Thursday, January 22, 2015

False Start (with an Update)

So much for the “new spirit of bipartisan cooperation,” a platitudinous phrase delivered, apparently bereft of sincerity, by Maryland’s new Governor, Lawrence Joseph Hogan, Jr.

As my policy and media-attentive readers are all too aware, within hours of launching his Administration, the One-Term Express, Hogan:

- Withdrew regulations that protect Maryland citizens from discrimination, based on sexual orientation and gender identity...

- Failed, in his first Executive Order, to include gender identity “as a grounds for equal opportunity.” [Source:]

- And, on another matter, while his move on pulling regulations having to do with phosphorous output was well-received by at least one Democratic State Senator (pump the brakes a little, Senator Mathias), the potential impact of his decision on the health of the Chesapeake Bay and other rivers is not sitting well with environmentally-minded Marylanders.

In short, within days of taking office, Hogan is veering hard right.   This shift is neither promising nor unexpected.

In his Inaugural Address, Hogan stated that we must “set the bar higher.”  Thus far, he is failing in the pursuit of that objective.  Moreover, when he said “Marylanders are hard-wired for inclusiveness,” he is not yet exhibiting evidence of that virtue.  And I would have to imagine that he decided against an appeal to the “better angels of our nature” by his decision to not protect the rights of all of our citizens in his first Executive Order.

Hopefully, others within Hogan’s party will call upon the Governor to live up to the moderate-sounding words he uttered recently in Annapolis.  Perhaps Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman has some thoughts he would like to share on this topic.

Stay tuned, as more will follow.

Update (1/23/15) from Equality Maryland's FB status update:  "Governor Hogan's office has reached out to Equality Maryland to tell us he has re-issued the Executive Order to include gender identity. It should be publicly available by Monday."

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