Wrongly saying Baltimore reached a deal with the ACLU, Jeff Sessions links rising crime to consent decree

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in speech Wednesday that a civil rights decree designed to reform the Baltimore Police Department was linked to rising crime, calling the city “one of the most tragic examples” of how such agreements impose restrictions on police officers. “Colossal mistakes have been made by politicians and leaders that have had particular catastrophic consequences for the people of cities like Chicago, Baltimore, and St. Louis,” Sessions said, according to a transcript of the speech. (Balt. Sun)

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Montgomery County Council approves new post of climate change director

The Montgomery County Council has given its stamp of approval for the creation of a new staff position that will serve as a liaison between the council, the county executive and county environmental agencies. The council unanimously approved a bill Tuesday to create the post of director of county climate policy. Outgoing County Executive Ike Leggett could sign the bill later this week, although the bill would not take effect until December, when a new county executive is sworn in, a government staffer said. (Bethesda)

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Surprise amendment may have poisoned Anne Arundel compromise on medical marijuana

Legislation reducing restrictions on medical marijuana businesses in north county has broad support, but may be in trouble after a controversial amendment was added. The amendment, which was passed 4-3 Monday by the Anne Arundel County Council, would exempt medical marijuana businesses from residential setback requirements if they are built in industrial districts. County Councilman Jerry Walker, R-Crofton, introduced the amendment after a public hearing on Bill 77-18, which reduces the setback requirements for medical marijuana businesses. (Capital)

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September 19 // Larry Hogan has commanding 22-point lead over Ben Jealous in new poll

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan holds a commanding 22-point lead over Democratic challenger Ben Jealous in a new poll that suggests the Republican is consolidating substantial support from groups that traditionally back Democrats in the deep-blue state. The Goucher Poll, released early Wednesday morning, found likely voters favor Hogan over Jealous by a margin of 54 percent to 32 percent. Undecided voters have dwindled to just 9 percent of the electorate, the poll found, meaning Jealous must win the lion’s share of persuadable voters and bank on dramatically heightened Democratic turnout to have a shot on Election Day. (Wash. Post)

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Judge denies candidate's petition to challenge Cardin again after primary loss

A federal judge has likely put an end to a Maryland man’s plan to run against U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin as a candidate with a new state socialist political party. Jerome Segal’s request for a preliminary injunction in his case against the State Board of Elections was denied Tuesday. Segal, who lost the Democratic primary in June, had asked the court to compel the board to reconsider his petition for candidacy representing the newly founded Bread and Roses Party. With less than two months until the general election, the decision probably marked the end of his bid to appear on the 2018 ballot, Segal said. (News-Post)

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Jealous campaign rescinds veto of Herald-Mail Media reporter from debate

The campaign of Maryland Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ben Jealous on Tuesday night reversed course, rescinding a veto that prevented a Herald-Mail Media reporter from participating in Monday's debate between Jealous and Gov. Larry Hogan. The statement came a day after Jealous' campaign excluded State House reporter Tamela Baker from being part of a panel of news organizations that will ask questions in the debate. The campaign blamed "the entire debate panel selection process" for the temporary ban and said Baker was welcome to participate. The campaign of Hogan, a Republican, responded with a statement accusing the Jealous campaign of trying to "dodge accountability." (Herald-Mail)

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Montgomery resident alleges Floreen violated campaign finance law

A Gaithersburg resident has filed a complaint with the state elections board, alleging a candidate for Montgomery County executive violated campaign finance laws when her campaign committee accepted multiple corporate donations from entities sharing the same addresses. In the complaint, Kenneth Myers alleged Nancy Floreen, who is making an independent bid for the county’s top office, “has accepted multiple contributions from entities that are likely affiliated as a matter of law, greatly exceeding the permissible contribution limits.” The complaint was filed with Jared DeMarinis, the state board’s director of candidacy and campaign finance. DeMarinis confirmed receiving the complaint and said his agency will review it. (Wash. Post)

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Council member Obie Patterson improperly promoted Ben Jealous event, Prince George’s GOP alleges

The Prince George’s County Republican Central Committee filed a complaint Monday against Council member Obie Patterson, alleging that a staffer for the Democratic lawmaker used county resources to invite people to a reception for Democratic gubernatorial nominee Ben Jealous. Shirley Anglin, who works as a citizen-services specialist in Patterson’s office, sent the invitation last week from her county government email address. “Team Patterson 26th District & Democratic Central Committee District 26 cordially invites you to a reception for Democratic candidate Ben Jealous,” the email says. “He’s the right choice that will work for all Marylanders.” (Wash. Post)

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