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NEWS
May 5, 2012
Well, isn't that nice. Maryland's governor and the two lackeys who lead the House and Senate report "progress" on another expensive waste of time to do what should have been in the regular legislative session ("Special session on May 14 looking likely," May 3). Are we played for fools or what? F. Cordell, Lutherville
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NEWS
Jules Witcover | August 8, 2014
The 113th Congress has just slinked out of town for a five-week summer recess, leaving behind its lowest public approval rating in 25 years, according to the latest Washington Post/ABC News Poll. A majority of voters surveyed -- 51 percent -- expressed disgust with their own legislators for their inability to do their job. Only 41 percent said they were pleased with their representative, contradicting the old cliché that voters dislike Congress as a whole but revere their own congressman or congresswoman.
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NEWS
April 13, 2012
I have no problem with the Maryland legislature coming back for a "special session" ("Debacle in Annapolis," April 10). But they have completed their assigned constitutional task of passing a budget. So why would they need a special session? It appears they don't like the "doomsday" budget that they passed. But is that a sufficient reason for recalling the legislature for a special session? Because they don't like something that they did? I don't think so! If a special session is called, it should be done without taxpayer cost.
NEWS
April 16, 2014
Benjamin Todd Jealous claims that Maryland "would have seceded from the Union in 1861 if not for Abraham Lincoln's last-minute decision to impose martial law and arrest 12 members of the General Assembly to prevent them from taking a vote" ( "Maryland: the new South," April 13). Neither claim is accurate. President Lincoln never imposed martial law in Maryland (nor did anyone else) and he specifically instructed the military authorities to allow the Maryland legislature to meet in special session in April 1861 without interference.
EXPLORE
April 26, 2012
The muddle that is Maryland's budget future cleared a bit this week as the three most important people in cleaning up the mess edged closer to an agreement on how to do so. The mess, of course, was left by state lawmakers when they ended the 2012 legislative session April 9 without reaching an agreement on next year's budget. This week, Gov. Martin O'Malley, Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller and House Speaker Michael Busch emerged from a morning meeting to reveal the outline of a solution, one that would involve two special legislative sessions for lawmakers, one to deal with the budget, the other to consider expanding casino gambling in Maryland.
NEWS
May 21, 2012
Do I understand this correctly? We, the people of Maryland, paid for hotels and meals for our representatives in Annapolis because they failed to do the job of passing a reasonable budget and had to meet in special sessions to prevent fiscal "Doomsday. " So, we reward them by treating them to hotel stays and the cost of meals and libation throughout the duration? Don't they all live in our state? Why couldn't they just drive their cars or take public transportation? Most other job holders do commute to and from work, and many bring their own lunches.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | May 2, 2012
Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller has asked members of his Democratic caucus to set aside May 14 and 15 for what he hopes will be a two-days-and-out special session to revive a tax increase bill that died the last night of the regular session and avert more than $500 million in cuts to state programs. Miller put the senators on notice  they can expect to be back in Annapolis those days at a caucus of the chamber's majority Democrats Wednesday morning. The Senate president emphasized that the expected special session this month would deal with budget issues only -- and not with the matter of casino gambling, which contributed to the turmoil of the last days of the session.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | July 24, 2012
As the days dwindle down for calling a special session on expanded gambling, there are no obvious signs of significant progress in reaching a deal the House, Senate and O'Malley administration can all agree on. Last week Gov. Martin O'Malley expressed hope that he could show the Baltimore city House delegation a draft of a proposed casino bill last Wednesday. Nothing was delivered. Then hopes among gambling expansion proponents that the administration would deliver the text of a bill Friday were dashed.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | April 26, 2012
Gov. Martin O'Malley's suggestion that the General Assembly hold two special sessions this year has earned him derision from Republicans but the support of  at least one group -- the state NAACP. The civil rights group on Thursday endorsed the governor's idea of holdiing one session in May to raise taxes and take other steps to avert deep cuts to popular programs and another in latte summer to consider the thorny question of expanded gambling in Maryland. The proposal is now being considered by House Speaker Michael E. Busch and Senate President Thomas V.Mike Miller.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | August 13, 2012
Del. Glen Glass' plans to boycott the special session of General Assembly now entering its second week in Annapolis have gone to the dogs. Soon after Gov. Martin O'Malley announced that he would call a special session of the legislature to deal with the question of expanding gambling, the Harford County lawmaker announced that he planned to stay away in protest. It was an idea that never gained much traction with his Republican colleagues, even though the House GOP leadership opposed the governor's decision to summon legislators back to the State House for the second time since the regular session ended in April.
NEWS
Editorial from The Aegis | January 2, 2014
If the Harford County delegation to Annapolis can be part of preventing a special session of the Maryland General Assembly after the election, they will have at least accomplished something. Partially because they are mostly members of the largely ignored Republican Party in a legislature dominated by Democrats, and partly because some of them are a good deal more fond of political rock throwing than cutting deals to benefit their districts, Harford County's delegation to the General Assembly has been largely ineffectual for several election cycles.
NEWS
December 23, 2013
If Thursday's ruling by the Maryland Board of Elections on which gubernatorial campaigns are allowed to raise money during the upcoming General Assembly session proves anything, it's just how arbitrary Maryland's campaign finance laws are. The board's decision, which can and probably will be appealed in court, held that Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown can't raise money for his gubernatorial campaign during the session because he is a state-level official, but...
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, Baltimore Sun | April 11, 2013
Three days after the General Assembly ended its 2013 legislative session, there's already a call to bring lawmakers back to Annapolis for what would be their fourth special session in a two-year span. Del. Benjamin F. Kramer, a Montgomery County Democrat, wrote Gov. Martin O'Malley Thursday asking him to call a special session to resolve the issue of how to deal with an unpopular Court of Appeals ruling that pit bulls were "inherently dangerous" and that their owners and their owners' landlords could be held to a standard of "strict liability" when one of the animals bites a person.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser | March 20, 2013
Gov. Martin O'Malley's budget for next year was approved by the Senate after an unusually brief debate Wednesday in a sign of the state's improved fiscal condition. Senators voted 42-5 to pass the $36.8 billion budget and send it to a conference committee with the House. All 35 Democrats and seven Republicans voted in favor of the budget, which comes close to eliminating what was once a nearly $2 billion long-term revenue shortfall. "I can't remember any time the budget was adopted by a larger margin.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser and The Baltimore Sun | March 20, 2013
Gov. Martin O'Malley's budget for next year was approved by the Senate after an unusually brief debate Wednesday in a sign of the state's improved fiscal condition. Senators voted 42-5 to pass the $36.8 billion budget and send it to a conference committee with the House. All 35 Democrats and seven Republicans voted in favor of the budget, which comes close to eliminating what was once a nearly $2 billion long-term revenue shortfall. "I can't remember any time the budget was adopted by a larger margin.
NEWS
March 20, 2013
I was not at all surprised to read the headline on the front page of The Sun that "Democrats seek votes to raise gas taxes" (March 17). Take out the word, "gas," and this same headline would be appropriate for every session of the Maryland General Assembly in recent memory. Simply put, they always want to raise more taxes and fees - every year. And when they can't raise taxes enough in the regular session, they have a "special session" like the one Gov. Martin O'Malley called a few years back to raise the sales tax by 20 percent.
NEWS
July 14, 2012
The Sun's headline "Gambling expansion remains in limbo" (July 7) and the accompanying story on efforts to hold a special session on gambling this summer quoted the governor as saying he will "continue to look for a consensus. " That could mean holding a special session at which lawmakers would vote on proposals to authorize a sixth casino in Maryland and allow table games such as poker at all six. Yet the Maryland Constitution, Article II, Section 16 states "the Governor shall convene the Legislature, or Senate alone, on extraordinary occasions.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | February 28, 2013
Gov. Martin O'Malley met Thursday afternoon with the leaders of the Senate and House as the three leaders continued an effort to reach consensus on how to raise money for the depleted Transportation Trust Fund. They aren't quite there yet. "It was a good discussion," said O'Malley chief of staff Matt Gallagher. But he said there was nothing yet to announce. Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller has introduced his own comprehensive transportation revenue plan and has challenged O'Malley and House Speaker Michael E. Busch to make their own proposals.
NEWS
by Annie Linskey | October 12, 2012
Ballot committee reports due today will show that the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force received "support" from Penn National Gaming to send out a mailing over the summer opposing the special session. "I still think it was worth a try," said Darlene Nipper, the Deputy Executive Director of the task force. who confirmed the Penn donation. "We are trying to get marriage across the finish line in Maryland. " Nipper said the reports filed today with Maryland State Board of Elections will show that her group spent about $350,000 on the mailing.
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