Former sheriff's office lieutenant vying to become first female sheriff in Anne Arundel history

Saying she wants to "restore honor" to the sheriff's department, Beth Smith on Friday announced she is vying to become the first female sheriff in the 300-year history of the office. Smith, a former lieutenant in the Anne Arundel County Sheriff's Office, will challenge incumbent Sheriff Ron Bateman, who was acquitted last year of allegations that he assaulted his wife. (Capital)

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Group aimed at training Democratic women yields 6 Anne Arundel candidates

Upcoming local and state elections this year and next have already spurred a wave of candidates filing or announcing a run for office. At least a half-dozen are graduates of an organization that aims to help more Democratic women get elected in Maryland and across the country. So far, six alumnae of Emerge Maryland have announced their intentions to run for office in Annapolis and Anne Arundel County in 2017 or 2018, including former school board members Debbie Ritchie and Allison Pickard. (Capital)

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Former liquor board chairman pleads guilty to drunken driving charges

The former Prince George’s County liquor board chairman involved in a crash outside the MGM National Harbor in December has pleaded guilty to drunken driving charges. Charles W. Caldwell III, 73, appeared in Prince George’s County Circuit Court to enter his plea Friday to driving while impaired, about five months after his arrest on the opening night of the new casino. (Wash. Post)

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Protesters rally against Harris’s vote for GOP’s health care bill

Around 30 protesters rallied outside the Harford County office of U.S. Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md.-1st, May 8 to voice frustration over the congressman’s vote in favor of the Republican health care bill, the American Health Care Act of 2017. Though Harris was not inside his Bel Air office — he was in Washington, D.C. — protesters continued chanting, criticizing his vote on health care. (Star-Democrat)

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May 19 // Behind closed doors, Al Franken, Kirsten Gillibrand blast Rosenstein for withholding information

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s meeting with senators on Thursday grew especially heated when he faced questions from two frustrated liberal Democrats, according to multiple people familiar with the meeting. Rosenstein came to Capitol Hill to discuss the firing of FBI Director James B. Comey and his decision to hire Robert Mueller as a special counsel to probe Russian meddling in last year’s elections. He briefed U.S. senators in what they call “the SCIF,” or a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility, a below-ground facility in the Capitol Visitors Center that has an area large enough to hold all 100 senators. (Wash. Post)

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Senators say Rosenstein knew Comey would be fired before he wrote his memo

Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein knew James B. Comey would be fired as director of the FBI before he wrote a scathing memo laying out the case for the move, several senators who attended a closed-door briefing with the former U.S. attorney from Maryland said Thursday. The motivation and timing of Rosenstein's three-page memo has been scrutinized because the White House offered inconsistent explanations for it. At first, the administration said President Donald Trump based his decision on the memo when he fired Comey last week, The memo criticized the FBI's handling of the investigation into a private email server used by Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. (Balt. Sun)

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Montgomery County taxpayers are spared hike in new county budget

A year after approving an 8.7 percent property-tax increase that helped fuel a successful campaign for term limits, the Montgomery County Council passed a $5.4 billion budget Thursday that won’t impose new hardship on taxpayers’ wallets. The average annual residential tax bill will increase by less than $2 a month in the fiscal year that begins July 1. Overall, county government spending will increase by 2.7 percent, compared with 5.1 percent this year. Much of last year’s tax hike was used for what council members called an “education-first” budget that reduced class size and tried to close the achievement gap. (Wash. Post)

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Former school board member launches Anne Arundel council campaign

A former school board member is the first candidate to file for Anne Arundel County Council's District 3 seat, one of four that will be wide open in 2018. Debbie Ritchie, who served on the Anne Arundel County Board of Education from 2010 to 2016, recently launched her campaign in the district, which covers Pasadena, Jacobsville, Riviera Beach and Gibson Island. Councilman Derek Fink, a Republican who represents the district, is serving out his second term and is barred by term limits from running again. Three other councilmen — John Grasso, R-Glen Burnie; Chris Trumbauer, D-Annapolis; and Jerry Walker, R-Crofton, will also be termed out in 2018. (Capital)

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