White House shows the impact of a recession-era (and growing millenial) electorate finally registering. Here are five emerging trends to note:

1) AMERICA'S DEMOCRATIC ELECTORATE IS NOW FIRMLY LIBERAL - I've noticed the historic wealth gap routinely discussed in the media, but we hadn't really seen the effects of this on Democrats nationally, in quite the same way the Tea Party has tilted the Republicans. It appears that is beginning to change. This clip from stands out: "Among the entrance poll numbers that help explain how Sanders became a serious threat to Clinton: 70% of Nevada's caucusgoers identified themselves as liberal. That's up from the even split in 2008 between liberals and those who called themselves moderate or conservatives. The movement mirrors the results in Iowa and New Hampshire, and make clear that the party's leftward drift is here to stay."
  • MY TAKEAWAY: It is a good time for Democrats to speak out forcefully on justice issues, and to do so with credibility. Doing so isn't a guarantee of victory in a 2018 General Election, but it seems harder for us to generate turnout from the base in Maryland, if we aren't speaking to our party's increasingly liberal instincts. At the same time, Maryland's would-be Democratic governors will have to find a way to address this "party-base" sentiment to win the nomination in 2018.

2) ESTABLISHMENT POLITICIANS ARE GOING OUT OF STYLE (THANKS TO INDEPENDENTS) - Bernie Sanders crushed Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire (where Independents can vote in either party's primary), but only came close to a tie in Nevada (where only registered Democrats can vote in the caucuses). Granted, Nevada has same-day voter registration, thereby allowing people to change parties on caucus day, but confirms Sanders' commanding lead over Clinton among these voters: he won over 70% of Nevada's Independent-minded caucus participants. Indeed, unaffiliated voters are growing at a faster rate than Democrats around the nation, including in places like Maryland. But the challenges this can pose for state Democrats are evident from this single data-point in : "If former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg jumps into the race as a third party candidate against Sanders and Donald Trump or Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, Bloomberg would hurt Sanders more than either Republican." You heard that right, a bloc of voters would prefer either Independent socialist Bernie Sanders or Independent billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg to today's Republican candidates. This is a puzzling dynamic, given the two very different views of Bloomberg and Sanders. In a lower turnout gubernatorial election, these types of voters may be the key to victory in Maryland.
  • MY TAKEAWAY: All of this means, for example, to defeat Governor Larry Hogan during his re-election race, the solution might NOT be to simply find a more moderate Democrat. A better standard might be to find a candidate who is clearly NOT a party hack. In a 2018 General Election fight, a key question for Maryland voters will be "who actually stands for me?" For various reasons, I think Hogan answered this question better than Democrats did in 2014. But as the presidential race shows, only some of this message can be conveyed by substance, as opposed to style (or lack thereof). In my own case, people often say (without flattery) that I don't dress like a politician. But maybe that's exactly my point -- and I would never run for Governor, hahaha, but I myself like to vote for candidates who seem like "real" people. We often say that authenticity matters, but rarely do I see that statement followed-up with an explanation of why. This year's presidential race provides numerous opportunities to study this question, and we would be wise to pay attention in Maryland.

3) LATENT SEXISM IS ALIVE AND WELL IN PARTS OF THE ELECTORATE - If the race ends up being Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump, Clinton's lead among women is somewhere between a tie and a 9-point margin. But the also notes, "Men vote anyone but Clinton by margins of 8 to 16 percentage points."  Yikes!  I've cautioned my Democratic friends against complacency with Clinton as our nominee, because I predict the vitriol we will see against her will be similar to what Republicans have done to Obama. So we have to choose between either a socialist candidate or a polarizing candidate to serve as the punching bag for Republican craziness. That's not an endorsement of either Sanders or Clinton, but one key lesson here is that the Democratic Party establishment should NEVER attempt to scare candidates out of these primaries.
  • MY TAKEAWAY: We should embrace an organic dialogue within the party, and let these dynamics play out. It might've been useful to have a few more candidates in the race this year, and in 2018 Maryland Democrats should not attempt to artificially narrow the gubernatorial field for a chosen establishment candidate.

4) MILLENIALS ARE OUR GENERATION'S DEPRESSION-ERA VOTERS - It is not always easy to see historical trends happening when you're standing in the middle of them, but I believe we're witnessing a shift right now. The Great Depression had a lasting impact on voters who came of age during that period, and I imagine we're seeing the same from the millenial generation. This write-up on a provides a snapshot: "Among college-aged Americans, 58 percent report a positive view of socialism and 56 percent a positive view of capitalism." While this may sound like conflicting data to many people, it actually sounds awfully similar to how Northern European social democracies work. is as follows: "Social democracy is a political ideology that supports economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of a capitalist economy, and a policy regime involving welfare state provisions, collective bargaining arrangements, regulation of the economy in the general interest, measures for income redistribution, and a commitment to representative democracy."
  • MY TAKEAWAY: In the future, Democrats should increasingly embrace a populist economic justice agenda. Today's college students who DON'T often vote will be tomorrow's 40-year-old's who DO often vote. The millenials are an emergent very large voting bloc, and voting habits form early and can last a long time.

5) THE RISE OF MELTING POT POLITICS - We've all been hearing how America is headed to a majority-minority future. But just as we're seeing in ‪Montgomery County‬, that doesn't mean that the nation is rehashing a 1960's black-white paradigm; rather we are witnessing the formation of a multi-racial electorate with large disparate blocs of races and ethnicities. Clinton is crushing Sanders among African-American voters, Sanders is supposedly leading among Latino voters, and . We see these types of political changes manifest earlier in diverse places like Maryland.
  • MY TAKEAWAY: Democratic aspirants won't be able to take these groups for granted in the future. In the past, party politicians seeking a promotion have been quick to throw certain groups under the bus. Here are a few examples -- Democratic support for deportations, pandering to dismantle welfare, voting for foreign wars (Iraq, ahem), cultural cues like the Sister Souljah incident, and of course racially disparate "tough on crime" policies like zero-tolerance, crack-cocaine disparities and the drug war. Staying on this path would be a grave error. Indeed, I was in the audience at the Netroots Nation conference last year in Phoenix when speeches by Martin O'Malley & Bernie Sanders were disrupted by #BlackLivesMatter protesters. I sat astonished as neither candidate addressed the issues raised by the activists, though all the Democratic candidates today are singing a different tune.

That's all I got. Fire away. 


QUINNIPIAC FEBRUARY 2016 POLL: Below you can see a clip from the latest Quinnipiac poll ():
Presidential matchups among American voters show:
  • Sanders over Trump 48 – 42 percent;
  • Sanders tops Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas 49 – 39 percent;
  • Sanders leads Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida 47 – 41 percent;
  • Sanders beats Bush 49 – 39 percent;
  • Sanders edges Kasich 45 – 41 percent.
  • Clinton with 44 percent to Trump’s 43 percent;
  • Cruz with 46 percent to Clinton’s 43 percent;
  • Rubio topping Clinton 48 – 41 percent;
  • Bush at 44 percent to Clinton’s 43 percent;
  • Kasich beating Clinton 47 – 39 percent.
If Bloomberg mounts a third party run, results are:
  • Sanders and Trump tied 38 – 38 percent, with 12 percent for Bloomberg;
  • Sanders tops Cruz 39 – 33 percent, with 14 percent for Bloomberg.
Sanders’ leads among key independent voters range from 45 – 35 percent over Kasich to 52 – 33 percent over Cruz. By comparison, Clinton’s best score among independent voters is 42 percent to Trump’s 40 percent.
Sanders’ leads among women range from 9 to 16 percentage points. Men are generally divided except in the Sanders-Bush matchup where the Democrat leads by 6 percentage points.

Clinton’s leads among women range from a tie to a 9-percentage point edge over Trump. Men vote anyone but Clinton by margins of 8 to 16 percentage points.

American voters give Sanders a 51 – 36 percent favorability. Kasich gets a 35 – 18 percent favorability with Rubio at a split 39 – 37 percent score. All other scores are negative:
  • 37 – 58 percent for Clinton;
  • 37 – 57 percent for Trump;
  • 36 – 45 percent for Cruz;
  • 21 – 26 percent for Bloomberg;
  • 37 – 48 percent for Bush.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

JUICE: Speaker Mike Busch Announces New Maryland House Leadership, Gansler Heads to Firm & Hogan for Public Finance?

Below Maryland Juice provides some post-election updates regarding leadership shuffles in Annapolis and more:

JUICE #1: MEET THE NEW DEMOCRATIC LEADERS IN THE HOUSE OF DELEGATES - Due to retirements and election losses, the House of Delegates was bound to go through a reshuffling of leadership and committee assignments. Speaker Mike Busch just sent out the following press release announcing some of the changes:
SPEAKER BUSCH ANNOUNCES
NEW COMMITTEE LEADERSHIP APPOINTMENTS
ANNAPOLIS, MD – House Speaker Michael E. Busch today announced his first round of leadership appointments following the 2014 general election.   Speaker Busch describes the group collectively as “the right additions to the existing House leadership team to help move us forward into the coming term.”    He adds, “We are fortunate to have such a talented group of individuals to help lead the House.”   Speaker Busch plans to announce additional leadership appointments and committee moves in the coming weeks.

Delegate Maggie McIntosh (Baltimore City, D43) will become Chairman of the Appropriations Committee.   Delegate McIntosh has chaired the Environmental Matters Committee since 2003, but served on the Appropriations Committee early on in her legislative career.  Said Speaker Busch, “Maggie McIntosh is one of the most well respected leaders in Annapolis and I have total confidence in her ability to manage the myriad of subjects that fall within the jurisdiction of the committee, most importantly legislative review and oversight of the State’s annual budget.  She is the right person to take the lead on budget issues as we continue to provide critical services to the citizens of our State and to use our resources to foster a growing economy.”  

Delegate Kumar Barve (Montgomery County, D17) will become the Chairman of the newly designated Environment & Transportation Committee (formerly Environmental Matters).   Moving forward, transportation policy issues will be consolidated within the Committee’s subject matter jurisdiction.   Delegate Barve has served as Majority Leader since 2003 and prior to that served on the House Economic Matters Committee under then-Chairman Busch.  He currently sits on the Ways and Means Committee.   Said Speaker Busch, “Delegate Barve has demonstrated time and time again his command of complex issues and he is a natural choice of someone to guide State environment and transportation policy.”  

Delegate Adrienne Jones (Baltimore County, D10) will remain Speaker Pro Tem and will now oversee State higher education policy as Chairman of the Education and Economic Development Subcommittee in the Appropriations Committee.   Delegate Jones was Busch’s first appointment as a newly elected Speaker in 2003.   Said Speaker Busch, “Delegate Jones is one of the most versatile leaders in the House.  She is a consensus builder and an extremely hard worker.  With job growth and economic development at the forefront of our agenda in the coming term, I can think of no better person to lead on policy and budget issues related to our system of higher education.”   Delegate Jones will also continue to serve as the Chairman of the Capital Budget Subcommittee.

Having served as an instrumental member of the Ways and Means Committee since 2003 and as the Chair of the Education Subcommittee since 2007, Delegate Anne R. Kaiser (Montgomery County, D14) has been appointed as the Majority Leader.  Delegate Kaiser will also maintain her roles on the Ways and Means Committee. “Anne Kaiser has worked tirelessly for the House Democratic Caucus and demonstrated leadership capabilities on crucial legislative priorities,” said Speaker Busch.

Assuming the role of Vice Chairman of the Environment and Transportation Committee will be Delegate Dana Stein (Baltimore County, D11).   Stein was first elected to the House in 2006 and serves on the Environmental Matters Committee.   Said Speaker Busch, “Delegate Stein is a thoughtful legislator whose considerable knowledge and even temperament make him an ideal choice for Vice Chairman.”

Delegate Sally Jameson (Charles County, D28) will become Vice Chairman of the Economic Matters Committee.   Delegate Jameson is a long-time member of the Committee (since 2003) and is known for her work on energy issues.   Said Speaker Busch, “Delegate Jameson brings a business background and a pragmatic approach to the important workforce and economic development issues handled in the Economic Matters Committee.”

Delegate Marvin Holmes (Prince George’s County, D23B) will become Chairman of the Joint Committee on Legislative Ethics.    Delegate Holmes has been a member of the House since 2003 and has served in a number of leadership roles.   “Delegate Holmes is a model public servant and a person of great integrity.   He is the clear choice to Chair this important committee,” said Speaker Busch.

Delegate James Proctor (Prince Georges and Charles Counties, D27A), Vice Chairman of the Appropriations Committee, will remain in that role and also assume the House Chairmanship of the Spending Affordability Committee.     The Committee plays a critical role in the budgeting process as it annually establishes State spending guidelines based on current and projected economic conditions.   Said Speaker Busch, “Delegate Proctor’s commitment to public service and his budgetary experience is unparalleled and I look forward to his continued leadership in this new role.”

# # # 

JUICE #2: ATTORNEY GENERAL DOUG GANSLER TO BECOME PARTNER AT DC LAW FIRM - Doug Gansler will wait out the next four years until the 2018 cycle as a partner at a downtown law firm. He announced the move in a press release yesterday (excerpt below):
Attorney General Doug Gansler Announces Post-Term Plans
Law firm partnership fits with AG’s extensive litigation experience

Baltimore, MD (Nov. 18, 2014) – Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler announced today that he will be joining the law firm, BuckleySandler LLP, when he completes his second term as Maryland Attorney General on January 12, 2015. AG Gansler will step into BuckleySandler as a Partner in its Washington, DC office where he will play a leading role in the firm’s government enforcement and litigation practices. The former President of the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) will also assist firm clients in complying with and managing increased regulatory expectations on issues ranging from consumer protection to cybersecurity and privacy. 

“I am extremely proud of the great things we’ve been able to accomplish during my eight years as Maryland’s Attorney General,” said Attorney General Gansler. “I will be leaving this office satisfied that our efforts made a positive impact on Maryland and across the country.”

“Joining BuckleySandler gives me the opportunity to practice law with longtime friends at one of the nation’s preeminent litigation and enforcement law firms. I am looking forward to putting those years of litigation experience to work on a regular basis.”

JUICE #3: CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORMERS SEE OPPORTUNITY IN HOGAN WIN - This week Common Cause MD and Progressive MD convened campaign finance reformers for a panel discussion in Silver Spring, MD. Speaking toward the opportunities to tackle the problem of money-in-politics were gubernatorial candidate Heather Mizeur, Congressman John Sarbanes, Montgomery Councilmember Phil Andrews, and Delegate Eric Luedtke. The packed house heard interesting commentary indicating reformers are hopeful that incoming Governor Larry Hogan (who is the first candidate to win a Governor's race with public financing) may embrace their cause:


Wednesday, November 5, 2014

AFTERMATH - So Larry Hogan's Our Governor: What Happened Down-Ballot, What's Next & What About the Purple Line?

Below Maryland Juice provides a few thoughts on last night's wild (and disappointing) election returns:

JUICE #1: WHAT HAPPENED IN MARYLAND'S DOWN-BALLOT RACES? - I have to admit, I wasn't quite expecting Larry Hogan to have a shot at winning the Governor's race (known unforced errors notwithstanding). However, I fully expected that several races down-ballot would be hotly contested in the General Election. After all, Maryland's rapidly growing Democratic electorate is geographically concentrated with some tentacles into counties like Howard & Frederick that are adjacent to Blue hotspots. When political demographics shift, wave years for political parties (like we saw this year, in 2010, and during the Newt Gingrich years) can often eliminate incumbent lawmakers who sit in districts that have become home to the opposing party. This year in Maryland was (unfortunately) no different.
The short summary is this: In the House of Delegates, Democrats are facing a net loss of 7 seats, and in the Senate, Republicans will gain 2 seats. Democrats will still hold a solid majority in both chambers. Blogger David Lublin over at : "The Democrats who lost in the General Assembly are almost all moderate or conservative Democrats.... The Democrats will be more liberal and the Republicans more conservative." Heading into the 2015 legislative session, Democrats will hold 91 seats in the House of Delegates, while Republicans will hold 50. But of the 91 Democratic lawmakers, 26% will represent Montgomery County, 25% will represent Prince George's County, and roughly 18% will represent Baltimore City. That means nearly 69% of the Democratic House Caucus will come from the "Big 3" jurisdictions.

In the State Senate, Democrats will hold 33 seats, with the Republicans holding 14. 24% of the Democrats will be from Montgomery County, 24% will represent Prince George's, and 15% will represent Baltimore City. In the upper chamber, 63% of Democrats will represent the "Big 3" jurisdictions.
Below I've noted some of the noteworthy down-ballot election results from around the state. Though it was a bad night for Democrats, some of the races below are Democratic pick-ups:

STATE SENATE CHANGES (GOP NETS 2 SEATS):
  • D6 (-1 DEM OPEN SEAT): Johnny Ray Salling (GOP) beats Johnny Olszewski Jr (DEM)
  • D29 (-1 DEM): Steve Waugh (GOP) beats incumbent Roy Dyson (DEM)
  • D34 (GOP HOLD OPEN SEAT): Bob Cassilly (GOP) beats Mary-Dulany James (DEM)

HOUSE OF DELEGATES CHANGES (GOP NETS 7 SEATS):
  • D1B (-1 DEM): Jason Buckel (GOP) beats incumbent Kevin Kelly (DEM)
  • D2B (-1 DEM): Brett Wilson (GOP) beats incumbent John Donoghue (DEM)
  • D3A (+1 DEM IN 2 OPEN SEATS): Carol Krimm & Karen Young (ALL DEM) beat Paul Smith & Victoria Wilkins (ALL GOP)
  • D6 (-3 DEM): Bob Long, Robin Grammer & Ric Metzgar (ALL GOP) beat incumbent Mike Weir & 2 Democrats
  • D29A (-1 DEM IN OPEN SEAT): Matt Morgan (GOP) beats Daniel Slade (DEM)
  • D29B (-1 DEM): Deb Ray (GOP) beats incumbent John Bohanan (DEM)
  • D31A (+1 DEM): Ned Carey (DEM) beats Terry Lynn DeGraw (GOP)
  • D34B (-1 DEM IN OPEN SEAT): Susan McComas (GOP) beats Cassandra Beverly (DEM)
  • D35A (LOSS ACCOUNTED FOR IN D34B): Kevin Bailey Hornberger (GOP) beats incumbent David Rudolph (DEM)
  • D38B (-1 DEM): Carl Anderton Jr (GOP) beats incumbent Norm Conway (DEM)
  • D34A (NO CHANGE): Incumbent Glen Glass (GOP) & Mary Ann Lisanti (DEM) win
NOTE ON DEFEATED DEMS: Del. Norm Conway is House Appropriations Chair; Del. David Rudolph is House Economic Matters Vice-Chair; Sen. Roy Dyson is Senate Education, Health & Environmental Vice-Chair. We can expect some shifting of positions due to these losses.


CONGRESS (ALL INCUMBENTS WIN RE-ELECTION): Though every member of Congress in Maryland is headed to re-election, the CD6 race between Rep. John Delaney and Dan Bongino was an interesting one. Here are the final numbers (not including absentee and provisional ballots):
  • John Delaney 89,318
  • Dan Bongino 87,152

ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY EXECUTIVE (GOP HOLD OPEN SEAT)
  • Del. Steve Schuh (GOP) beats George Johnson (DEM)
  • County Council will be 4 GOP to 3 DEM ()

BALTIMORE COUNTY EXECUTIVE (DEM HOLDS SEAT)
  • Incumbent Kevin Kamenetz (DEM) beats George Harman (GOP)
  • County Council will be 3 GOP to 4 DEM

FREDERICK COUNTY EXECUTIVE (DEM WINS FIRST EVER ELECTION)
  • Jan Gardner (DEM) beats Blaine Young (GOP)
  • County Council will be 5 GOP to 2 DEM

HOWARD COUNTY EXECUTIVE (GOP WINS OPEN SEAT)
  • Sen. Allan Kittleman (GOP) beats Courtney Watson (DEM)
  • County Council will be 1 GOP to 4 DEM

BALLOT QUESTIONS
  • MD Question 1 - "Transportation Fund Lock Box" was Approved
  • MD Question 2 - Authorization for County Executive Special Elections was Approved
  • MoCo Question A - Residency Requirement for District Councilmembers was Approved
  • PG Question J - Longer Term Limits for County Officials was Rejected

JUICE #2: WHAT HAPPENS NEXT: 2018 ELECTION TEA LEAVES - Last night Maryland Juice was watching election coverage on News Channel 8. Doug Gansler's running-mate, Jolene Ivey, was on-air talking about the election returns, and it sure sounds like Gansler might run again in 2018. Gansler has also since appeared in post-election coverage criticizing the Brown campaign (see eg: ). The other candidate in the Democratic Gubernatorial Primary, Heather Mizeur closed out the General Election with a stating, "our time will come at some future election." Let's also not forget that Congressman (with his name included) during the primary. in a list of election winners & losers (listed as a winner), with the following statement: "You may have dodged a bullet by avoiding the trap of being Maryland's lieutenant governor, historically a one-way ticket to nowhere.... See you in four years." Lastly, , who also flirted with a gubernatorial bid this cycle: "In an awful year for Democrats, Comptroller Peter Franchot actually increased his margin of victory from 2010. He ran strong where Democrats did well, and he ran strong where they didn't." Last night's election results were utterly disappointing, but I guess we'll at least have something to talk about for four years.


JUICE #3: MOVING FORWARD & THE FUTURE OF THE PURPLE LINE - I don't want to spend too much time talking about the Governor's race, but :


As noted above, I am indeed thinking about how to adjust to the reality of a Hogan administration. Of primary concern are two issues that should not be seen as partisan: 1) funding for severely overcrowded schools in Montgomery County, and 2) funding for transit projects that are near-ready to break ground, like the Purple Line. The transit-focused blog and included some of my thoughts (excerpt below):
GREATER GREATER WASHINGTON: Business groups supported Hogan because of his message of tax cuts. They also have strongly favored the Purple Line. Will they tell Hogan that it's important to them? David Moon, an organizer who once ran the Purple Line Now campaign and was just elected to the House of Delegates from the Silver Spring/Takoma Park area, said, "You're not going to be able to [win Hogan over] from a regional DC-suburban perspective, or a liberal transit versus roads perspective," or the environment (he ran against a stormwater fee calling it a "rain tax"). But if businesses are willing to stand up for infrastructure that will generate economic growth, he said, that is more compelling....
The interesting piece has generated a decent amount of commentary and debate ().


That's all I got for now....




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