Showing posts with label hillary clinton. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hillary clinton. 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.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

POST-HOGAN JUICE: Sen. Pinsky & Dems Decry Comcast Jab, Middle-Class Woes, Change MD, Progressive Caucus & More!

Below Maryland Juice provides a quick round-up of election analyses and discussion of life after Larry Hogan's victory in the gubernatorial race:

JUICE #1: SENATOR PAUL PINSKY & FRESHMEN HOUSE DEMOCRATS DECRY "WACKO" LABEL AND DEFEND EFFORT TO END CORPORATE TAX DODGING - Immediately after Larry Hogan's win in the Governor's race, wrote that Comcast lobbyist Sean Looney called incoming Freshmen Democrats "anti-business" and said Democrats who want to end corporate tax-dodging were "far-left wackos." The comments struck a nerve with numerous lawmakers and Looney has since apologized, but not before two response pieces from Democrats were published.

noting that ending corporate tax loopholes through a practice called "combined reporting" is anything but wacky (excerpt below):
PAUL PINSKY (VIA BALTIMORE SUN): At a Chamber of Commerce luncheon talk right after Larry Hogan's victory, Comcast lobbyist Sean Looney derisively dismissed ongoing legislative efforts in Annapolis to pass a corporate tax loophole-plugging reform known as "combined reporting."

"The far left wackos in the Democratic Party think it's a great idea," Mr. Looney told his high-powered business audience. Nearly a majority of Maryland's Senate — apparently the "far left wackos" decried by Mr. Looney — want to stop huge corporations like Comcast from charging their business expenses to their Maryland operations while shifting their profits to subsidiaries or companies incorporated in low- or no-tax states....

It seems this tax scheme is popular among the big boys doing business in our state. Our Maryland comptroller's office reports that many multi-state, multinational companies pay less in corporate tax than you and I pay in personal income tax. This tax avoidance garners these big corporations a major competitive advantage over Maryland's small businesses — and costs our state over $100 million in lost revenue annually.

We must have a good many such wackos in America today. Over half our states with corporate income taxes — 24 states in all — already have combined-reporting laws on the books. And these combined-reporting states include Texas, Utah and a host of other hotbeds of far-left wacko-ism....
Meanwhile, incoming Freshman Delegate Cory McCray of Baltimore organized a sign-on letter from 17 Democratic Delegates-elect (myself included) responding to Comcast's commentary. (excerpt below):
17 FRESHMEN DELEGATES (VIA MARYLAND REPORTER): It was with a mixture of amusement and frustration that we awoke days after our new election to the General Assembly to read that you, the lobbyist paid by Comcast to work with us, had attempted to publicly insult us and demean our ideas....

We will not use this time to debate the substance of your grievance, which seemed to be that combined reporting is a radical idea, even though numerous states (many with Republican legislatures) have passed similar legislation in recent years. We look forward to discussing the value of combined reporting, as well as any benefit Comcast receives from government programs and services, with you and your client....

Shelly Hettleman, Terri Hill, Clarence Lam, Vanessa Atterbeary, Marc Korman, Andrew Platt, Marice Morales, David Moon, William Smith, Daryl Barnes, Antonio Hayes, Charles Sydnor, Patrick Young, Cory McCray, Brooke Lierman, Diana Fennell, Jimmy Tarlau

JUICE #2: NATIONAL PUNDITS HIGHLIGHT WAGE STAGNATION AS OBSTACLE TO ECONOMIC RECOVERY & DEMOCRATS' ELECTORAL FORTUNES - Soon after Larry Hogan won Maryland's race for Governor, sweeping through the electorate. I then penned a piece calling on Maryland Democrats to prioritize measures to provide economic security for middle and working class residents, instead of joining the GOP and Big Business call for trickle-down (aka voodoo) economic measures like corporate & upper bracket tax cuts.

PAID SICK LEAVES WINS WHERE GOP BEAT DEMOCRATS: There is now a loud clamor of agreement from national pundits and economic analysts that Democrats have got to craft a strong economic populist message and start tackling our historic wealth gap. See a few examples below, starting with a case study from Massachusetts, where Republicans won control of the Governor's mansion -- at the same time that 60% of voters in the state approved a sick leave requirement at the ballot:
:  Massachusetts on Tuesday became the third state in the nation to guarantee paid sick days for workers, with voters decisively approving a sick-leave ballot initiative, 60 percent to 40 percent....

Although more employers voluntarily provide paid sick leave than they used to, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that about 39 percent of the U.S. private-sector workforce has no paid sick time. Workers without it are disproportionately employed in lower-wage jobs, such as food service and retail, where companies tend to keep a tighter grip on payroll hours....

As with raising the minimum wage, Americans in general seem to back the idea of placing a sick-leave requirement upon businesses, making such proposals good fodder for voter referendums. In a recent HuffPost/YouGov poll, 74 percent of respondents said they would support such a mandate, while just 18 percent said they would oppose it. That backing included majorities of Democrats, Republicans and independents....

WAGE STAGNATION HURT DEMOCRATIC ELECTORAL FORTUNES: The Democrats' recent electoral drubbing has pundits pointing to working class economic justice issues as the greatest challenge for the Party in coming years:
): The Democratic Party’s short-term plan to help the middle class just isn’t very clear.... The fact remains that incomes for most Americans aren’t growing very fast and haven’t been for years. Median inflation-adjusted income last year was still $2,100 lower than when President Obama took office in 2009 — and $3,600 lower than when President George W. Bush took office in 2001.... We’re living through the great wage slowdown of the 21st century, and nothing presents a larger threat to the Democrats’ electoral fortunes than that slowdown. The Democratic Party fashions itself as the defender of working families.... But if Democrats can’t deliver rising living standards, many voters aren’t going to remain loyal. They’ll skip voting or give a chance to Republicans who offer an alternative, even a vague alternative....

HILLARY CLINTON NEEDS A REAL RESPONSE TO MIDDLE-CLASS WOES: The place where we're seeing this debate become increasingly relevant is in the upcoming Democratic Primary for the 2016 Presidential Election. Hillary Clinton, , may have to sing a different tune to secure the White House:
: It won't be sufficient to run on competence, breadth of experience.... [Hillary Clinton] needs an innovative, or even bold approach... to dealing with middle-class economic stagnation and income inequality....

LOW-INCOME VOTERS CHOSE GOP OR DIDN'T VOTE: Indeed, data from the November General Election shows that these bits of advice are not just speculation, they're backed by evidence:
: Sifting through returns showing that lower-income voters either supported Republicans or did not vote, liberals argue that without a more robust message about economic fairness, the party will continue to suffer among working-class voters, particularly in the South and Midwest....

“Too many Democrats are too close to Wall Street,” said Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio. “Too many Democrats support trade agreements that outsource jobs, and too many Democrats are too willing to cut Social Security — and that’s why we lose elections.”

Mr. Brown said he had talked to over 60 Ohio Democratic leaders and activists since they were trounced in every statewide election. “The message I heard from all of them was: The Democratic Party should fight for the little guy,” he said....
Progressives pointed to three Democrats who ran as populists as models for success: Senator Al Franken of Minnesota, Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon and Senator-elect Gary Peters of Michigan.

Mr. Merkley, who focused on the loss of well-paying jobs, the cost of college tuition and opposition to trade deals that he said sent jobs overseas, won by 19 percentage points. While Democrats nationally lost whites without a college degree by 30 percentage points, Mr. Merkley narrowly carried that bloc....

Many liberals believe that the disconnect between the politics of the party’s grass roots and the message coming from Democratic administrations has left blue-collar voters unenthused. “We do not have to struggle for an agenda that connects with working-class voters,” said Representative Rosa DeLauro, Democrat of Connecticut. “We have an agenda that does that, but it does not get vocalized at the top....”

S&P ANALYSIS SAYS WEALTH GAP IS HURTING ECONOMIC RECOVERY: And while some Democrats continue to insist that economic populism is bad for business, the evidence actually points to the opposite conclusion. Indeed, trickle-down economics has never worked, and that fact has not changed today. In fact, S&P analysts seem to believe that caving to the millionaire & corporate tax cut crowd is hurting America's economic recovery and dragging down state revenues. Where is the courage?
: The widening gap between the wealthiest Americans and everyone else has been matched by a slowdown in state tax revenue, according to a report being released Monday by Standard & Poor’s.

Even as income has accelerated for the affluent, it has barely kept pace with inflation for most other people. That trend can mean a double whammy for states: The wealthy often manage to shield much of their income from taxes. And they tend to spend less of it than others do, thereby limiting sales tax revenue.

As the growth of tax revenue has slowed, states have faced tensions over whether to raise taxes or cut spending to balance their budgets as required by law. “Rising income inequality is not just a social issue,” said Gabriel Petek, the S&P credit analyst who wrote the report. “It presents a very significant set of challenges for the policymakers.”

Stagnant pay for most people has compounded the pressure on states to preserve funding for education, highways and social programs such as Medicaid. The investments in education and infrastructure also have fueled economic growth. Yet they’re at risk without a strong flow of tax revenue....
S&P’s analysis builds on a previous report this year in which it said the widening gap between the wealthiest Americans and everyone else has slowed the U.S. economy’s recovery from the Great Recession. Because consumer spending fuels about 70 percent of the economy, weak pay growth typically slows economic growth....

U.S. VOTERS BACK INFRASTRUCTURE SPENDING AT THE NOVEMBER BALLOT:  Policymakers would be short-sighted to think that Republican wins at the ballot reflect a desire to gut infrastructure spending. In fact, several states (Maryland included) had infrastructure spending measures on the ballot this November, and the message is loud and clear:
:  ...both Republican and Democratic lawmakers agree that dedicating money to infrastructure is one of the best ways to boost the economy....

Last week's midterm elections showed that the willingness to set aside money for transportation extends to the voting public. In Hawaii, California, Rhode Island, Texas, Wisconsin, and Maryland, voters approved ballot initiatives to secure funding for water resources, roads, and transit. In Texas, 81 percent of voters approved a measure to dedicate half of the state's oil and gas revenues to a state highway fund, as long as that money isn't going to tolled roads. Maryland and Wisconsin voters approved "lockbox" initiatives to make it harder to take money out of the state's transportation coffers. Rhode Island voters gave a thumbs-up to bond initiatives for infrastructure. California voters, facing one of the most severe droughts on record, gave the OK to more than $7 billion in general obligation bonds to shore up the state's water supply.
"The outcomes of these elections demonstrate that Americans value well-maintained infrastructure and are willing to make the investment," said American Society of Civil Engineers President Robert Stevens.

U.S. SENATE DEMOCRATS RESPOND TO ELECTION LOSSES BY GIVING ELIZABETH WARREN A LEADERSHIP SPOT: At the national level, U.S. Senate Democratic leaders have responded to these challenges by giving economic populists a larger say in the Democratic Caucus. They recently elevated liberal Senator Elizabeth Warren to a leadership post. Will Maryland Democrats follow suit?
:  Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) gained a leadership position in the Senate Democratic caucus Thursday, giving the prominent progressive senator a key role in shaping the party's policy priorities.

Warren's new role, which was created specifically for her, will be strategic policy adviser to the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee, helping to craft the party's policy positions and priorities. She will also serve as a liaison to progressive groups to ensure they have a voice in leadership meetings and discussions, according to a source familiar with the role....

JUICE #3: CHANGE MARYLAND? // PROGRESSIVE MARYLAND & ACTIVISTS LAUNCH CAMPAIGN TO PRIORITIZE ECONOMIC JUSTICE ISSUES - It seems clear that Maryland progressives are getting fired up after the Democrats' recent electoral losses. The message moving forward is obviously that its time for the Party to start focusing on poor and working class Marylanders. Maryland Juice recently received the following event invitation from Progressive Maryland announcing a new campaign to move this message forward (details below and at ):
LARRY STAFFORD (VIA PROGRESSIVE MARYLAND): Yesterday I came on board as the Deputy Director for Progressive Maryland. After years of progressive activism that has included work with Project Vote, the New Organizing Institute, and with Heather Mizeur's campaign for Governor, I'm looking to bring my skills and experiences to build on the successes of this great organization. With last Tuesday's results in mind, Progressive Maryland is issuing a call to action for all progressives in the state to begin organizing and mobilizing for this upcoming legislative session. .
It has become clear. The status quo in Maryland politics is no longer acceptable. Many of our elected leaders have become disconnected from the voters that they have been elected to serve. Maryland's political leadership has found its opportunities to be progressive on important social issues, but has failed to speak to the economic plight facing poor and working families in Maryland.

Conservatives win when we are not boldly and clearly articulating our message of economic justice and fairness. They repeat dishonest messages that are designed to arouse the frustrations of the neglected communities of our State. They speak boldly of the problems that face poor and working families, but offer no real solutions that will create good paying jobs that uplift our communities....

When: November 18th at 7pm
Where:  4371 Parliament Pl Lanham, MD

JUICE #4: A PROGRESSIVE DEMOCRATIC CAUCUS IN MARYLAND - As pundits continue to ponder Maryland's recent election results, one thing is clear: the Democratic Caucus is now much more progressive. Barry Rascovar recently discussed the developments at Maryland Reporter (excerpt below):
: Hardly noticed in the Nov. 4 election that saw Anthony Brown wiped out in an embarrassing avalanche of rejection was the obliteration of the Democratic Party’s moderate-conservative wing in Annapolis. Gone is Southern Maryland Sen. Roy Dyson. Gone is half-century veteran Baltimore County Sen. Norman Stone (retirement). Gone is a Howard County fixture, Sen. Jim Robey (retirement).

Also out of luck, conservative Western Maryland Del. Kevin Kelly, moderate Western Maryland Del. John Donoghue, conservative Baltimore County Dels. Mike Weir, Jimmy Malone (retirement), Steve DeBoy (retirement) and Sonny Minnick (retirement), moderate-conservative Del. Emmett Burns of Baltimore County (retirement), Eastern Shore Committee Chairman Del. Norm Conway, Cecil County Del. David Randolph, Southern Maryland Dels. John Bohanan and Johnny Wood (retirement), Harford County Del. Mary-Dulany James, and Frederick County Del. Galen Clagett (retirement).

The Democratic Party’s fulcrum in the State House now is dangerously weighted to the strident left. The party’s center-right legislators have shrunk to a handful.

It’s tough even coming up with who you’d place in that category in the House of Delegates once you get beyond House Speaker Mike Busch.  You can count less than 10 moderates still left in the Senate, including President Mike Miller — Charles County’s Mac Middleton, Frederick’s Ron Young, Anne Arundel’s John Astle and Ed DeGrange, Ocean City’s Jim Mathias, Baltimore County’s Jim Brochin and Kathy Klausmeier....
Rascovar calls this development "dangerous," but that seems like centrist spin. Believe it or not, many progressives (myself included) are outcome-oriented individuals and prioritize moving good policy over partisan politics. And while the GOP believes tax cuts will help ordinary Marylanders, progressives believe there are other was to help the middle-class. But the key commonality is that (if you take the GOP at their word), both the far right and far left are trying to help ordinary Marylanders. That may not be true of powered and institutional interests, and it presents an interesting opportunity to get things done in the future. Unfortunately, much of the pundit class is posing this question to liberal Democrats, but I think it is just as fair to pose this question to incoming GOP Governor Larry Hogan. Is he willing to play ball?

JUICE #5: MARYLAND JUICE & RED MARYLAND'S BRIAN GRIFFITHS DISCUSS THE NOVEMBER ELECTIONS AND LIFE AFTER LARRY HOGAN: Maryland Juice (aka David Moon) recently appeared on WNAV radio with our frenemy Brian Griffiths at Red Maryland. We talked about the recent election results and what the future of Maryland politics might look like with a Republican Governor. You can listen to the three-part radio interview below:

Monday, October 27, 2014

Early Vote Turnout Analysis, Hillary Clinton in MD, Brown vs. Hogan Polls, Raskin vs. Zirkin for JPR Committee Chair & More!

Below Maryland Juice provides a roundup of news and analyses of key races of interest to politicos:

JUICE #1: DUELING POLLS IN THE RACE BETWEEN ANTHONY BROWN VS. LARRY HOGAN - Maryland's top race this cycle is undoubtedly the gubernatorial match-up between Lt. Governor Anthony Brown and former Ehrlich-administration official Larry Hogan. Here is a quick round-up of recent polls in the race. Note: the Gonzalez poll below was commissioned by supporters of Larry Hogan:

  • Anthony Brown (D) - 51%
  • Larry Hogan (R) - 38%

  • Anthony Brown (D) - 49%
  • Larry Hogan (R) - 42%

  • Anthony Brown (D) - 47%
  • Larry Hogan (R) - 38%
  • Shawn Quinn (L) - 4%

  • Anthony Brown (D) - 47%
  • Larry Hogan (R) - 43%
  • Shawn Quinn (L) - 1%

JUICE #2: MARYLAND JUICE EARLY VOTE TURNOUT ANALYSIS // WHO'S BEEN VOTING? - Below Maryland Juice takes a deep dive into early vote turnout data by party, gender, and county -- and we also give breakdowns in all Montgomery County state races, a few swing districts and in key Maryland counties. Early voting is currently underway in Maryland, as voters can cast early ballots until Thursday, October 30, 2014. Polls are open from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm at early vote centers across the state. Who has been voting early in the Free State? Below you can see some of our findings from turnout data for the first three days of early voting (Thursday, Friday & Saturday).

EARLY VOTE TURNOUT BY COUNTY & PARTY: Below we take a look at early vote turnout by raw party advantage and by county turnout. Not surprisingly, Democrats are turning out at an almost 2-1 rate over Republicans, reflecting their statewide registration advantage. As a result, the top raw turnout counties are not surprising (Baltimore, Prince George's, Anne Arundel, Montgomery, etc). But in terms of the % of eligible voters casting ballots, Montgomery County is near the bottom of the state, along with Baltimore City. Though you cannot assume all Democrats will vote for Brown and all Republicans will vote for Hogan, the data reflect mixed news for Democrats. The party can try and coast on its registration advantage, but the low turnout %'s in heavy Democratic counties should be seen as a call to arms. Montgomery County is seriously lagging in % turnout (again, probably owing to the fact that the large numbers of new MoCo voters who registered over the last few years are not turning out at the polls):
2014 Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 62,765
  2. Republicans = 29,533
  3. Independents = 8,275
2010 Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 60,547
  2. Republicans = 26,146
  3. Independents = 7,508
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Top 8 Counties by Raw Turnout (First 3 Days):
  1. Baltimore County = 16,893 (3.25%)
  2. Prince George's = 14,004 (2.58%)
  3. Anne Arundel = 12,930 (3.7%)
  4. Montgomery = 11,271 (1.78%)
  5. Baltimore City = 8,413 (2.25%)
  6. Howard = 7,064 (3.62%)
  7. Harford = 6,301 (3.83%)
  8. Frederick = 3,712 (2.46%)
2014 Early Vote Turnout - All Counties Ranked by % Eligible Turnout (First 3 Days):
  1. Talbot = 1,651 (6.43%)
  2. Queen Anne's = 1,885 (5.68%)
  3. Kent = 719 (5.65%)
  4. Worcester = 1,415 (3.96%)
  5. Harford = 6,301 (3.83%)
  6. Somerset = 486 (3.74%)
  7. Anne Arundel = 12,930 (3.7%)
  8. Howard = 7,064 (3.62%)
  9. Wicomico = 1,859 (3.28%)
  10. Baltimore County = 16,893 (3.25%)
  11. Caroline = 577 (3.14%)
  12. Dorchester = 582 (2.84%)
  13. Calvert = 1,672 (2.79%)
  14. Prince George's = 14,004 (2.58%)
  15. Frederick = 3,712 (2.46%)
  16. Carroll = 2,751 (2.44%)
  17. Cecil = 1,491 (2.41%)
  18. Garrett = 460 (2.38%)
  19. Saint Mary's = 1,466 (2.27%)
  20. Baltimore City = 8,413 (2.25%)
  21. Charles = 2,069 (2.06%)
  22. Montgomery = 11,271 (1.78%)
  23. Washington = 1,279 (1.42%)
  24. Allegany = 587 (1.38%)
EARLY VOTE BY GENDER & PARTY: Below we take a look at the first three days of early vote turnout by gender and party. Statewide, women are turning out in larger numbers than men, a trend which clearly benefits Democrats. Women make up almost 60% of the Democrats early voting electorate, while men are a majority of Republican and Independent early vote turnout:
2014 Early Vote Turnout by Gender (First 3 Days):
  1. Women = 54,759
  2. Men = 46,778
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Democrats by Gender = 62,765:
  1. Democrats Female = 36,787 (58.6%)
  2. Democrats Male = 25,967 (41.1%)
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Republicans by Gender = 29,533 
  1. Republicans Female = 14,078 (47.7%)
  2. Republicans Male = 15,447 (52.3%)
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Independents by Gender = 8,275 
  1. Independents Female = 3,522 (42.6%)
  2. Independents Male = 4,747 (57.4%)
EARLY VOTE TURNOUT BY AGE AND PARTY: Below we take a look at the first three days of early vote turnout, sorted by age and party. The largest block of early voters is age 65+, with almost equal numbers of early voters from the large 45-64 demographic. In every age category, Democrats are turning out in larger numbers than Republicans. But again, you cannot assume that voters are going to vote party-line:
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Ages 18-24 = 2,363
  1. Democrats 18-24 = 1,249
  2. Republicans 18-24 = 736
  3. Independents 18-24 = 349
  4. Libertarians 18-24 = 15
  5. Greens 18-24 = 4
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Ages 25-44 = 10,775 
  1. Democrats 25-44 = 6,170
  2. Republicans 25-44 = 2,992
  3. Independents 25-44 = 1,459
  4. Libertarians 25-44 = 64
  5. Greens 25-44 = 23
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Ages 45-64 = 43,605
  1. Democrats 45-64 = 26,465
  2. Republicans 45-64 = 13,057
  3. Independents 45-64 = 3,668
  4. Libertarians 45-64 = 75
  5. Greens 25-44 = 55
2014 Early Vote Turnout - Ages 65+ = 44,794 
  1. Democrats 65+ = 28,881
  2. Republicans 65+ = 12,748
  3. Independents 65+ = 2,799
  4. Libertarians 65+ = 36
  5. Greens 65+ = 14
EARLY VOTE BY PARTY IN THE TOP 8 TURNOUT COUNTIES: Below we take a look at early vote turnout in the top 8 highest turnout counties. In 7 of 8 of these counties, Democrats are turning out in much higher numbers than Republicans. In Harford County, Republicans have a slight edge of roughly 300 votes over the Democrats. Though you can't quite assume that all Democrats will vote for their County Executive candidates, the county-level turnout may be reassuring news for Democrats in some of the competitive County Exec races. Some of the turnout numbers are tight enough to warrant extra energy from Dems:
Anne Arundel Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 6,169
  2. Republicans = 5,282
  3. Independents = 1,433
Baltimore City Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 7,636
  2. Republicans = 417
  3. Independents = 326
Baltimore County Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 11,259
  2. Republicans = 4,334
  3. Independents = 1,090
Frederick County Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 1,698
  2. Republicans = 1,538
  3. Independents = 460
Harford County Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Republicans = 2,967
  2. Democrats = 2,657
  3. Independents = 602
Howard County Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 4,167
  2. Republicans = 2,035
  3. Independents = 775
Montgomery County Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 7,909
  2. Republicans = 1,962
  3. Independents = 1,295
Prince George's County Early Vote Turnout by Party (First 3 Days):
  1. Democrats = 12,443
  2. Republicans = 878
  3. Independents = 507
EARLY VOTE TURNOUT IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY DELEGATE RACES: In all 8 of Montgomery County's House of Delegate Districts, Democrats are turning out in far greater numbers than Republicans. My home District 20 has the highest Democratic turnout in MoCo, and here Independents are tied with Republicans for turnout. Meanwhile District 14 has the highest overall turnout (counting all parties):
Maryland House District 14 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,953 Total Votes
  1. Democrats = 1,258
  2. Republicans = 472
  3. Independents = 317
  4. Libertarians = 3
  5. Greens = 0
Maryland House District 15 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,161 Total Votes 
  1. Democrats = 709
  2. Republicans = 275
  3. Independents = 163
  4. Libertarians = 5
  5. Greens = 1
Maryland House District 16 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,092 Total Votes 
  1. Democrats = 796
  2. Republicans = 171
  3. Independents = 119
  4. Libertarians = 2
  5. Greens = 0
Maryland House District 17 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,242 Total Votes 
  1. Democrats = 835
  2. Republicans = 234
  3. Independents = 161
  4. Libertarians = 2
  5. Greens = 2
Maryland House District 18 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,335 Total Votes 
  1. Democrats = 999
  2. Republicans = 182
  3. Independents = 136
  4. Greens = 6
  5. Libertarians = 0
Maryland House District 19 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,676 Total Votes 
  1. Democrats = 1,220
  2. Republicans = 257
  3. Independents = 183
  4. Greens = 4
  5. Libertarians = 3
Maryland House District 20 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,741 Total Votes 
  1. Democrats = 1,425
  2. Republicans = 148
  3. Independents = 148
  4. Greens = 7
  5. Libertarians = 3
Maryland House District 39 Early Vote Turnout by Party = 1,070 Total Votes 
  1. Democrats = 666
  2. Republicans = 222
  3. Independents = 170
  4. Libertarians = 3
  5. Greens = 1
EARLY VOTE TURNOUT IN A FEW SWING RACES: Below we provide early vote turnout figures and party breakdowns in a few key races on the November ballot. Democratic turnout from the first three days of early voting looks okay across the board, but there are a couple districts where the party needs to turn up the heat!

Senate District 3 Early Vote Turnout by Party (Ron Young vs. Corey Stottlemyer) 
  1. Democrats = 1,091
  2. Republicans = 719
  3. Independents = 246
Senate District 42 Early Vote Turnout by Party (Jim Brochin vs. Tim Robinson)
  1. Democrats = 1,062
  2. Republicans = 683
  3. Independents = 153
Delegate District 9B Early Vote Turnout by Party (Tom Coale vs. Bob Flanagan) 
  1. Democrats = 742
  2. Republicans = 506
  3. Independents = 158
Delegate District 12 (Eric Ebersole/Terri Hill/Clarence Lam vs. Gordon Bull/Joe Hooe/Rick Martel)
  1. Democrats = 1,773
  2. Republicans = 566
  3. Independents = 220
Delegate District 29B (John Bohanan vs. Deb Rey)
  1. Democrats = 190
  2. Republicans = 158
  3. Independents = 40
Delegate District 30A Early Vote Turnout by Party (Mike Busch/Chuck Ferrar vs. Herb McMillan/Genevieve Lindner)
  1. Democrats = 1,384
  2. Republicans = 839
  3. Independents = 257
Delegate District 38B Early Vote Turnout by Party (Norm Conway vs. Carl Anderton Jr) 
  1. Democrats = 430
  2. Republicans = 388
  3. Independents = 85

JUICE #3: NATIONAL PARTIES NOW SPENDING IN MARYLAND // PLUS: OBAMA, CHRIS CHRISTIE & THE CLINTONS CAMPAIGN IN MD - As we head into the homestretch for Maryland's gubernatorial race, the national Democrats & Republicans are engaging in a proxy battle in the Free State. Here are a few signs of activity from national politicians:
HILLARY CLINTON TO RALLY FOR ANTHONY BROWN THIS THURSDAY: So far Lt. Governor Anthony Brown's campaign has brought President Obama and former President Bill Clinton onto the campaign trail in Maryland. This Thursday, they are continuing the proxy battle with a rally with Hillary Clinton (press release excerpt below). You can RSVP at:

This event is free – supporters will be admitted on a first come, first served basis. Space is limited and supporters must RSVP at www.anthonybrown.com/Oct30, or pick up tickets at a Democratic office listed here: www.anthonybrown.com/offices.

Who: Hillary Rodham Clinton, Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, County Executive Ken Ulman, and the Maryland Democratic Team

What: Early Vote event – Final push before polls close at 8 p.m. (Nearest Early Vote location is the College Park Community Center at 5051 Pierce Avenue, College Park, MD)

When: Thursday, October 30th, Doors open to the public at 2:45 pm

Where: University of Maryland College Park, Ritchie Coliseum, 4533 Rossborough Lane, College 
Hillary Clinton's visit comes on the heels of an Anthony Brown rally with President Obama (see ) and a fundraiser with President Bill Clinton (see ). Meanwhile, Larry Hogan has enlisted New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (see ) to campaign for him in the Free State.

NATIONAL PARTY TV AD WARS: Meanwhile, the Democratic Governor's Association (aka DGA) has now spent at least $1.15 million in deep Blue Maryland to shore up the Brown campaign. (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON POST: The DGA previously spent about $750,000 on three weeks of ads in the Baltimore market that attack Hogan’s record on social issues, including his past opposition to abortion rights.... The latest DGA outlay in the heavily Democratic state will keep ads on the air on Baltimore stations through mid-October. The purchase appears to be roughly $400,000, based on publicly available records and people familiar with the buy....
To counter the DGA, the Republican Governor's Association (aka the RGA) has bought airtime in Maryland. (excerpt below):
BALTIMORE SUN: The RGA's intervention in the race in deep-blue Maryland reflects a growing hope in GOP circles that Hogan can score an upset despite the state's 2-1 Democratic registration advantage. The RGA's chairman, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, campaigned and raised funds for Hogan this week on his second visit to Maryland on Hogan's behalf. lRelated Distortions fly in race for governor POLITICS Distortions fly in race for governor SEE ALL RELATED 8 According to filings with the Federal Communication Commission, the RGA will spend $166,515 to advertise on WJZ-TV. The ad the group released Thursday is a 30-second spot rattling off taxes, fares and other charges that have gone up under Brown and Gov. Martin O'Malley....

JUICE #4: SENATORS RASKIN & ZIRKIN BATTLING FOR CHAIR OF JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS COMMITTEE - One of the non-election stories politicos are currently following is the battle between State Senators Jamie Raskin & Bobby Zirkin for Chair of the Judicial Proceedings Committee. After all, not all of the hot races this year are electoral battles -- some of them relate to the assignment of leadership posts. This November, State Senator Brian Frosh is all but certain to be elected Maryland's next Attorney General, but Frosh also chairs the Senate's Judicial Proceedings Committee (aka JPR). With his looming departure from that post, Senate President Mike Miller will soon have to choose a replacement. (excerpt below):
JOSH KURTZ VIA CENTER MARYLAND: At first glance – and maybe even at second and third glance – it’s a no-brainer: A Harvard-educated constitutional scholar vs. a guy who advertises his ability to win dog bite cases prominently on his law firm website. Put another way, it’s a choice between a lawyer who wrote a best-selling book about the Supreme Court and a lawmaker who introduced a bill that would have prevented the wife of an Annapolis lobbyist from serving on the Baltimore County school board because the lawmaker didn’t like a natural gas pipeline project in his neighborhood that the lobbyist’s firm was promoting....

By all accounts, the battle is between Montgomery County Sen. Jamie Raskin (D), an American University law professor and constitutional scholar, and Baltimore County Sen. Bobby Zirkin (D), the trial lawyer and pipeline foe. But [Senate President Mike] Miller’s decision isn’t as easy as one might expect given the two contenders’ credentials, because this is not an academic exercise – and the chairmanship of JPR is anything but an academic position. In fact, it’s become a major dilemma for Miller, the longest-serving Senate president on Planet Earth who once held the JPR gavel himself....
WILL MOCO & LIBERALS HAVE A ROLE IN THE STATE SENATE? - But there is much more to the JPR battle than just the resumes of Senators Raskin & Zirkin. The decision has much to do with the trajectory of the chamber, and Montgomery County's role in the future of the State Senate. With the exit of Senator Brian Frosh and the retirement of former Majority Leader Rob Garagiola, Montgomery County may soon be without any Senator in a senior leadership position in the state's upper chamber.

Moreover, with the ever-increasing liberal bent to Maryland's Democratic electorate, the JPR battle foreshadows whether progressives in the State Senate will be given a correspondingly larger voice in the body. On this point, there are some similarities and some differences in voting record between Raskin & Zirkin. Most notably, Zirkin voted against the Dream Act while Raskin supported the bill. The two Senators also disagree on whether landlords should be able to discriminate against tenants based on the form of payment for rent (eg: housing vouchers for veterans and low income residents). Raskin opposes discrimination against form of payment, while Zirkin supports it.

That being said, both Senators voted for marriage equality and both support marijuana legalization. Both Senators also voted against corporate welfare for Lockheed Martin, and Zirkin ultimately joined Raskin in supporting death penalty repeal and transgender non-discrimination. In any case, we will likely not know how this story plays out until after the General Election is concluded.

JUICE #5: LOW PROFILE BALLOT QUESTIONS FACING VOTERS IN NOVEMBER // TRANSPORTATION LOCK BOX, COUNTY EXEC SPECIAL ELECTIONS & MORE - In addition to the state and county races on the ballot this year, there are some fairly interesting (albeit low-profile) ballot questions facing voters. We discuss the two statewide ballot questions and a Montgomery County-specific ballot question below:
QUESTION 1: SHOULD MARYLAND LOCK-BOX ITS TRANSPORTATION FUNDS? - This ballot question asks voters whether state lawmakers should be prohibited from spending transportation dollars on non-transportation budget items. The measure was placed on the ballot by the General Assembly as part of the gas tax negotiations during the last legislative session. The lockbox on the transportation trust fund dollars could be overturned through at 60% vote of the legislature during a fiscal emergency. including the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee, Progressive Neighbors, The Baltimore Sun, The Gazette, various Chambers of Commerce, the carpenters union and supporters of the Red Line, Purple Line and CCT.
QUESTION 2: SHOULD MARYLAND ALLOW COUNTIES TO FILL COUNTY EXEC VACANCIES THROUGH SPECIAL ELECTIONS? - This ballot question asks voters whether Maryland should authorize counties to fill vacancies in the office of County Executive through special elections instead of appointments. In Montgomery County, for example, a County Exec vacancy would currently be filled through a vote of five members of the County Council. A vote "for" Question 2 is a vote to allow counties to use special elections and is recommended by the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee and Progressive Neighbors.
MOCO QUESTION A: SHOULD MOCO REQUIRE COUNCILMEMBERS TO LIVE IN THEIR DISTRICT AT THE TIME OF A PRIMARY, GENERAL & VACANCY? - This ballot question asks voters in Montgomery County whether candidates for District-based County Council seats must reside in their district at the time of a Primary Election and General Election or at the time a vacancy occurs. A vote "for" Question A is a vote to require residency and is recommended by the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee and Progressive Neighbors.

JUICE #6: MONTGOMERY COUNTY APPROVES PUBLIC FINANCING FOR COUNTY RACES STARTING IN THE 2018 CYCLE - One major game-changer to local politics is that Montgomery County Councilmembers recently voted unanimously to adopt a "clean elections" public financing system for county races. (excerpt below):
MONTGOMERY COUNTY COUNCIL: The Montgomery County Council today unanimously enacted Bill 16-14, which will allow candidates for County Council and County Executive to qualify for partial public financing for their campaigns. This is the first measure of its type for County elective offices in the Washington Region and in the State of Maryland.... The bill would establish a Public Election Fund. To qualify for public financing, a candidate would have to:
  • File a Notice of Intent prior to collecting qualifying contributions
  • Establish a publicly funded campaign account
  • Only accept contributions from an individual of between $5 and $150
  • Refuse to accept a contribution from any group or organization, including a political action committee, a corporation, a labor organization or a State or local central action committee of a political party
  • Collect a qualifying number of contributions from County residents: 500 for County Executive candidates, 250 for at-large Council candidates and 125 for district Council candidates
  • Meet qualifying dollar thresholds of $40,000 for County Executive, $20,000 for at-large Councilmember and $10,000 for district CouncilmemberLimits are indexed to inflation
  • Only contributions from County residents are eligible for matching funds
The plan provides strong incentives for candidates to seek out many small individual contributors. Matching public dollars for County Executive candidates would be $6 for each dollar of the first $50 of a qualifying contribution received from a County resident, $4 for each dollar for the second $50 and $2 for each remaining dollar received up to the maximum contribution. Matching dollars for County Council candidates would be $4 for each dollar of the first $50 received from a County resident, $3 for each dollar for the second $50 and $2 for each remaining dollar received up to the maximum contribution.

The maximum limit on public funds per candidate for either the primary election or the general election will be $750,000 for a County Executive candidate, $250,000 for a Council at-large candidate and $125,000 for a district Council candidate. Matching dollars would not be distributed for self/spouse contributions or to candidates running unopposed.
Advocates are hopeful that the "clean elections" push will soon spread to other states and hopefully be adopted for state elections in coming years.

That's it until next time!

Monday, January 13, 2014

JUICE: Delaney Polling for Governor?, Van Hollen on Hillary's Hit List, O'Malley for $10/Hr Wage, Updates on Gov Race & More

Below Maryland Juice provides a round-up of news of interest to politicos:

JUICE #1: IS CONGRESSMAN JOHN DELANEY POLLING MARYLAND GOVERNOR & US SENATE RACES? - UPDATE: Maryland Juice received the following anonymous response from a source denying that the poll below involved the U.S. Senate race: "I have it on very good authority that Congressman Delaney has not been polling on Senator Mikulski in any way whatsoever. I'd prefer to not be attributed with this update, but wanted to pass the message along to you based on this morning's post."

Over the last week, Maryland Juice sources and readers have been mentioning a mysterious statewide poll surveying opinion about the 2014 Governor's race and U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski. Notably, the poll appears to weigh the status of Congressman John Delaney in both contests. Below you can see some messages we received on Facebook and Twitter regarding the poll. We received the following :
PATRICK ALLEN: January 5, 2014 - John Delaney push polls began today in an effort for Mr. Delaney to assess his future political aspirations and / or opportunities. Mr. Delaney currently represents the Maryland 6th Congressional District.

The polling is being conducted by Mountain West Research, based in Pocatello, Idaho, using satellite telemarketers located in Armada, Michigan (1-586-625-1581). This firm is generally known as a telemarketing firm and has a number of complaints filed against it.

It is important to note that the pollsters are asking a number of Gubernatorial questions regarding Mr. Delaney as well as a series of negative questions related to Senator Barbara Mikulski.

One can imagine that Mr. Delaney's Republican-styled legislative experience during his first term as a congressman has him a bit worried regarding his chances of re-election.
After Maryland Juice mentioned rumors of the poll on Twitter, , the Executive Director of Maryland's League of Conservation Voters:
KARLA RAETTIG: I can confirm. I was lucky enough to get a call Thursday night. It was pretty interesting.... Just want to clarify that it was clearly Delaney's poll and not a decoy.
Today (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON POST: Is Rep. John K. Delaney (D-Md.) thinking about running for governor of Maryland? There’s at least some circumstantial evidence. A telephone poll has been conducted in recent days that includes the names of Democrats who’ve already announced they’re running for governor — along with that of Delaney, the freshman congressman....

Karla Raettig, executive director of the Maryland League of Conservation Voters, happened to be among those who got called as part of the poll. Raettig said she was interviewed Thursday and surprised to hear one of the choices offered for governor.... Raettig said the poll did not identify its sponsor. It included questions about negative aspects of the candidacies of Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown (D) and Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler (D), Raettig said....

JUICE #2: REP. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN ON HILLARY CLINTON'S HIT LIST? - One of Congress's insider newspapers, The Hill, released an interesting report this week that staff for a perceived betrayal during her 2008 presidential campaign (excerpt below):
THE HILL: A longtime adviser to Hillary Clinton played down the importance of a list drawn up by campaign aides that noted the lawmakers and superdelegates who staffers believed had betrayed the former presidential candidate during the 2008 Democratic primary.

Among those named on the list, and earning the most negative rating from Clinton loyalists under a points system they devised, were Secretary of State John Kerry, the late Edward Kennedy, and a number of other prominent Democrats including Sens. Claire McCaskill (Mo.), Jay Rockefeller (W.Va), Bob Casey (Pa.) and Patrick Leahy (Vt.), and Rep. Chris Van Hollen (Md.).... The list, sources tell the authors, was sent to Doug Band, who at the time served as aide de camp to former President Bill Clinton....

JUICE #3: GOV. MARTIN O'MALLEY SUPPORTING $10/HOUR MINIMUM WAGE HIKE IN MARYLAND - that Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley appears to be getting behind a $10 an hour minimum wage increase (excerpt below):
WTOP: Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley is calling for an increase in the state's minimum wage to at least $10 per hour. In an interview Sunday with CNN's "State of the Union", O'Malley said that if the minimum wage had only kept pace with inflation since 1968, it would be a little more than $10 per hour now. He says it would be $20 per hour if the wage had kept pace with productivity....
Correspondingly, O'Malley is now scheduled to speak at an . Progressive Maryland circulated the following event announcement (excerpt below):
PROGRESSIVE MARYLAND:  TUES. Stand with working families, PM, allies, leaders in Annapolis to Rally with Gov. O'Malley to 'Raise the Minimum Wage, Raise Maryland!'

Tuesday, Jan. 14th, 5:45 p.m. at Lawyers Mall, State Circle before the State House, Annapolis
  • Raise the minimum wage to $10.10
  • Index it to the cost of living
  • Boost the pay of tipped workers from 50 to 70% of the prevailing wage
More than 500,000 Maryland workers will get a raise, boosting our state's economy for all.

JUICE #4: DOUG GANSLER CALLS FOR PRESS CONFERENCE AS REPORTS REVEAL MD OFFICIALS WERE WARNED ABOUT OBAMACARE ENROLLMENT PROBLEMS - that Maryland officials were warned for at least a year about potential problems with the state's Obamacare enrollment platform (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON POST: More than a year before Maryland launched its health insurance exchange, senior state officials failed to heed warnings that no one was ultimately accountable for the $170 million project and that the state lacked a plausible plan for how it would be ready by Oct. 1.

Over the following months, as political leaders continued to proclaim that the state’s exchange would be a national model, the system went through three different project managers, the feuding between contractors hired to build the online exchange devolved into lawsuits, and key people quit, including a top information technology official because, as he would later say, the project “was a disaster waiting to happen.”

The repeated warnings culminated days before the launch, with one from contractors testing the Web site that said it was “extremely unstable” and another from an outside consultant that urged state officials not to let residents enroll in health plans because there was “no clear picture” of what would happen when the exchange would turn on.

Within moments of its launch at noon Oct. 1, the Web site crashed in a calamitous debut that was supposed to be a crowning moment for Maryland officials who had embraced President Obama’s Affordable Care Act and pledged to build a state-run exchange that would be unparalleled.

Instead, by the next morning only four people had signed up using the Web site — and amazed that anyone had gotten through the system successfully, state officials contacted each of them to make sure they were real. The site’s problems continue to prevent Marylanders from signing up for health insurance. As of Friday, 20,358 people had selected private plans, and state officials have said they do not expect to come close to their initial goal of 150,000 by the end of March....
In response to The Washington Post expose, Attorney General Doug Gansler's campaign has announced a press conference today:

Doug Gansler to Hold Press Conference Today, Will Address Revelations About State’s Disastrous Health Exchange Rollout

Silver Spring, MARYLAND – Democratic gubernatorial candidate Attorney General Douglas Gansler and his lieutenant governor candidate Delegate Jolene Ivey will hold a press conference Monday afternoon to address recent revelations in the media about the role of Lt. Governor Anthony Brown in mismanaging the rollout of Maryland’s health exchange.

WHAT:  Press conference with Democratic gubernatorial candidate Doug Gansler and his lieutenant governor candidate Jolene Ivey

WHEN:  Monday, January 13, 2014 at 3 p.m.                

WHERE: Gansler / Ivey Campaign HQ , 1300 Spring Street , Silver Spring, Md.


JUICE #5: DOUG GANSLER SAYS EQUALITY MARYLAND TRADED ENDORSEMENT OF ANTHONY BROWN FOR TRANSGENDER NON-DISCRIMINATION BILL - that Attorney General Doug Gansler believes Equality Maryland (an LGBT rights group) traded an endorsement of Lt. Governor Anthony Brown for support for a stalled transgender non-discrimination bill (excerpt below):
WASHINGTON BLADE: Attorney General Doug Gansler told the Washington Blade last week that Equality Maryland “traded” its endorsement of Lieutenant Gov. Anthony Brown for governor for his support of a bill that would ban discrimination against transgender Marylanders.

Gansler told the Blade during a Jan. 10 telephone interview that Brown should “honor” the Equality Maryland endorsement by making the trans rights measure an administration bill as Gov. Martin O’Malley did in 2012 when he designated the same-sex marriage bill a legislative priority.... “That would be sort of putting his money where his mouth is,” said Gansler. “If it’s not an administration bill, I just don’t know....”

JUICE #6: FEMINIST MAJORITY ENDORSES HEATHER MIZEUR FOR GOVERNOR - that Delegate Heather Mizeur has received the endorsement of the Feminist Majority in her bid for Governor (excerpt below):
MS MAGAZINE: The Feminist Majority announced today its support for Del. Heather Mizeur in her bid to become governor of Maryland. Mizeur is an established state leader who fights for women's and human rights, health care access and education. If elected, Mizeur will become Maryland's first woman governor and the first openly gay governor in the nation....

"Maryland has a chance to make history by electing Heather Mizeur," said Feminist Majority President Eleanor Smeal. "I am extremely impressed with Heather's leadership in the General Assembly. If elected as governor, she will surely win advancements for Maryland's women, working families, young people and members of the LGBT community...."

Mizeur, in addition to Feminist Majority, has been endorsed by EMILY's List, Maryland NOW, National NOW and Women's Campaign Fund.

JUICE #7: MCGEO DISCUSSES UPCOMING ELECTION FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY DEMOCRATIC CENTRAL COMMITTEE - A Maryland Juice reader flagged the following (the union representing many Montgomery County government employees). In the following piece in MCGEO's latest newsletter, Stewart discusses the forthcoming Democratic Primary race for members of the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee (excerpt below):
BOB STEWART: In May 2013, we joined our brothers and sisters in the  FOP, the IAFF, the Metro-Washington Council of the AFL-CIO, and the Montgomery County Young Democrats in calling for a boycott and picket of the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee’s Spring Ball. Beyond our dissatisfaction with the Committee’s role in eliminating effects bargaining for the County police, we felt that the party had strayed from  core democratic values especially its support for economic fairness and social justice for our most vulnerable citizens.

Fast forward to now, and you can see that our boycott had a tangible effect on the MCDCC and the choices it’s making in moving forward. An article in Bethesda Magazine says that the Committee is trying to produce a “unity slate” to fill upcoming vacancies on the Committee “who are palatable to local labor groups....”

Whether the MCDCC moves back to progressivism remains to be seen, but we are optimistic about these developments. We are happy to see that Dave Kunes, president of the Montgomery County Young Democrats, will likely play a huge role on the Committee. However, if the Committee doesn’t produce a slate that represents our issues we are ready to move forward with our own candidates....

JUICE #8: D29A DELEGATE JOHN WOOD RETIRING  //  PLUS: DEL. STEVE DEBOY RE-CONFIRMS HIS RETIREMENT DECISION - that Democratic Delegate John Wood of District 29A is retiring. The article also notes that Delegate Steve DeBoy has re-confirmed his retirement from the Maryland House of Delegates (excerpt below):
MARYLAND REPORTER:  “I’ve had enough,” Del. Johnny Wood told his colleagues in the legislature last week, confirming he would not seek reelection after seven terms in the House of Delegates.... In a way, it’s the legislature that has moved on over three decades, and left Wood a dinosaur among Democrats. Conservative Democrats were plentiful in the House when Wood arrived the same year as House Speaker Michael Busch. But over the years, the Democrats have moved to the left and Wood has found himself one of the few Democrats voting with Republicans on many fiscal, business and social issues....
Another conservative-leaning Democrat, [Del. Steve DeBoy] has been rumored to be reconsidering that move, but Friday he said he did not know who had started that rumor and he was sticking to his decision to leave the House of Delegates....

JUICE #9: D46 SEN. BILL FERGUSON AND DELEGATES PETE HAMMEN & LUKE CLIPPINGER FORM SLATE WITH BROOKE LIERMAN - Maryland Juice received the following press release announcing that District 46 Democratic state legislators have formed a slate with newcomer Brooke Lierman (a high school classmate of Maryland Juice):


Brooke Lierman joins Senator Bill Ferguson, Delegates Pete Hammen and Luke Clippinger as a candidate on the 46th District Democratic slate

BALTIMORE – Brooke Lierman, Fell’s Point resident and civil rights attorney, today announced that she is joining the Democratic ticket with incumbent State Senator Bill Ferguson and State Delegates Pete Hammen and Luke Clippinger. Brooke, a mother and community activist, is running as a Democrat.

“As a mother, community activist, and attorney, I have worked in the neighborhoods of our district to build a better City. I'm running for State Delegate to continue that work by making sure that Baltimore families and communities have a strong voice representing them in the State Legislature,” Brooke said. “I know that Bill, Pete and Luke share my commitment to Baltimore communities and families around the 46th District, and I am excited to be on a ticket with them.”

Brooke has been endorsed by former State Senator Perry Sfikas, former State Delegate Carolyn Krysiak, Councilman Ed Reisinger, and Congressman Elijah Cummings (D-Md.).

“I’m thrilled to have Brooke Lierman join the Democratic ticket for the 46th District,” said Senator Ferguson, who has represented the district since 2011. "Since she launched her candidacy, Brooke has worked tirelessly to get to know the voters in our district. She has proven, time and time again, how dedicated she is to our neighbors and all the residents of Baltimore. Pete, Luke and I are thrilled to welcome her to our team.”

Brooke is civil rights attorney with the Baltimore firm Brown, Goldstein and Levy, where she represents low-wage workers and disabled individuals in wage theft and civil rights abuse cases.  Brooke also provides pro bono representation to homeless individuals and to neighborhood groups advocating in front of the Liquor Board to close dangerous bars. She serves on the boards of the Downtown Baltimore Family Alliance, and the Citizens Planning & Housing Association.

Brooke is a resident of the Fell’s Point neighborhood, where she lives with her husband and young son.

The 46th legislative district represents Southeast, South and downtown Baltimore, as well as the Middle Branch neighborhoods. For more information about Brooke and her campaign, visit .
# # #

JUICE #10:  REP. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN'S HELP NEEDED TO STOP THE "TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP," A SECRET BIG-BUSINESS TRADE DEAL - that President Obama is working with U.S. House Republicans on passing a secret trade deal that aids big businesses over ordinary consumers. Advocates I've spoken to about the "Trans-Pacific Partnership" (aka TPP) indicate that Maryland Congressman Chris Van Hollen is a key figure whose help is needed to stop the TPP. Here's some brief which indicates that Van Hollen is receptive to our outreach to stop the TPP (excerpt below):
HUFFINGTON POST: President Barack Obama's international trade agenda is dead in the water if he doesn't do a better job engaging with Democrats in Congress.... "We want transparency. We want to see what's going on there," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told reporters. "We have a problem with that."

As a result, many Democrats fear the actual terms of the deal do not reflect traditional Democratic Party policy priorities. "This is a big problem now," said Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), the top Democrat on the House Budget Committee. "There is inadequate engagement on the substance of what will be in an agreement or out of an agreement."

Democrats in the House and Senate have complained for years about the secrecy standards the Obama administration has applied to the TPP, forcing members to jump over hurdles to see negotiation texts, and blocking staffer involvement. In 2012, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) complained that corporate lobbyists were given easy access while his office was being stymied, and even introduced protest legislation requiring more congressional input.

The issue came to a head Thursday in two ways. In one case, Obama's new nominee for China ambassador, Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.), angered his party by introducing fast-track trade legislation backed by the White House. The bill would ease the passage of the TPP and is cosponsored by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.). But most Democrats oppose the bill, and ultimately, Baucus and the administration introduced the legislation without a House Democratic co-sponsor -- a public embarrassment that prompted House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to declare Obama needs to get his act together on trade policy....

And most Democrats don't think the pending TPP deal addresses numerous labor, environmental and other issues adequately. Like NAFTA, the TPP would empower foreign corporations to directly challenge the laws and regulations of a country before an international tribunal. Under other trade frameworks, like the World Trade Organization treaties, only nations themselves are permitted to bring trade cases before an international arbiter, meaning companies must first win support from a government before attacking a law. Exxon Mobil, Dow Chemical, Eli Lilly and other corporations have used NAFTA to attempt to overturn Canadian regulations regarding offshore oil drilling, fracking, pesticides, drug patents and other issues....

ACT NOW TO STOP THE TPP CORPORATE POWER GRAB: The online mobilization group and has issued the following alert (excerpt below):
CREDO ACTION:  Stop this massive corporate power grab.  The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a terrible "trade" deal being negotiated in secret by the governments of a dozen countries (including ours) colluding with corporate interests.

Under the TPP, more American jobs would be offshored. Internet freedom would be a joke. Developing countries would lose access to lifesaving medicines. Unsafe foods and products could pour into our country. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Our best shot to stop the TPP is right now. The enactment of the TPP will hinge upon the passage of so-called “fast-track trade authority,” which would allow the president to sign off on the TPP before the American people or Congress ever have a chance to read it. A fast-track bill was introduced in Congress last week. So we need to speak out today....
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Monday, September 12, 2011

Obama VP Swap: O'Malley for Biden in 2012 // Plus, O'Malley's Maryland Socialism

Tea Leaves at store.barackobama.com?
UPDATE: An anonymous O'Malley aide, while denying any knowledge of Obama's plans, surprised Maryland Juice with the following comment: "People who work for the Governor actually take all options seriously. This was brought up at a small staff meeting a few weeks back." On second thought, Biden does seem to be unusually de-emphasized in Obama's merchandise store right now. And on 9/15, yet another update for those who enjoy finding meaning in little details: a reader reports that Gov. O'Malley has been tapped to defend Obama's Jobs Act in a White House press call right now: 
"THE WHITE HOUSE - Office of the Press Secretary: Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, Delaware Governor Jack Markell and Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter to Hold Conference Call on the Impact of the American Jobs Act."
A few weeks ago, Maryland Juice thought it would be fun to start flagging bits of evidence that may show Governor Martin O'Malley trying to position himself for the 2016 Presidential race. Unexpectedly, we kept noticing mentions of Mr. O'Malley for Vice President.... in 2012

Today's Baltimore Sun, for example, included :
President Obama rarely allows a photo opportunity to pass without using it to make some political point. So one has to wonder what significance to attach to the prominent place in the House of Representatives gallery Gov. Martin O'Malley was given, seated near the First Lady, during the president's speech to the joint session of Congress Thursday.

Could it be that Mr. O'Malley is being considered as a possible Democratic vice presidential choice after the current inept incumbent is dropped from the ticket?....
Maryland Juice decided to launch an investigation into this rumor. But first, here is a of Gov. O'Malley sitting near First Lady Michelle Obama last week. Does this look suspicious to you?

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