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By Steny H. Hoyer | May 17, 2001
WASHINGTON -- After prevailing in the closest presidential election in history -- which only 50 percent of Americans said in a recent poll he had won "fair and square" -- George W. Bush gave every indication that he would be a strong voice for federal election reform. Eleven days after taking office, President Bush met with members of the Congressional Black Caucus and promised them that he would give serious attention to fixing the nation's election system. "This is America," the president said.
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NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | February 7, 2013
Under Maryland law, there's a limit to how much money a citizen can donate to state political campaigns — $4,000 to a single candidate, $10,000 in total donations during a four-year election cycle. But some Marylanders are less limited than others. Take, for instance, the developer Edward St. John. Through dozens of corporations he owns that operate out of the headquarters of St. John Properties in Baltimore County, he's funneled more than $250,000 to Maryland politicians of both parties over the past two years.
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NEWS
December 15, 1996
INADVERTENTLY, Brian H. Davis may have done Marylanders a favor. By making a mockery of state campaign finance laws during a quarter-million-dollar giving binge, this little-known Baltimore businessman has become the poster child for election reform in the General Assembly.Why Mr. Davis so flagrantly exceeded donation limits in sprinkling big contributions to numerous politicians remains a mystery. What's clear is how he could get away with obvious violations of state election laws.The secret lies in the antiquated set-up at the state elections board.
NEWS
January 24, 2012
As elected officials in Baltimore and Annapolis seek to address the debacle that was the city's voter turnout during the mayoral primary and general election last year, it's clear that the thing they care about the most is what voters care about the least: what's in it for the politicians. State House leaders (in particular, Senate PresidentThomas V. Mike Miller) don't like the fact that the current system allows city officials to run for governor or the legislature without giving up their seats - in essence, allowing them a free shot at higher office.
NEWS
February 5, 1996
UNDER NORMAL circumstances, the Maryland General Assembly moves with the speed of a tortoise. But with changes needed in the election law before the March 5 presidential primary, lawmakers are acting more like rabbits this time.What legislators are considering for immediate change hardly constitutes a revolution. That will come later if the Assembly sets up a blue-ribbon commission to do a complete rewrite of the state's outmoded election laws. For now, the focus is on implementing a change that will make the March 5 primary more efficient for some voters.
NEWS
January 24, 2012
As elected officials in Baltimore and Annapolis seek to address the debacle that was the city's voter turnout during the mayoral primary and general election last year, it's clear that the thing they care about the most is what voters care about the least: what's in it for the politicians. State House leaders (in particular, Senate PresidentThomas V. Mike Miller) don't like the fact that the current system allows city officials to run for governor or the legislature without giving up their seats - in essence, allowing them a free shot at higher office.
NEWS
By Laurie Willis and Laurie Willis,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | March 9, 2001
WASHINGTON - House Majority Leader Dick Armey and NAACP President Kweisi Mfume discussed everything from proposed tax cuts to racial profiling yesterday during a meeting in Armey's Capitol office that followed weeks of heated accusations from both sides. The hourlong meeting was closed to the news media, but the two men held a news conference shortly afterward, with the Texas Republican declaring that "Kweisi Mfume and I just had a wonderful visit." Armey, standing next to Mfume at a podium outside the Capitol, said education, economics, hate crimes and racial profiling were among the issues discussed.
NEWS
By Bob Mahlburg and Bob Mahlburg,ORLANDO SENTINEL | June 30, 2004
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A coalition of groups called yesterday on Gov. Jeb Bush to order a statewide study of the August primary election to make sure voting systems work for November's presidential vote. Florida is a key battleground and problems have been found with a type of electronic voting machine used by 11 of its 67 counties, including some in central and South Florida. "The buck stops with Gov. Jeb. Bush," said Sandy Wayland, of the Miami-Dade Election Reform Coalition. "He can either be a leader in election reform or he can stick his head in the sand and do nothing.
NEWS
By Elijah E. Cummings | May 23, 2001
SIX MONTHS have passed since the flawed 2000 election threw democracy into chaos. Americans demand that President Bush and Congress act promptly to guarantee that our voting rights will be protected in future elections. The president -- and Republican House and Senate leaders -- must respond for themselves. I am convinced, however, that the actions needed to restore confidence in the democratic process are straight-forward and achievable. The first step toward comprehensive election reform must be a bipartisan commitment to enforcing the voting rights laws already on the books.
NEWS
February 3, 1995
A key topic of debate in Annapolis these days is election reform. This hardly rates as a shocker after the heat and light generated by Republican Ellen R. Sauerbrey's challenge of Gov. Parris N. Glendening's slim victory at the polls last fall.Several bills to reform Maryland election laws will come before the House of Delegates Commerce and Government Matters Committee on Feb. 14. One proposal, HB 244, would create a task force "to recommend any necessary changes. . . in the voting and vote counting process."
NEWS
May 12, 2008
An array of well-funded independent political organizations on the left and right are busy influencing voters' choices in national and local elections in this political year. In Maryland, the Fund for Growth, an anti-tax, anti-spend advocacy group, spent more than a million dollars in February's Republican primary helping state Sen. Andy Harris upset nine-term incumbent Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest. Such outside efforts, while legal, can make winning candidates beholden to hidden special interests.
NEWS
By KELLY BREWINGTON and KELLY BREWINGTON,SUN REPORTER | January 11, 2006
Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.'s vetoes of four election reform bills passed last year should be upheld, according to findings released yesterday by a nonpartisan panel appointed by the governor. The report's release came on the eve of this year's General Assembly session as Democratic leaders vowed to override several of Ehrlich's vetoes, including three of the four election measures. Democrats have called the reforms - which include early voting, absentee ballots on demand and tougher laws against voter intimidation - crucial to ensuring a just electoral system.
NEWS
By Bob Mahlburg and Bob Mahlburg,ORLANDO SENTINEL | June 30, 2004
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A coalition of groups called yesterday on Gov. Jeb Bush to order a statewide study of the August primary election to make sure voting systems work for November's presidential vote. Florida is a key battleground and problems have been found with a type of electronic voting machine used by 11 of its 67 counties, including some in central and South Florida. "The buck stops with Gov. Jeb. Bush," said Sandy Wayland, of the Miami-Dade Election Reform Coalition. "He can either be a leader in election reform or he can stick his head in the sand and do nothing.
NEWS
By David G. Savage and David G. Savage,LOS ANGELES TIMES | September 8, 2003
WASHINGTON -- During the 1990s, television viewers knew an election was approaching when ads urged them to call Candidate X and tell him Y. In 1996, for example, Montana viewers were told: "Call Bill Yellowtail and tell him to support family values." This was the tag line for an ad that said Yellowtail, an environmentalist and a Democratic candidate for Congress, had taken "a swing at his wife," failed to pay child support and had been convicted of a felony. It was no surprise to anyone that Yellowtail lost the election.
NEWS
By Nick Anderson and Nick Anderson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | October 17, 2002
WASHINGTON - The Senate overwhelmingly approved legislation yesterday meant to improve the nation's election systems, clearing it for President Bush's signature despite concerns among some civil rights advocates that the measure could pose new obstacles to voting. The action, following a similar House vote last week, completes the congressional drive to respond to the 2000 presidential election controversy. Flaws in the machinery of American democracy were exposed in that election, as the Florida recount made punch-card ballots and chads infamous and left the contest between Bush and Democrat Al Gore in limbo for more than a month.
NEWS
By Jules Witcover | July 22, 2002
WASHINGTON - Less than four months before voters go to the polls again across the country, Congress has not yet acted on the election reforms that are so badly needed. The fiasco that was the 2000 election demonstrated that. Although the House overwhelmingly (362-63) endorsed a modest updating of election apparatus and practices in December and the Senate did the same in April (99-1), the differences in the two versions of the legislation still must be resolved by a House-Senate conference committee.
NEWS
By William F. Zorzi Jr. and William F. Zorzi Jr.,Sun Staff Writer | July 11, 1995
A group of about 30 angry voters gathered at War Memorial Plaza in Baltimore yesterday to voice their concern over the general election in November, again charging that the gubernatorial race was "stolen" by Democrats and calling for election reform.Carrying placards of protest, the group of Republicans and a few Democrats walked four blocks west to a building that houses the Maryland attorney general's office. There, the protesters denounced the office for defending the election at a trial in January, among other criticisms.
NEWS
By Jules Witcover | May 11, 2001
WASHINGTON -- Mr. Campaign Reform -- Sen. John McCain -- joined the fight against punch-card ballots and their various evil chads and dimples the other day with yet another congressional hearing on how to prevent a repeat of November's Florida presidential election fiasco. The focus once again was on voting equipment and how its shortcomings disenfranchised millions of voters and how voting irregularities of one kind or another deprived minorities of their right to cast ballots and have them counted.
NEWS
By Jules Witcover | March 27, 2002
WASHINGTON -- Not satisfied with enactment of the strongest campaign finance reform since the Watergate years, reformers are about to launch another drive to put backbone in the election enforcement agency that for years has been a pushover for errant candidates and influence-buyers. The idea is to abolish the Federal Election Commission and create a new agency led by a strong-minded independent director with the muscle to achieve real compliance with the new law. The proposal is being crafted by a task force under the aegis of Democracy 21, a pro-reform think tank headed by Fred Wertheimer, a leader in the recently successful drive to curb the flow of unregulated "soft" money into federal elections.
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