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Blog Election 2022 Government & Politics

Kittleman Steps Down from Fair Maps Maryland Board to Focus on County Executive Race

Former Howard County Executive Allan H. Kittleman (R) is stepping down as a board member of the anti-gerrymandering group Fair Maps Maryland as he vies to unseat incumbent County Executive Calvin B. Ball III (D), the group announced in a press release Tuesday.

Kittleman will be replaced by Douglas B. Riley (R), a former Baltimore County Council member and former county executive candidate.

Fair Maps Maryland was formed by Kittleman and former state Sen. James Brochin (D-Baltimore County), alongside Doug Mayer, a former communications strategist for Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R). The group is pushing lawmakers to adopt congressional and legislative maps drawn by the Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission, a nine-member, multi-partisan panel that Hogan created via executive order earlier this year. Following several rounds of virtual public hearings, that commission drew congressional and legislative maps that Hogan plans to submit to the General Assembly.

Like others involved with Fair Maps Maryland, Riley has a connection to Hogan: The governor appointed him to the board of trustees of the Community College of Baltimore County in 2019. He was a member of the Baltimore County Council from 1990 to 1998.

“Gerrymandering is wrong, plain and simple, no matter who does it or how righteous they claim to be,” Riley said in a release. “The coming weeks will be critical in our fight for free and fair elections, while politicians in Annapolis attempt to maintain their power and the status quo by keeping Marylanders in the dark. I look forward to working with this organization to shine a light on this process and hold our elected leaders accountable.”

The Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission’s congressional and legislative proposals received an “A” for partisan fairness from the Princeton Gerrymandering Project, but are unlikely to be enacted. Legislative leaders created their own redistricting panel, the Legislative Redistricting Advisory Commission, to draft redistricting proposals for the General Assembly. The legislative commission recently released its final proposed congressional map after a round of public hearings across the state. A draft version of that congressional map received an “F” for partisan fairness from the Princeton analysts.

Lawmakers are set to tackle congressional redistricting in a special session beginning next Monday.

Hogan has said he will oppose any maps that differ from those proposed by the Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission. Hogan can veto congressional maps, but Democrats hold a veto-proof majority in both the House of Delegates and the Senate and easily overrode his vetoes on several measures during the 2021 legislative session.


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Kittleman Steps Down from Fair Maps Maryland Board to Focus on County Executive Race