Message From Governor Larry Hogan
The month of November was full of activity and passed quickly – we can’t believe that it’s already December! I would like to thank all Marylanders for your support, and we look forward to four more years of changing Maryland for the better.
This month, we continued to fight for free and fair elections across the state. I signed an Executive Order continuing our push for nonpartisan redistricting reform after a court ruled that Maryland’s 6th Congressional District is unconstitutionally gerrymandered. I also declared November as Hire a Veteran Month here in Maryland and participated in the National Governors Association Seminar for New Governors. Read about these initiatives and more below!
As we enter the holiday season, the First Lady and I would like to invite everyone to our Holiday Open House at Government House tomorrow, December 8th, for wonderful decorations and delicious holiday cookies. Click here for more information.
Be sure to stay up to date on what’s going on by following my Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram account, and Snapchat (username: LarryHogan).
See you next month!
Fighting for Free and Fair Elections
Governor Larry Hogan signed Executive Order 01.01.2018.29 creating an Emergency Commission on Sixth Congressional District Gerrymandering, a nonpartisan commission to comply with a federal court order requiring Maryland to draw new boundaries for the 6th Congressional District. The governor also announced his intent to reintroduce legislation to create a permanent nonpartisan redistricting process for both congressional and legislative districts on the first day of the 2019 session of the Maryland General Assembly.
The governor was joined by Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford; the co-chairs of the Maryland Redistricting Reform Commission Judge Alexander Williams, who was appointed by President Clinton to the U.S. District Court in Maryland and Walter Olson, a senior fellow at the CATO Institute’s Center for Constitutional Studies; and League of Women Voters administrator Ashley Oleson, who also served on the commission established by the governor in 2015.
In November 2018, a three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court ruled unanimously in the case of Benisek v. Lamone that Maryland’s 6th Congressional District is unconstitutional and must be redrawn prior to the 2020 election, giving a deadline of March 7, 2019. In his opinion, Chief Judge James K. Bredar referred to the type of partisan gerrymandering that had been inflicted on the voters of the 6th District a “cancer on our democracy.”
“Free and fair elections are the very foundation of American democracy and the most basic promise that those in power can pledge to the citizens we represent,” said Governor Hogan. “This unanimous ruling was a victory for the overwhelming majority of Marylanders who value fairness and balance in our political system – who are fed up with the divisive partisan politics that are used to suppress any honest debate or real competition of ideas.”
Governor Larry Hogan joined with Maryland State Police Superintendent Colonel William Pallozzi, Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administrator (MDOT MVA) Christine Nizer, highway safety advocates, and the family members of victims of impaired driving crashes for the 15th Annual Maryland Remembers ceremony. The event honors the lives of those killed on Maryland’s roads by drunk or drugged drivers. About 100 guests filled the State House Rotunda for this special ceremony. Governor Hogan also presented the Kevin Quinlan Award to Dr. Beth Baker, Former Regional Administrator of the National Transportation Highway Safety Administration (NTSHA), for her work and advocacy in preventing impaired driving.
“We are gathered here today to ensure that these loved ones will never be forgotten,” said Governor Hogan. “We are also here because – together – we will never stop fighting to prevent more needless deaths from drunk or drugged driving.”
In the coming legislative session, the Hogan administration will again introduce the Repeat Drunk Driving Offenders Act, which creates a felony offense punishable by up to 10 years for anyone convicted of a drunk or drugged driving offense on three or more prior occasions, as well as anyone convicted of causing a death or a life-threatening injury on their second and/or subsequent offenses.
Remembering President George H.W. Bush
“It is with incredible sadness that we learn of the passing of President George H.W. Bush, a true patriot and statesman who embodied the decency and selfless service of America’s Greatest Generation.
“As a decorated World War II veteran and Navy pilot, a two-term congressman who served alongside my dad in the U.S. House of Representatives, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, and Ambassador to the United Nations, he built his lasting reputation as the consummate public servant. As our nation’s 43rd vice president and 41st president, who helped bring an end to the Cold War, President Bush solidified his legacy of principled, pragmatic, and compassionate leadership.
“George H.W. Bush’s lifetime of service and decades of dedication to honor and duty leave an indelible mark on our nation and on our hearts. He will always represent the very best America has to offer in public life: toughness with civility, firmness with kindness, and strength of conviction with force of character.
“The First Lady and I join all Marylanders in sending our deepest condolences to the Bush family as they – and our entire nation – mourn this great loss. We all take comfort knowing that he is joining his beloved wife, Barbara.” – Governor Larry Hogan
The governor directed American and Maryland flags be flown at half-staff immediately through December 30th to mark President George H.W. Bush’s passing.