36 Republicans Are Perfect in Business Group’s Legislative Scorecard

Thirty-six members of the Maryland General Assembly – all Republicans – have voted in lockstep with small business interests over the past four years, according to a newly-released scorecard from the National Federation of Independent Business. The NFIB Maryland chapter scored state lawmakers on their votes on 15 key bills over the four-year legislative term, including elimination of the so-called Rain Tax, business tax incentives and earned sick leave. The scorecard was released Wednesday – just in time for Election Day.   “This past legislative term showed small business priorities were front and center throughout these past four years,” said Mike O’Halloran, NFIB Maryland state director. “Many NFIB priorities were acted upon, but some Annapolis proposals show that there are legislators who do not understand the difficulties facing our state’s small businesses.” Republican scores were demonstrably higher than Democrats’, but some Democrats scored fairly well. Anne Arundel Sen. Bryan Simonaire had the lowest Republican score for the four-year term, a 75. The highest Democratic scores in the state Senate belonged to Sens. James Brochin (Baltimore County), James E. DeGrange Sr. (Anne Arundel) and Katherine A. Klausmeier (Baltimore County), who each voted with NFIB 67 percent of the time. Brochin lost a bid for Baltimore County executive in the Democratic primary, DeGrange is retiring, and Klausmeier is in a tough reelection battle with Del. Christian J. Miele (R), who scored 79 percent on the NFIB chart. The lowest scores on the Senate list, 29 percent, were from Sens. Barbara A. Robinson (D-Baltimore City) and William C. Smith Jr. (D-Montgomery). But both were former House members who were appointed to the Senate in the middle of the legislative term. The lowest scores for senators who served the full four years, 33 percent, belonged to Sen. Roger Manno (D-Montgomery) and Sen. Paul G. Pinsky (D-Prince George’s). In the House, the lowest Republican scores, 79 percent, were rung up by Miele and Dels. Andrew Cassilly (Harford), Rick Impallaria (Baltimore County) and Herbert McMillan (Anne Arundel). The highest Democratic scores, 62 percent, belonged to two moderates: Baltimore County Del. Eric Bromwell and Anne Arundel Del. Ned Carey. The lowest Democratic score, 33 percent, belonged to Baltimore City Del. Nick Mosby. But he joined the legislature two years ago. The lowest score for a Democrat who served for the full four years belonged to House Economic Matters Chairman Dereck E. Davis (Prince George’s), who is generally considered pro-business relative to the rest of the Democratic caucus. Davis missed two of NFIB’s scored votes, contributing to his 42 rating. Click here to see the scorecard. [email protected]

Josh Kurtz
Co-founder and Editor Josh Kurtz is the leading chronicler of Maryland politics and government. He began covering the State House in 1995 for The Gazette newspapers, and has been writing about state and local politics ever since. He later became an editor at Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper, and spent eight years at E&E News, an online subscription-only publisher of news websites covering energy and environmental issues. For seven of those years, he led a staff of 20 reporters at E&E Daily, which covers energy and environmental policy on Capitol Hill and in national politics. For 6 1/2 years he wrote a weekly column on state politics for Center Maryland and has written for several other Maryland publications as well. Kurtz has given speeches and appeared on TV and radio shows about Maryland politics through the years.

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