Saturday, January 26, 2013

Eric Luedtke: Liberal $ellout

Longtime readers are aware of our history with Eric Luedtke, the current member of the Maryland House of Delegates who first showed up on our radar as a whiny blogger and is now leading the charge to restrict your rights to petition for a redress of grievances


During his tenure in the General Assembly however, it turns out that Luedtke's opinions are malleable. That is, if you're willing to show him the money.

Prior to being elected to the General Assembly, Luedtke was like most of Montgomery County's liberal establishment in opposing the expansion of gambling. For example, he filed a bill that would outlaw video game rooms providing "sweepstakes" on the grounds that they would allegedly put slots on every corner.

Luedtke's position, in liberal parlance, began to "evolve" last year when the Maryland State Education Association began to be proponents of the expansion of gambling in order to get their claws into the revenue stream. Luedtke is a member of the MSEA and was of course a teacher. In March Luedtke found the existing bill in the regular session to be "troubling." But by the August Special Session the Metamorphosis of Luedtke was complete. He was now proposing fixes to the bills, instead of opposing them. And when push came to shove Eric Luedtke, who had been a lifelong opponent of the expansion of casino gambling, voted for SB1 both in committee and on the floor.

So, what changed Luedtke's mind? Well, clearly the trappings of power appealed to Luedtke's practical sense. I mean it can't be a coincidence that Howard County Delegate Frank Turner opposed the gambling expansion bill and then was replaced as Chairman of the Finance Resources Subcommittee, the subcommittee that deals with gambling, by Eric Luedtke.

But power of course isn't the only thing that talks. Money talks as well. The biggest individual contribution to Luedtke's campaign in 2012 came in on September 20th in the amount of $1,000. And the contribution came from.....Ocean Downs. An obvious beneficiary to the slots expansion. There were other related post-special session contributions as well, including $250 from Atlantic Bingo Supply and super lobbyist W. Minor Carter.

Take a look at the full campaign finance report to see all of the gory details:



So to recap, Eric Luedtke was against all forms of slot machine gambling until he realized that by voting for it he was opening himself up to the world of more power and larger profit. It's just another example of a leftist getting elected to office and throwing their liberal principles under the bus under the tried and true Maryland Democratic formula: Go to Annapolis, collect political contributions, obey the bosses and get rewarded with a subcommittee chair, and profit......

UPDATE, 1/26, 2:02PM: Luedtke responded via Twitter with the following, and some edits from the original were made. Though you can follow the entire conversation to see I touched a nerve....

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