It took a little longer than I figured it would, but just in time for the 2013 session which starts in just a few weeks I have completed my annual guide to the voting records of the 188 members of the Maryland General Assembly.
There was good news and bad news from this year’s session: obviously the bad news is that a LOT of bad law passed, everything from gay marriage and expanded gambling that we had to vote on in November to usurpation of local control over planning and school funding. But the good news is that, by and large, the Maryland GOP stuck together and became relatively more conservative.
Needless to say, the trick will be figuring out a way to parlay this information into gaining seats in 2014. But those who have seats in more conservative areas but vote with the Annapolis liberal gang of O’Malley, Miller, and Busch should be on notice that we know how you voted and we’re not afraid to spread the word. Moreover, the Republicans who showed a tendency to bend over for the opposition may want to start worrying about primary opponents.
So how did this work and why did it take me so long? As I have done the previous four years, I study what bills the Maryland General Assembly contemplated over the session (including the two Special Sessions this year) and see what votes were among the most contested. You’d be surprised how many bills are passed with votes like 138-0 and 46-0, or with otherwise token opposition. Knowing I would have at least one Special Session I had to hold off and leave room for key votes there so my research couldn’t even begin until the middle of summer. Then we had this little thing called an election I had to cover. I expound a little bit more on the whole process in the introduction.
But it’s done, with the aforementioned introduction, the list of bills and why I would vote as I would (and too few did, for the most part,) the voting tallies, and – of course – legislative awards and admonishments. Feel free to browse the 19 pages and distribute it as you so desire; just give me the credit is all I ask. If you are a Maryland conservative, there’s no question in my mind this information should be close at hand. Spread the word!