Supreme Court Hands Down Major Decision Reaffirming Abortion Rights

The Supreme Court announced a major ruling on abortion, deciding that the Louisiana law is unconstitutional and should not stand. The opinion was written by Justice Stephen Breyer, joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan. Chief Justice John Roberts also filed an opinion concurring for the majority. The case, June Medical Services v. Russo, was a challenge to a Louisiana law that required abortion providers have admitting privileges with a nearby hospital -- an agreement between a doctor and a hospital that allows a patient to go that hospital if they need urgent care. (ABC/Wbal)

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Hogan to return to Board of Public Works as lobbying mounts against $672 million in cuts to upcoming budget

Republican Gov. Larry Hogan will preside over the state Board of Public Works this Wednesday amid intense lobbying against his proposals to cut $672 million from the upcoming state budget because of an economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Advocates for education and state employees, as well as others who favor waiting to get more data about the state’s incoming revenues and possible assistance from the federal government, are urging Hogan’s fellow board members to vote against the cuts — or to at least postpone action. (Balt Sun)

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Federal appeals court upholds Maryland’s ban on bump stocks

A federal appeals court on Monday upheld Maryland’s ban on bump stocks and other devices that make guns fire faster, a state law that preceded a nationwide ban. Both bans responded to the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. A divided three-judge panel from the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected claims by gun owners’ rights advocates that Maryland’s law violates the Fifth Amendment’s prohibition on taking private property for public use without just compensation. (Balt Sun)

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Former Maryland congressman calls for Prince George’s County to change name of James Ryder Randall Elementary School

Former Maryland Rep. Albert Wynn said he is in favor of changing the name of James Ryder Randall Elementary School in Prince George’s County to something more representative of the local community. The school is located in Clinton, which is about 16 miles from Washington, D.C. Randall, for whom the school is named, wrote a poem in 1861 whose lyrics later became the basis for Maryland’s state song-Maryland, My Maryland. The song is considered to be pro-Confederate. Efforts to do away symbolism reflective of the Confederacy and individuals associated with the promotion of slavery have picked up steam since the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd last month. (Md Reporter)

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Hogan outlines $1.45 billion in budget cuts to grapple with economic downturn

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has pitched an enormous revision to the state’s spending plan that would put government workers on furlough, sell off aircraft to raise cash and eliminate 92 vacant jobs to help address the funding shortfall caused by the coronavirus shutdown. State forecasters say as much as $1.2 billion of state revenue could evaporate amid the economic crisis triggered by the pandemic. To mitigate that, Hogan (R) outlined $1.45 billion worth of cuts to Maryland’s $19.5 billion general fund, part of the $47.9 billion budget that takes effect Wednesday. (Wash Post)

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Supreme Court Gives President More Control Over Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

The Supreme Court on Monday dealt a blow to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as conceived by President Barack Obama and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, making it easier for the agency’s leader to be removed for any reason. In a 5-4 opinion authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, the court struck down part of the law that established a CFPB director who could only be fired for “inefficiency, neglect of duty or malfeasance in office.” (ABC/Wbal)

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Maryland Gov. Hogan proposes cutting state spending by $1.45B, cites economic downturn from coronavirus pandemic

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan proposed $1.45 billion in budget cuts across state government Friday, including eliminating employee raises, cutting vacant positions and slashing funding for programs ranging from school security to prosecuting violent crime in Baltimore. Hogan proposed the changes in advance of a meeting Wednesday of the state Board of Public Works, which has the authority to cut the budget. A total of $672 million of the cuts are scheduled for a vote at the meeting, with action on the remaining proposals possible in the future. (Balt Sun)

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New Maryland laws target issues ranging from policing to special education to flooding

Even though the Maryland General Assembly ended its annual session weeks early back in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, lawmakers passed more than 600 bills this year. Most of the new laws go into effect Oct. 1, but dozens take effect Wednesday, as the state begins a new fiscal year. Some of the new laws are routine, such as tweaks to local liquor regulations and technical adjustments to state programs. (Balt Sun)

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