We round up some of the schedule changes in place on this Presidents Day. Plus, a look at the results of a Baltimore Sun / Opinionworks poll on the governor’s race, the state Attorney General’s race, and the 2016 presidential race. Plus: fundraising, deportations, wildlands, freemasons, and more.
Presidents Day Schedule Changes: Today is Presidents Day; government offices are closed on the federal and state levels to mark the holiday. Most local government offices are closed as well, including those in Baltimore City and Baltimore County. Courts and banks are closed as well, and there’s no regular mail delivery from the Post Office. Trash collection is going on as usual in most jurisdictions; and in Baltimore, it’s a makeup pickup day for folks whose trash wasn’t picked up on Friday, because of the snow. The Baltimore Sun has more here. There are changes in store for public transit as well… with no MARC trains on the Camden and Brunswick lines, and Sunday schedules in effect for the Penn Line. The only commuter bus route operating is route 201, and it’s on a holiday schedule.
Deportations Higher In Maryland, And Governor Asks Why: WYPR's Fraser Smith and John Fritze of the Baltimore Sun talk about the higher number of Maryland-based undocumented immigrants deported under the federal program Secure Communities, and Governor O'Malley's letter to the Obama Administration requesting an explanation. It’s this morning’s edition of Inside Maryland Politics.
No Fundraising For Brown Campaign During General Assembly Session: Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown says that his gubernatorial campaign will not raise money while the General Assembly is in session. State law forbids state-level office holders from fundraising during the legislative session – and while that affects Brown, it doesn’t affect his running mate, Howard County Executive Ken Ulman. Earlier, the Brown campaign had said that Ulman would raise money during the session; but on Saturday, Brown says that his campaign “never intended” for that to happen. Brown now says that Ulman has halted fundraising activities and won’t start them back up until the session’s over. There’s more here from the Baltimore Sun and here from the Washington Post.
Governor’s Race Poll: The Baltimore Sun has released the results of an opinion poll on the governor’s race. The Opinionworks survey of likely voters puts Lieutenant Governor Brown in the lead for the Democratic party’s nomination – with 35 percent saying they’d cast ballots for Brown, if the election was held today. State Attorney General had the support of 14 percent of likely Democratic voters, with 10 percent saying they’d vote for Montgomery County Delegate Heather Mizeur. But there are a lot of undecided voters – 40 percent of likely Democratic voters say they haven’t made up their mind, and analysts say that means it’s still anybody’s race. The race for the Republican nomination is even more wide open – with 68 percent of likely voters surveyed saying they’re undecided. The leader in the GOP race is founder of Change Maryland Larry Hogan, with 13 percent of the vote. Harford County Executive David Craig had 7 percent, Anne Arundel County Delegate Ron George had 6 percent, and Charles County businessman Charles Lollar had 5 percent. Maryland’s primary election is set for June 24th.
Attorney General’s Race Poll: The Sun’s Opinionworks poll also examined the Attorney General’s race – where there are no Republican candidates. 69 percent of likely Democratic voters say have not made a decision yet. Delegate Jon Cardin is in the lead for his party’s nomination, with 18 percent of likely voters saying they’d support him; however, the Sun notes that it’s unclear how much of that lead comes from Cardin’s name recognition; he’s the nephew of US Senator Ben Cardin. The other Democrats in the race polled in the single digits, with 6 percent backing State Senator Brian Frosh, 4 percent supporting Delegate Bill Frick, and 3 percent saying they’d vote for Delegate Aisha Braveboy.
Presidential Race Poll: Political watchers expect Governor Martin O'Malley to run for the presidency in 2016… but the new Sun Opinionworks poll shows that he wouldn’t win the Democratic primary in Maryland if the election was held today. The poll shows that just 6 percent of likely Democratic voters would cast ballots for O’Malley; former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had the support of 59 percent of the voters surveyed. The margin of error for all these polls is 4.4 percentage points.
Wildlands Expansion Moves Forward In Annapolis: A bill that would expand Maryland’s network of legally protected wildlands is moving forward in the General Assembly. The bill was put forth by Governor Martin O’Malley’s administration. It would create nine new wildlands sites, and expand 14 existing sites. In those sites, development is forbidden, as is the use of motor vehicles. However, hiking, hunting, and horseback riding are allowed within them. The Baltimore Sun reports that State Senate approved the legislation unanimously on Friday. It now moves on to the House of Delegates. There's more here from the Washington Post.
Obama To Visit MD Tomorrow: President Barack Obama will be in Maryland on Tuesday, to talk about the economy. The Baltimore Sun reports that the president plans to make his remarks in Prince George’s County. No additional details of the speech have been released. This will be the fourth time that Obama has visited to Maryland in the last four weeks.
Masons Conference: An annual Conference of Grand Masters of Masons is underway in Baltimore. More than 500 leaders of the nation's two-million Freemasons are holding their 101st meeting at the Marriott Waterfront Hotel through tomorrow. 2nd District Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger is a member of the secretive society, and is attending the convention. The Congressman tells the Baltimore Sun: "Masons help build what's best in the human character."
Collision At BWI: Officials at BWI say one worker was slightly injured when a vehicle used to tow planes from the airport gate to the runway ran into an American Airlines jet. The collision happened yesterday afternoon as the flight was preparing to depart for Dallas. No passengers were injured. There’s more here from the Annapolis Capital and here from the Baltimore Sun.
Venison Donations Used To Feed Howard County’s Needy: The donations of hundreds of pounds of venison are feeding more than 800 families in Howard County. The meat comes from Howard County’s sharpshooting program, which helps maintain a stable white-tailed deer population on County land. The venison is processed in Westminster then sent to nonprofit organizations for distribution to needy residents. Howard County’s Department of Recreation and Parks says the program processes more than three-thousand pounds of venison a year. The Baltimore Sun has more here.