Thursday, February 28, 2013

Red Maryland Radio: 2/28/2013

Another big episode of Red Maryland Radio came at you tonight on the Red Maryland Network.



Listen to internet radio with redmaryland on Blog Talk Radio

On this week's show:
This is why you can't afford to miss Red Maryland Radio each and every Thursday night at 8, on the Red Maryland Network.......and don't forget that you can subscribe to the Red Maryland Network on iTunes.


More below the fold.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

As Anne Arundel County Turns...

In case you missed last night’s VRWC, which there is certainly no reason you should have, then not only did you squander an opportunity to listen to a fantastic interview with Councilman Jerry Walker and his thought process behind his selection of County Executive Laura Neuman, but you also missed an expose of the dirty behind the scene politics in Anne Arundel County.

This all started a few weeks ago when disgraced County Executive John Leopold resigned from office following his conviction.  That left an opening for potential successors. The would-be county executives, all of whom were required to be Republican, were required to submit applications to the Anne Arundel County Council, who would then vet and vote on the candidates.  

That’s when it all started…

As an Anne Arundel Central Committee Member, I receive several emails from activists throughout the year. These emails are sent to my jbraswell@aagop.org account through the www.aagop.org website. 

This is the first email I received…


































Notice a few of things:
  1. It was sent to my jbraswell@aagop.org address.
  2. The sent address wspangler7@gmail.com and return address wspangler2368@gmail.com are different.
  3. The personal attacks made towards Walker and Grasso: “It’s nice to know that even though two of our Council members lack the ethical and moral compass to guide them in such times…” Yeah, those are personal attacks. 
What can we deduce from this? This person clearly does not support Councilman Grasso, who has already announced that he is running for county exec, nor does this person support Councilman Walker.

So I decided to respond...


A few other things to notice:
  1. I used my law office address to respond jbraswell@lawbraswell.com
  2. She responded to my law office address
  3. I don’t have a vote for Anne Arundel County Executive. My job is to support all Republicans and to defend those who are attacked.
  4. This person attacked me. I don’t care. 
Remember, this person used my law office address.

Fast forward to the selection of County Executive Laura Neumann. It did not take anytime at all for the attacks to follow…personal attacks.

For those who follow Capital-Gazette and other local news sources online like Eye on Annapolis and Patch, you will have notice several personal attacks directed towards both County Executive Laura Neuman and Councilman Jerry Walker. You can view the links and the comments yourself, but one stood out – the Eye on Annapolis comment section and a person by the name of Caroline Reed, who posted her dissertation on Friday (it was also posted on Red Maryland).  Here is that specific screen shot from Eye of Annapolis.


Most of these are attacks are of a personal nature. Someone has an axe to grind.

Then something curious happened. Along with my fellow Central Committee mates I received an email on Saturday from Caroline Reed. This email contained the exact same diatribe that she posted the prior day. Here is a copy of that email.

























Notice two things
  1. Reed cites the article
  2. She sent it to my law office address, NOT my aagop.org address. While other central committee members received the same email VIA their aagop.org address, I did not. How did this individual know to use my lawbraswell.com address from the beginning?
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what happened. I responded to Ms. Spangler’s original email that was sent to my aagop.org email with my lawbraswell.com email. Spangler responded using lawbraswell.com. Caroline Reed immediately used my lawbraswell.com email when first emailing the Anne Arundel County Republican Central Committee.

Need further proof? Take a look at this comment from the moderator on Capital-Gazette.com


























Yes, further proof that there is a certain individual out there looking to disparage Laura Neuman.

This person does not like Walker or Grasso and does want County Executive Neuman in office. Why would this person hold such a grudge? In AAGOP political circles, it means one thing 99.9% of the time – another candidate is in the fold.

We cannot stand for this kind of behavior, particularly in the wake of such vitriol or spiteful attacks. Listen, you can attack policy and ideals all day and all night. That is what public debate is about. However, a line needs to be drawn when one goes personal with untrue and defamatory statements. This is not who we are. We are better than this.

The future candidates for Anne Arundel County Executive, all of whom are more than qualified to hold the office, should take note. This is not the way to run a campaign. Stick to the issues. We are pretty confident we know the individual running this smear campaign, and once we are 100% sure we are going to expose him or her.

Funny how those who profess Reagan and his 11th Commandment would abuse it when political opportunity…and money presents itself. 





More below the fold.

MD Education Department Failed To Follow Up On Criminal Background Checks for Child Care Employees

Maryland's education department failed to keep track of critical criminal background checks for state child care center employees.

legislative of audit of the Maryland State Department of Education found that MSDE did not adequately follow up on required criminal background checks alerts, failed to conduct required inspections of child care facilities, and did not perform timely reviews of the state’s child care subsidy eligibility requirements.

Through its central headquarters and 13 regional offices MSDE oversees 7,656 child care homes and 2,720 child care centers, serving 219,000 children.

Maryland state law mandates a criminal background check before any individual can work at a child care facility.  MSDE offices are alerted to initial background check results and receive ongoing alerts for any criminal activity.  MSDE received 5,000 alerts during the 2011 fiscal year.  OLA’s audit of MSDE procedures in following up on these alerts found that the department did not check to see that all individuals associated with child care facilities obtained required criminal background checks.

Auditors reviewed 25 alerts and found that MSDE did not properly follow up or inadequately followed up on 12 of those alerts.  One MSDE office failed to take action on five alerts from June of 2011, until OLA brought the matter to department’s attention.  The report also disclosed that three alerts were not followed up because there were no records of the individuals in MSDE’s Child Care Tracking Administration Tracking System.

In some cases, MSDE regional offices relied on “verbal confirmations” with child care facilities that individuals on alerts were no longer employed by the child care facility.

The report tested 60 child care facilities during the period from July 2008 to June 2011 and found that 23 facilities were missing at least one required inspection.  State regulations require at least one unannounced inspection each year.  Auditors also found that MSDE licensing supervisors at regional child care offices did not always use monitoring reports entered into CCATS.

The audit also disclosed that MSDE failed to monitor local social service departments to certify that state child care subsidy eligibility.  OLA found delays of up to 18 months for eligibility reviews.  One local social service department, which accounted for 16 percent of childcare subsidy payments in 2011, was not reviewed for three years.



More below the fold.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Bongino Destroys DeMarco in Gun Debate

Watch our good friend Dan Bongino completely dismantle Vinny DeMarco on News Channel 8. As our in-house rhetorician Rick Vatz, would say, this was exquisite. 







More below the fold.

My Name is Greg Kline and I am Running for Chairman of the Maryland Republican Party

If you listened to tonight's Broadside broadcast, you heard the announcement that our friend Andrew Langer is not running to be the next chairman of the Maryland Republican Party.  I want to personally thank Andrew for his hard work in trying to improve our state's party.  Certainly we can understand the family commitments that keep him from pursuing the chairmanship in good conscience.


So, those of us who found ourselves seeking transformational leadership that can make the MDGOP the functional institution that is needs to be to have any chance of curbing the relentless, statist Maryland Democratic machine, still need someone to accept the challenge of leading our party in a new and better direction.  Believe me, when I spoke with so many people about potential chairs I did not have my own name on the list.

I am a native Marylander.  My family has lived in this state not for generations but for centuries.  They were some of the farmers, waterman, workers, teachers and most importantly, citizens, that made Maryland such a special place.  I was born in LaPlata.  I grew up in Frederick County.  I graduated from Catoctin High School and the University of Maryland Baltimore County.  I was the first kid in my family to go to college, let alone become an attorney.  My story isn't unique.  It is the story of so many citizens of the Free State whose hard work in a free society allowed them to create a future better than that of their parents.  It is a legacy I hope to pass on to my daughter but it is a legacy deeply threatened by the poor governance of state leaders more worried about keeping and expanding their political power than serving the public good.

I have been a Republican all my life.  I came of age during the Reagan Revolution and was inspired by the example of Ronald Reagan.  I still am.  My parents and grandparents taught me to work hard, to take personal responsibility and to understand that nothing in life is worth having that isn't worth working for.  They taught me to be honest and that no material gain is worth the price of my integrity.  It was the simple work ethic and common decency that made this country and this state such a wonderful place.  My forebears were not all Republicans but the values they taught me are the reasons why I am and have always been a Republican.

That ethic stayed with me as I became politically involved.  I was active with the UMBC College Republicans.  I graduated with a degree in Applied Politics. After law school, I began my career working for a great mentor, Stephen Wehner. Steve represented Delegate Tony O'Donnell when he was first elected in a close election state democrats tried to steal.  Steve also served as counsel to the MDGOP under Chairman Joyce Terhes.  He did this pro bono because he was a true believer in the conservative cause.  It was an honor to work with him and the MDGOP, whether it was in a contested alderman election in Annapolis, or supporting the Sauerbrey for Governor campaign. I later served as counsel to the Anne Arundel County Republican State Central Committee for three years under three separate chairman. I also served as counsel to the Maryland Young Republicans.

Later in my career, I was part of the team who fought back against the Democrat led General Assembly when they tried to fire the Ehrlich Public Service Commission.  I saw first hand the lengths the Democratic machine, then trying to elect Martin O'Malley Governor, would go to seize power.  It was my honor to argue to the Maryland Court of Appeals that the legislature was acting unconstitutionally and to rebut the Democratic Attorney General's claims that the power of the General Assembly was essentially unlimited.  We prevailed in convincing the Court of Appeals and that victory stands as a precedent on the limitations of legislative power in this state.

My activism has not been limited to my work as an attorney. I was a volunteer for both my local Anne Arundel GOP party and for various candidates.  I served as President of the Anne Arundel County Young Republicans for two years and served on the Maryland Young Republicans Executive Committee. In 2002, the Anne Arundel County Republican Central Committee honored me with the Unsung Hero Award. Like so many activists in our party, I was dedicated to doing the hard work to get good candidates elected and saw their victories as successes of a movement bigger than any of us.

While never being someone who desired a career in elected office, I did run for the House of Delegates in District 33A in 2006.  There was a competitive primary and the campaign  was definitely rough and tumble.  In a district where the top two vote getters advanced, I came in third.  While disappointed, I congratulated the winners, joined them for a unity breakfast and work a poll that November.  

As a candidate, I met many conservative voters who had very little knowledge of local politics.  To help change that, I began to blog and was one of the original founders of the the blog Red Maryland.  Red Maryland was ahead of its time in bringing together local bloggers and citizen journalists to spread the word of the Republican party and to tell the truth about the Maryland Democratic machine.  That innovation continued as I started the first of its kind Maryland conservative podcast, which ultimately blossomed into a daily Internet radio platform known as the Red Maryland Network.  

As an activist and a blogger, I have been a part of the triumphs and travails of the Maryland Republican Party.  I have worked with a number of chairman, executive directors and central committee members to improve our party.

This is why I was part of the group that wanted to find a new and different kind of leader for the MDGOP.  Our party suffers from a culture where those in leadership are not willing to sacrifice their own personal interests or ambitions for the greater good of our party and our movement.  This has made the leadership of the party defensive about criticism rather than seeing it as an opportunity to improve.  It has created an environment of distrust where factional interests fear the party's success. It has made the party slow to adapt to the opportunities offered by the internet, opportunities which could provide the MDGOP a cost effective way to level the playing field and help us to fight smarter at a time when we are so desperately outgunned and outnumbered.

Only a chairman willing to accept the responsibility for our party's failures and willing to spread the credit for success can change this.  Only a chairman who has shown an ability to put their own ambitions to the side to serve a greater good can change this.  Only a chairman who has no intramural agenda to help this faction or that group or this candidate can change this.  Only a chairman without future electoral ambitions can establish the trust to mend fences and inspire the various groups within and around our party to buy into a plan that can translate into electoral success.

There are others who share my view of the leadership we need.  There are many others who fit this bill.  None, however, have announced their intention to run for the job of chairman of the Maryland Republican Party.  

With no illusions of the challenges, with no doubts about the stakes, I have decided to run for the chairmanship of the Maryland Republican Party.  

I am honored by the support of so many that I respect in this effort.  As I travel this state that I love in the coming months, I look forward to meeting others who share my concerns and are willing to join me in a fight for something bigger than ourselves, that free and prosperous future our forebears left to us.

Greg Kline 


More below the fold.

Monday, February 25, 2013

My Statement on the Race for the MDGOP Chair

Friends,

This piece was extraordinarily hard to write, much more than I initially thought it was going to be. The outpouring of support and enthusiasm for my potential MDGOP chairmanship campaign has been truly humbling.

Unfortunately, I will not be a candidate for MDGOP Chair at this time. As much as I would love to serve in this capacity and help transform this party into the party we all know that it can be, circumstances dictate that I cannot seek this post this time.

But my decision should not be seen as an indication that I have lost faith in the potential that this party has to really transform the state of Maryland. I have not! There are merely two very plain, but totally unavoidable circumstances that have led me to this decision.

First and foremost, is my wife's career. Many of you know that my wife, Janice, is an officer serving in the US Air Force.  Many of you also know that my family recently celebrated the news that Janice will be getting promoted to full Colonel in another year. And while this is a truly momentous and celebratory occasion, it also comes with a melancholy possibility that we will be moving from Maryland sometime in the very near future—possibly this summer, possibly in another year.

While there is a very slight possibility that we would be staying in Maryland, and while we have every intention of moving back here when my wife’s military service comes to an end, the reality is we will likely be moving away from Maryland for some period of time, sometime in the next 18 months.  This was the subject of a great deal of discussion, with friends and colleagues from all around the state—could I take on the post, and try to implement a plan, with the possibility that I may be moving in 4 months or 16 months?

In the end, I did not, in good conscience, feel that I could seek this post were I not going to be able to carry out any plan that I had created to the maximum effect and to its fullest conclusion. It would not be fair to any of you or to the party as a whole.  

Were I staying here, were I able to guarantee that I would be in Maryland long enough to see a plan implemented which would fundamentally transform the way that the MDGOP operates, then I would be running. As I said before, I have not lost faith in the potential for those who believe in free markets and limited government in Maryland to have a truly transformative impact on the state. And in discussing my potential run, and the potential candidacies of other individuals, it has become clear that the way the MDGOP conducts business as a party must change!

It is to that end, that this group of individuals deeply concerned with the direction in future of the Maryland Republican Party has gathered together to plan and strategize for how to make that's entirely necessary changes happen, and happen now. We have thought long and hard about the potential leaders for this party moving into the future.

It is to that and that I announce my support it this time for my friend and RedMaryland colleague, Gregory M. Kline for Chairman of the Maryland Republican Party. I have known Greg for a number of years, and many of you have got to know him as well through his political volunteer work, and his work in building both Red Maryland, the preeminent Maryland conservative political blog, and the RedMaryland Radio Network.

Greg is both thoughtful and serious—someone of deeply-held conservative convictions who is an outspoken fighter for the values we all hold dear.  His keen intellect and forward-thinking is exactly what this party needs in a new chairman.

Here is my pledge to you: I will work to elect Greg chairman of the state party. I will help Greg put together a group of tireless, well intentioned volunteers to make his chairmanship a reality, and then work with him in that role as a sort of kitchen cabinet. We will insure that the chairmanship is not the job of one individual.  It can’t be.  We will work to ensure that the various factions in the Maryland Republican Party come together.

This is the time for serious people to come together because our state is in serious trouble. We need people like Greg, thoughtful, serious leaders, who will bring thoughtful, serious leadership to the state party.

Thank you all again for your enthusiasm and support for me.  Please, join me in showering Greg with that enthusiastic support.

In Liberty,

Andrew Langer


More below the fold.

AND THE WINNERS ARE...

June Smith

Somehow, given the state of our festering, sequestering nation, led by a president re-elected despite a four-year record of failure, and the politically powerful leftist Hollywood entertainment industry, it should come as no surprise that Michelle Obama made a “surprise” appearance at the Oscars, "live" via satellite just before midnight on Sunday night, flanked by beaming members of the armed services.

Introduced by three-time Oscar winner Jack Nicholson, the glittering First Lady, “wearing Naeem Khan” as they say, welcomed everyone to the White House and said she was “so honored to introduce the nominees for Best Picture and to help celebrate the movies that lift our spirits, broaden our minds and transport us to places we have never imagined."

ht michelle obama dm 130225 wblog Michelle Obama Names Best Picture in Surprise Oscars Appearance

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

Praising the "upifting qualities” of the nine nominees for Best Picture, FLOTUS, broadcasting from the Diplomatic Room of the White House, said “These lessons apply to all of us no matter who we are or what we look like or where we come from or who we love, but they are especially important for our young people…I want to thank all of you here tonight for being part of that vitally important work.”

These movies “took us back in time and all around the world. They made us laugh. They made us weep and made us grip our armrests just a little tighter. They taught us that love can endure against all odds and transform our minds in the most surprising ways. And they reminded us that we can overcome any obstacle if we dig deep enough and fight hard enough and find the courage to believe in ourselves,” she added.

Hard to say which of the nine nominated movies had the most “uplifting qualities”:

“Lincoln”, the Civil War saga;

Amour”, an old-age end-of-life love story;

“Argo”, the Iran hostage story;

“Life of Pi”, a shipwreck story;

“Silver Linings Playbook”, a mental health romance;

“Zero Dark Thirty”, the killing of Osama bin Laden;

and from “The Title Says It All” department:

-“Les Miserables” (billed as a “musical”);

-“Beasts of the Southern Wild”; and

-“Django Unchained”.

The winners? “Argo” and the Obama Administration for another “first”.

The losers? We, the people, who believe in the Constitution, hold the conservative views of personal responsibility, limited government, free markets, etc. , and are gripping our armrests a little tighter every day.
 
June Smith founded this tribute website in honor of her late husband, Ron Smith, WBAL Talk Show Host, Emmy Award winner, and Baltimore Sun Columnist. Smith was a media titan in Maryland and beyond for almost forty years. Mrs. Smith is working diligently to raise one million dollars for the Ron Smith Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund at Johns Hopkins. She blogs for Red Maryland www.RedMaryland.Blogspot.com; her email is june@friendsofronsmith.com.


More below the fold.

The Broadside Tonight 8pm




Andrew Langer's BIG ANNOUNCEMENT.

Mike Flynn from Breitbart.com on Sequestration.

A General Assembly update, and hey your electric bill is going up. 

and... a new occasional segment: Birthdays.





More below the fold.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

O'Malley Promised to "Stop the Rate Hikes" Seven Years Later Rates Still Going Up


Millions of Maryland electricity ratepayers will see their rates increase next month. The Maryland Public Service Commission approved an $80 million rate increase requested by Baltimore Gas & Electric.  The increase will add $3.33 to monthly electric bills. The PSC also approved a $32 million rate increase for gas distribution.  The rate increase took effect over the weekend. 

Maryland’s second largest utility PEPCO, applied for $60 million rate increase in November, after receiving smaller than requested increase in July.

This latest BGE rate increase comes on the heels of Governor O’Malley’s offshore wind proposal advancing in the Maryland House of Delegates.  O’Malley’s says his plan would add $1.50 to monthly electric bills in order to subsidize construction of wind turbines off the coast of Maryland.  In reality, the cost to ratepayers will be significantly higher.

These rate increases and the ratepayer subsidies for oceanic wind farm contrasts starkly with the O’Malley who, first campaigned on the specific promise of lowering electric rates.

During a 2006 televised debate with his opponent former Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, O’Malley stated

As Governor I am going to appoint competent, qualified, professional regulators to the job so that we actually have a hearing to determine what is the fair and reasonable rate that BGE can charge us for this commodity they buy. That did not happen in this case. There is no clearer issue that separates my governing philosophy from the governor’s than this one I will stand with the, rate payers, consumers, and working people of our state, he will always side with the powerful wealthy energy interests and utility lobbyists… The only guarantee we have is that if you [Ehrlich] get reelected we’re all going to be paying a lot more for energy.

Seven years later and one reelection victory later, Maryland electric rates are 54 percent higher than when he first took office. Rates decreased over the last two years because of a drop in demand due to the recession, not O'Malley's policies.



 In fact, many of O’Malley’s energy policies are the reason Marylanders are seeing higher monthly electric bills.

One policy particular, EmPower Maryand, O’Malley’s plan to reduce per-capita energy consumption 15 percent by 2015, has added surcharges to monthly bills.  The law allows utilities to pass on to customers the costs of implementing EmPower Maryland mandates. 

One regulation in the law, bill stabilization or decoupling, literally allows utilities to charge customers for power they did not use.  For example, under O’Malley’s decoupling regulations, PEPCO charged customers for power they didn’t use by a severe derecho, last June.  In 2011, through bill stabilization, PEPCO charged charged customers for power they didn’t use while suffering through outages caused by a massive snowstorm.

Furthermore, a report released by the Maryland Public Interest Research Group found that utilities are likely to miss EmPower Maryland goals by as much as 52 percent.







More below the fold.

ShareThis