Super PAC created in support of Nancy Floreen’s independent run for Montgomery County executive

Deep-pocketed supporters of Nancy Floreen's independent bid for county executive have a powerful, new way of giving her a boost—by pouring unlimited amounts of money into a super PAC recently created to help her candidacy. The County Above Party PAC established Aug. 29 is chaired by Charles K. Nulsen III, president of the development firm Washington Property Co. and an early backer of Floreen's campaign. (Bethesda)

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No escaping political subtext as panel on regulating booze debuts

A task force on alcohol regulation in Maryland, meeting for the first time on Wednesday, heard expert testimony about the societal ills associated with excess drinking. And it was a long list. One slide showed that alcohol-related deaths in Maryland tripled from 2007 to 2016, to 582 a year. Another reported that binge drinking is rising among adults 26 and older, and that "years of life lost to death and disability because of alcohol use" increase nearly 7 percent from 2000 to 2016. (Md. Matters)

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September 13 // Embattled Democratic senator’s re-election strategy — tout support of Hogan

A new campaign mailing supports a Democratic state senator in a key district by stressing her support for Republican Gov. Larry Hogan. That large glossy mailer that landed in the 8th Legislative District of Baltimore County touts Sen. Kathy Klausmeier as a bipartisan lawmaker who “stood up to the party bosses by teaming up with Governor Hogan.” Photos on the piece prominently feature Klausmeier, a Democrat, with Hogan. The message in support of Klausmeier highlights the sometimes conflicting objectives of Democratic legislative leaders, such as Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr., who wish to protect fellow Democrats while also trying to help the party’s nominee for governor. (Daily Record)

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Just 227 signatures short, new socialist party files lawsuit to get onto Maryland ballot

Since the turn of the century, Maryland has had — with the exception of a few years — four political parties whose candidates automatically appear on the general election ballot: the Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians and Greens. A fifth could be coming soon. The Bread and Roses Party, a self-identified socialist group, is 227 certified signatures away from the 10,000 it needs to get onto the ballot in Maryland. The party has submitted 19,500 signatures to the Maryland Board of Elections, and 9,773 have been certified. (Balt. Sun)

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Congressional candidate David Trone has cancer surgery, expects to miss 'a few weeks' of campaigning

David Trone, the Democratic nominee for Maryland’s open 6th District congressional seat, underwent cancer surgery and expects to miss up to a few weeks of campaigning, his campaign said Wednesday. "David's surgery was a success,” the campaign said in a statement released upon request. “He’s recuperating with his family, and he expects to be back on the campaign trail within a few weeks." The surgery Tuesday followed Trone’s Aug. 27 announcement that he had “localized cancer” and had undergone chemotherapy to reduce a tumor in his urinary tract. (Balt. Sun)

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Mayor, city council clash over Main Street bike lane

In a town keen on historic preservation, a debate over a Main Street bike lane is fast turning into a test of tolerance for Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley’s agenda for rapid change. The disclosure this week that Buckley’s temporary bike lane “experiment” was not reviewed by the Historic Preservation Commission and has already involved a $76,000 outlay — including the purchase of bistro tables for outdoor restaurant seating — brought a swift reaction from members of the City Council. Alderwoman Elly Tierney, D-Ward 1, said she plans to meet with the city attorney, and Alderman Ross Arnett, D-Ward 8, called an emergency finance committee meeting for Thursday morning. (Capital)

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Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh: 'You can smell the rats'

Video footage of Mayor Catherine Pugh touring an East Baltimore neighborhood has gone viral after she is heard making some indelicate remarks. The segment, which looks back on the mayor’s violence-reduction initiative rolled out last year, was filmed last week and aired this week on Fox 45. In the footage, Pugh tours an area of vacant houses with city leaders and says: “What the hell? We should just take all this [expletive] down.” (Balt. Sun)

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Baltimore to pay $1.1 million after losing First Amendment case involving pregnancy clinic signs

Baltimore’s spending board voted Wednesday to pay $1.1 million to cover a Christian pregnancy center’s legal fees after a federal court ruled a city law violated the center’s First Amendment rights. The Greater Baltimore Center for Pregnancy Concerns sued the city and the case wound its way through the legal system for nearly a decade before the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in January. The organization challenged the city after it passed a law in 2009 designed to require pregnancy clinics that don't provide abortions to post signs in their waiting rooms to disclose that information. (Balt. Sun)

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