Let the Chaos and Lawlessness Begin
By J. Alexandra Tuttle
It’s that time of year again, when the flurry of legislative activity is in full swing in the Maryland General Assembly. As of February 9th at 5:00 pm, over 1,500 bills had been introduced in the House and slightly over 1,000 bills in the Senate, not counting some of the more troublesome joint resolutions. If there was a theme with regard to some of the legislation offered by the Democrat-controlled legislature, perhaps it would be “Let the chaos and lawlessness begin!”
Let me explain why.
The Montgomery County Delegation doesn’t think much of the Montgomery County Council’s term limits initiative that Democrats and Republicans voted for on the November ballot, amending the county’s charter. In fact, your Montgomery County Delegation must believe that voters need the Council’s expertise, so this legislation HB 348 (hearing 2/16) would seek to stagger their terms – a change from electing all 9 members at the same time every 4 years, by amending the Maryland State Constitution, Article XVII, section 2 – and would be voted on in the General Election in 2018, leaving potential candidates in limbo.
The County Delegation is, in essence, seeking to circumvent the will of the people by introducing this legislation.
Other legislation, such as HB 741(hearing 3/2 – Ways and Means) and SB 938 (hearing 3/2 – Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs), would allow for automatic voter registration at various agencies, including social service to be sent to the Board of Elections – “… unless the applicant declines to register to vote or update voter information or is determined not to be eligible to vote. “
One can only imagine how the conversation between a social services agent (for example) and a person seeking assistance from the government would go. Currently, there no proof of citizenship requirement, let alone picture ID, and the honor system continues to prevail in Maryland. Now let’s flood the voter rolls, election integrity be damned.
SJ 5 and HJ 3 (which is moving), the Attorney General (AG) Powers – Maryland Defense Act would essentially grant unlimited power to the Attorney General (Brian Frosh) to investigate, commence and prosecute any civil or criminal action based on the Federal Government’s action or inaction that threatens the public interest and welfare of the RESIDENTS of the state – on a broad range of issues, including “protecting the residents (they don’t have to be citizens) of the state against illegal and unconstitutional federal immigration and travel restrictions.”
The Governor would be notified, but if the Attorney General determined emergency circumstances were warranted, then the AG could begin immediate commencement of a suit or action. Interestingly enough, HB 913/SB 665(hearing on HB 913- 2/15 House Health and Government) seeks to do the same but requests the Governor’s budget provide $1,000,000 to employ 5 extra attorneys to help the Attorney General take away that power from the Governor and the General Assembly.
This partisan legislation seeks to amend the Maryland State Constitution in order to circumvent federal law.
HB 272, would establish sanctuary campus status for public institutions of higher education, providing all sorts of monetary services and protections to students and employees for students, most of those notably under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Should DACA be reversed, the legislation, if enacted, would codify the right to refuse to all ICE employees on school campuses, without 10 days notification and paperwork. Additionally, this new entitlement program for FY2018, would have taxpayers on the hook for legal, financial , and health insurance stipends and housing for these students.
The Democrats also continue to make inroads to erode Second Amendment rights. For example, HB 159 concerning Weapons Free Higher-Education Zones is currently moving through the House. Supporters of this legislation don’t want people to protect themselves, even if they have a Protective Order or a Peace Order, on college campuses. If caught with a firearm, criminal penalties would include 3 years of imprisonment and a $1,000 fine – plus, you would never have the right to bear arms again.
Delegate Moon and Senator Feldman think that we need a Constitutional Amendment concerning the right to use, possess and cultivate cannabis. They also plan to tax it like they do cigarettes, for education in public schools, etc. Hmmm. A hearing on HB 1236 will be held in the House Judiciary on 3/7 and SB 891 will be heard in the Senate 3/2 during Senate Judicial Proceedings. Drunk driving doesn’t seem to be a problem, so I’m sure that drug impaired drivers won’t be either.