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Ready, entire Carroll delegation brief County Republicans on 'extreme' legislative session
On Saturday morning, Senator Justin Ready and the entire Carroll delegation briefed County Republicans on the extreme legislative session that wrapped up on April 10th, during a breakfast hosted by Republican Central Committee Chair Joe Leeman at the Winfield Fire Hall in Sykesville.
Ready: extreme DC politics coming to Annapolis
Ready, who previously characterized his role in leftist Annapolis as that of a disciple, said it is absolutely necessary that conservatives go to war everyday to hold the Democrats who are in charge accountable, confirming that socialism, radical gender ideology, critical race theory, and extreme DC style politics otherwise are on the march in Annapolis.
He said the General Assembly has been fully co-opted by hardened lefty radicals who often act immune to any kind of public pressure, and only care what radical activists groups think, especially when it comes to crime, a likely reference to Senate Bill 1, which effectively bans law-abiding citizens in Maryland from carrying a firearm in public on the false notion that less guns in the stream of commerce results in less gun violence overall, a finding from a study conducted by the partisan Johns Hopkins University Center for Gun Violence Solutions, which one of SB1’s sponsors, Montgomery County Democrat Senator Jeff Waldstreicher, cited in debates with Ready on the Senate floor.
Otherwise part of the radical left-turn noted by Ready was the passing of Senate Bill 798, which will enshrine the right to an abortion up until the point of birth as a constitutional right in Maryland if the State’s voters approve it on a referendum coming next year, and Senate Bill 290, which will strip locally elected State’s Attorneys of their ability to prosecute police officers who wrongly kill civilians, handing that authority over to the State level Attorney General despite 23 of 24 local State’s Attorneys in Maryland, including Carroll’s Haven Shoemaker, opposing the bill.
Despite the setbacks, Ready did cite the failing of House Bill 119, which would have forced local jurisdictions to teach gender identity to public elementary school children or else have part of their State funding withheld, as good news, before reminding everyone that a defeatist mentality solves nothing.
He concluded, saying constitutional principles matter, and a message accordingly always achieves something, as he channeled a verse from the book of Isaiah which says that God’s word when spoken out never returns void.
Rose: a brutal 90 day session
Between far-left Governor Wes Moore’s minimum wage hike from $13.25 to $15 which will be forced even on small businesses come January 1st, runaway per-pupil spending in Baltimore City Public Schools on ghost students, the $1.5B deficit creating educational Blueprint for Maryland’s Future, and sweeping changes to Maryland’s paid family leave program, Delegate April Rose, who serves on the Economic Matters Committee, called this legislative session brutal and lacking in common sense.
She spoke in particular about Maryland’s paid family leave program, called the Time to Care Act, which will require employers and employees to evenly pay into an Aflac insurance program through the Maryland Department of Labor to fund the mandated leave that is 12 weeks long and can be up to 24 weeks, without even requiring employees to first exhaust their personal time off, foisting exorbitant costs onto small businesses who are less able to absorb the expenses relative to their big corporate counterparts.
Concluding on a positive note, she thanked Carroll County for being the greatest place to live and raise a family in Maryland.
Bouchat: no gerrymandering, no legislator intoxication
Freshman Delegate Eric Bouchat, formerly the lone Carroll County Commissioner to resist unscientific and damaging mask mandates, warned that computer generated gerrymandering will keep Republicans as a super-minority indefinitely unless something can be done to reverse the algorithmically generated voter-blocs. He lamented how Democrats hold local bills hostage, and underscored the importance of the Republican Central Committee to grow the base of conservative voters.
A recovering alcoholic, Bouchat appears to have taken issue with Anne Arundel County Delegate Nic Kipke’s alleged intoxication on the House floor during a squabble with House Speaker Adrienne Jones as the midnight hour approached on the last day of session, as shown by his planned proposal to criminalize legislators under the influence of alcohol on the Statehouse floor starting in 2024.
Tomlinson: Dems decriminalizing everything
Fellow freshman Delegate Chris Tomlinson, who sits on the Judiciary Committee alongside Bouchat, said there was a major push in Annapolis to decriminalize or soften the penalties for seemingly everything. He pointed out the Redeem Act, ie. Senate Bill 0037, which was sponsored by the aforementioned Waldstreicher, which reduces the wait period to have certain offenses expunged from one’s record, and new regulations around recreational cannabis use, which makes it so that driving while stoned, even with children in the car, is effectively permitted.
Tomlinson did have two of his own bills get all the way through. One requires municipalities to send their election results to the Maryland State Board of Elections for easy public consumption on the State’s website, and another, co-sponsored by Rose, which adjusts the value of what constitutes a small procurement for State agencies, increasing the number from $50,000 to $100,000, the details of which Tomlinson explained after a directed probe by former Delegate candidate Sallie Taylor.
West: Republicans screwed up last election cycle
Senator Chris West, who straddles Baltimore and Carroll Counties, attributed the radically left legislative session to the failure of Maryland Republicans last election cycle for nominating candidates in the primary he said were not electable at the State level, thus leading Democrats to believe their radical policies were validated by voters at the ballot box.
West previously wrote at length on the electability issue, disparaging the campaign of former gubernatorial candidate Dan Cox whose campaign West said amounted to political malpractice. This despite the fact that Cox’s campaign received virtually no support from the Maryland Republican Party, whose leadership has since completely turned over.
Stonko: need to attack spending
Another Freshman Delegate, Josh Stonko, who serves on the House Appropriations Committee, said there was no full court press from the Democrats on the spending side as compared to the policies they forced through other committees. He otherwise echoed Rose, confirming that the number one issue on the spending front is the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future.