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Let’s Play Guess the Party.

Posted by Ed C on Thursday, March 22, 2007

We have two stories from the home page of the Examiner under Maryland News that deal with corruption / ethics violations with elected representatives. Let ‘s see if we can tell what party the individuals belong.

Exhibit 1:

Ethics committee recommends censure for GOP lawmaker

The House Ethics Committee voted Wednesday to recommend censure for a Republican lawmaker who pleaded guilty in a domestic violence incident that followed a traffic stop involving suspected drunken driving.

Exhibit 2:

Public corruption case against ex-senator concerns lawmakers

Lawmakers have known for more than a year that their former colleague – the once-powerful Thomas Bromwell who headed the Senate Finance Committee – was in trouble after being indicted in a federal public corruption probe alleging influence-peddling.

Well, the first case is pretty easy. Obviously, the first one deals with a Republican. It’s in the headline and the again in the first paragraph. The second? Hmmm. Not in the headline, not in the first paragraph. Well, let’s start counting paragraphs 1, 2, 3… Damn, now I have to take off my shoes … 11, 12,.. 25. Yep at the 25th paragraph (out of 29 paragraphs in the story) we see:

Bromwell, a Democrat who represented Baltimore County in the Senate from 1983 until 2002, and his wife Mary Pat are charged in an alleged racketeering scheme involving minority contracting fraud while he was in office. They have pleaded not guilty.

Rather than make some snarky comment about media bias, I’m just going to assume that there really is an underlying rationale for this. How about:

When a Republican has an ethical problem it is such a rare occurrence that it needs to be stated right up front that the offending individual is not a Democrat. When it happens to be a Democrat? Well, that’s just to be expected, the natural way they do business and should be assumed unless told otherwise.

Works for me.

Read the rest of this entry »


Posted in Ed C, Media | 3 Comments »

Vile is as Vile does

Posted by David Keelan on Sunday, November 26, 2006

Another Howard County Blogger has a post calling Mitt Romney a Vile Scumbag.  Searching the writer’s blog it seems that this epitath is based upon an article written by Eleanor Clift.  Eleanor has earned the nickname Eleanor “Hillary” Clift for her political idealogoy.  Since this blogger hasn’t written anything else about Mitt Romney I am left to wonder if his feelings are simply based upon Clift’s article.

The basis of Clift’s article is that Mitt Romney is pandering to GOP conservatives on the issue of traditional marriage.

There ought to be a prohibition against opportunistic politicians messing around in state laws to further their presidential ambitions. With his days as governor of Massachusetts nearing an end, Mitt Romney is trying to reopen the issue of same-sex marriage in the only state where it is legal.

The problem with Clift’s article is that Mitt Romney has been a supporter of traditional marriage when he ran against Ted Kennedy for the US Senate and Eleanor Clift knows it – or if she is a journalist worth her salt she could have easily researched it.

During his 1994 campaign against Senator Edward Kennedy, Romney said that same-sex marriage “is not appropriate at this time”[35] but supported Federal legislation that would prohibit discrimination in the workplace against homosexuals.[36]

In fact Romney is on the record very clearly on this matter.  He advocates respect and tolerance for gay couples.  He also supports the same rights for gay couples that those in traditional marriage enjoy.  Eleanor Clift should know this and should report it instead of writing vile articles.

…also voiced support for basic domestic partnership benefits for gay couples. Romney told the Log Cabin Club of Massachusetts (a Republican gay-rights group) that he did not support same-sex marriage, but would fight discrimination against gays and lesbians. He also opposed an amendment, then before the Legislature, that would have banned same-sex marriage and outlawed all domestic partnership benefits for gay couples. As a result, the Log Cabin Club endorsed Romney in the gubernatorial election. When campaigning in 2002, Romney’s stated position was that “all citizens deserve equal rights, regardless of sexual orientation” and that “homosexuals should have the right to a domestic partnership status that affords them the potential for health benefits and rights of survivorship.”

Anyone who uses the internet, a blogger for example, could get the same information – if they wanted to.  Of course, it is their right not to bother.

What are we to conclude?  That Clift is lazy?  That the blogger believes everything that he reads and posts it without seeking more information?

I believe that Romney has been consistent on the subject in question.  He hasn’t been pandering to anyone.  Agree with him or not I find that his consistent stand to be refreshing.

Perhaps Ms. Clift will next wow us with her in depth analysis and research regarding how Mitt Romney brought universal health care to Massachusetts and we will find that posted on Steve’s blog too.  Some how I doubt it.

Posted in Howard County Blogs, Media | 24 Comments »

Free Advice?

Posted by David Keelan on Monday, November 20, 2006

Senator Allan Kittleman brought this The Baltimore Sun opinion piece to my attention.

Picking up the pieces

With the loss of the governor’s office and a handful of seats in a General Assembly that was already overwhelmingly Democratic, it’s understandable that Maryland Republicans are feeling blue since the election. Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.’s defeat is a particularly disappointing moment for party loyalists, many of whom labored a generation or more before finally witnessing a GOP governor in Annapolis. But while the setback is significant, it needn’t be long-term.

It reminds me of a post written at brain-terminal “Earnest Advice from the Opposition“.  In which the New York Times encourages the New York State Republican Party to be more like Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

A pragmatist like Mayor Michael Bloomberg could serve as the vanguard of a new New York Republican Party. He won twice in a heavily Democratic city by adding probity and managerial expertise to Mr. Pataki’s issues list. Some upstaters regard Mr. Bloomberg as too independent — their term is RINO, or Republican in Name Only. That’s a self-destructive attitude for a party on the ropes. New York’s G.O.P. should embrace the city’s dynamic mayor as its guiding star.

What the Baltimore Sun is asking of Republicans is that they be more like Democrats.  The New York Times is making the same case.

Don’t get me wrong – Bloomberg is a fine Mayor, but so was Guilliani.  Pataki was a fine Governor.  Bloomberg is the Connie Morella of New York politics.  Gulliani a moderate Republican and Pataki a conservative (for the most part) Republican.  Republicans are not in the same position in New York as they are in Maryland.  Maryland is tough.  However, their is much more to being the loyal opposition than accepting minority status.

Maryland isn’t voting on social issues as much as they are national and pocket book issues.  Republican in State wide races are not running on social issues – though many of their opponents try to make it an issue.  Local candidates do no run on social issues either.

Let me ask, how many Republican candidates for Governor or President has the Baltimore Sun endorsed?  Very few in the past 50 years.  To paraphrase: Would Peter Angelos take advise from George Steinbrenner on how to beat the New York Yankees?

If we have accepted one party rule in Maryland then this is sound advice.  However, encouraging the Republican Party to be more like Democrats will leave little room for debate on the issues.  We will be a State devoid of not a loyal opposition but of new ideas.

Is that good for Democracy?  I don’t think so.

Posted in Maryland, Media, Republicans | 1 Comment »

Washington Post Endorses Ehrlich

Posted by David Keelan on Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Read it yourself

It isn’t all glowing but here are some highlights

The Good Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Ehrlich, Maryland, Media, O'Malley | 1 Comment »

GOP Sample Ballot

Posted by David Keelan on Saturday, September 9, 2006

Everything you wanted to know about Ken Ulman  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Howard County, Media | 2 Comments »

HoCo Times Political Ads

Posted by David Keelan on Friday, September 8, 2006

Being the last week of the primary elections I fully expected this weeks Howard County Times edition to be full of political ads I was disappointed. 

With a circulation of 20,000 I am surprised more candidates didn’t take advantage of the exposure. 

However, the Times did do its continued coverage of various races providing free publicity for many of the candidates.  There were a lot of letters pro and con for various candidates also providing free publicity for the candidates.

The only ads I saw were for:

John White for U.S. Congress in the GOP Primary.  This is a a color ad based soley on illegal immigration and features an endorsement from Ivan Betancourt, President of the Howard County Republican Club.  Ivan hails from South America and is a naturalized US Citizen and an all around great guy.  It is a large three column ten inch ad.

Jim Fitzgerald for Sheriff in the Democratic Primary.  This is a black and white three column 5 inch ad.  It includes an endorsement from States Attorney of Howard County Tim McCrone, Howard County Police Officers’ Association, Columbia Democratic Club, Baltimore Council of AFL-CIO Unions, and the Howard County Sheriff’s FOP.

Greg Fox in the Council District Five Primary.  The largest and most impactful ad was his  full page full color ad. 

Greg pulled out the big guns with support from Governor Bob Ehrlich, Lt. Governor Michael Steele (“Greg has the character and integrity required for public office.”).  It is also accompanied with photos of Greg with Bob Ehrlich, Michael Steele, Allan Kittleman, and the Fox mascot with Kendall and Bob Ehrlich.

Of course he has the continued support of State Senators Allan Kittleman and Sandy Schrader (no surprises).    Finally it touts his endorsement by the Howard County Times.

Warren Miller in the Republican Primary for House of Delegates District 9A.  This is a five column five inch black and white ad.  It was paid for by the one of his many supporters, the Maryland Realtors PAC.  It touts Warren’s commitment to affordable housing, protecting homeowners, buyers, and small business, and his work on “Brownfields” laws.

William Donald Schaefer for Comptroller in the Democratic Primary.  This is a classy ad and is the second best in that it really grabbed my attention in its simplicity and straight forward message.  But kind of looks like a memorial.  It touts his lifelong public service.

Notably missing was an ad from Guy Guzzone or the slate he is running on.  What is he doing with his $150,000?  He could have bought any page in the Times that he wanted.

Also, I expected an ad from Ken Ulman just to put the final nail into Harry Dunbar’s campaign.  It will be very interesting to see how many protest votes Dunbar picks up on Tuesday.  It will be very telling for the General Election.

I paged through the paper five times.  I don’t think I missed any ads.  Let me know if I did.

As I said, Times covered some of the contested primarys so a lot of candidates got free press.

  • Dunbar v Ulman – County Executive
  • Fox v Livesy – Council District 5
  • Feldmark v Sigaty v UNCommon, X – District 4
  • Turner, Quinter, Guzzone, Basu and Pendergrass – House of Delegates District 13
  • Becker and Bernhardt v Titman – County Circuit Court
  • Cave v Fitzgerald – County Sheriff
  • 3rd Congressional District

Then of course their was the plethora of letters to the editor.  Some seem planted.  You decide which ones.

  • Three pro Livesay Council District 5
  • One anti Fox Council District 5
  • Marna McLendon (former States Attorney) against Livesay and for no one
  • Kathleen Sappington for Greg Fox
  • Angela Beltram (COPE – I think this is the 3rd letter in a row) against Guzzone and Ulman following up on her promise to remind voters who voted to pass the comp-lite legislation.
  • One for Peter Beilenson for US Congress
  • Two pro Titman for Judge
  • One pro Fitzgerald for Sheriff
  • One pro Cave for Sheriff
  • Two pro Sigaty for Council District 4
  • Three pro Feldmark for Council District 4
  • One pro Dyer for Board of Education
  • Two pro Ulman for County Executive
  • One pro Zou for Board of Education
  • Two anti Hollinger for Congress
  • One anti Guzzone for House of Delegates

Posted in Howard County, Howard County News, Media | 13 Comments »

Howard County Times Sample Ballot

Posted by David Keelan on Thursday, September 7, 2006

Everything you wanted to know about Ken Ulman 

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Howard County News, Media | 8 Comments »

Herman Charity, The Hatch Act, HoCo Times

Posted by David Keelan on Thursday, May 25, 2006

Don’t panic.  I am not at it again.

I have been told that Mr. Charity has decided not to run for Sheriff.  Apparantly the dust up over the Hatch Act and Wayne Livesay has given Mr. Charity pause to reconsider the implications of declaring his candidacy for a partisan office.

On April 27th I had reported that Mr. Charity was considering a run for Sheriff.

“Rumor has it he is considering a run. Also it is rumored (it may have been announced) that the President of the Howard County Police Departments union, Jim Fitzgerald may throw his hat into the ring too. “

Mr. Charity decided not to run (I am told) because he would have to resign from his current position (Assistant to the County Executive) in the County adminsration in order to launch a campaign.  Otherwise he would be in violation of the Hatch Act.

Well, that is a refreshing approach!  Maybe he should run for County Council District Five.  I wonder if he got an opinion from the OSC.

While discussing this with my source we wondered if Mr. Charity might not be Howard County’s next Police Chief.  Why not, he is Robey’s assistant, gained a lot of good administrative and management experience, he is a former policeman, good interim choice if Robey wants the next County Executive to appoint the next police chief.  Maybe that is why he isn’t running for Sheriff?  Probably not, Robey knew he would have to replace Livesay sooner rather than later.  Since I heard the initial rumor in late April I would think Robey would have said something like “Herman, cool your heels.  I have other plans for you.”

HOWARD COUNTY TIMES EDITORIAL Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Howard County, Howard County News, Media | 1 Comment »

Les Kinsolving

Posted by David Keelan on Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Dave Wissing of the Hedgehog Report provides his readers with updates on Les Kinsolving and his interaction with the White House Press Secretary.

I met Les once at the Baltimore St. Patrick Parade. He asked me if I knew who he was. Being new to the area at the time I hadn't a clue and I told him "Sorry, I don't…." He seemed genuinely crushed. I remember that from over 10 years ago because he really seemed to take it hard. He wasn't annoyed, or dismayed, just disappointed.

From that point on I knew who Les was – I felt sorry for him I guess.

Anyway, back to Dave's Kinsolving Watch. I get a kick out of those updates and am encouraging him to compile those posts in a category dedicated to Les instead of general media. I am also encouraging him to start a Fan Club.

After Dave's most recent update I thought I would do an internet search on Les. I found this article in the Baltimore City Paper. Les is also a prolific writer, and sometimes very funny.

You can go to Les' web site too. Less Kinsolving

Posted in Media | Leave a Comment »


Posted by David Keelan on Friday, April 28, 2006

From a concerned citizen.

It has come to my attention that the Washington Post has gutted its staff in Howard County and is on its way to closing the Howard County bureau and merging it with the Anne Arundel County bureau. Coverage of Howard County will be severely curtailed and the Howard edition will cease to exist. This is being done, in part, because "Readership Surveys" indicate that we, in Howard County, don't read news about Howard County.

Whether you are a subscriber, or a website reader, or not a reader at all- the importance of having more than one regional newspaper report on Howard County can not be underrated. It may be too late to reverse the course of these decisions, but I encourage you to take a moment and write to Robert J. McCartney, the Assistant Managing Editor for Metro News at to voice your concerns.

Please forward this to any other Howard County email group to which you belong so that our emails will be enough to make an impact on this decision.

Posted in Media | Leave a Comment »