Maryland's General Assembly has returned to Annapolis for its annual 90-day session amid a rising tide of partisan rancor. Republican Gov. Larry Hogan has staked out some tough positions on spending and warned the legislature's majority Democrats not to cross him. The Democrats, led by House Speaker Mike Busch and Senate President Mike Miller, have promised to push their own agenda, including mandatory sick leave and pay equity for women.The session also will be colored by election-year politics; not necessarily the presidential race, but the domino effect brought on by Senator Barbara Mikulski's retirement.One Republican delegate has launched a campaign for that seat and four Democratic delegates and a senator are running to fill the Montgomery and Prince Georges County Congressional slots being vacated by Donna Edwards and Chris Van Hollen, who also are running to replace Mikulski.And one senator, Catherine Pugh, has entered the race to replace Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, who is not running for re-election.The session goes through midnight April 11 and WYPR's Rachel Baye will be on hand to cover it.
Annapolis Wrap: marijuana, drivers' licenses, and pit bulls
After a week of intense debate over gun control, the mood in Annapolis lifted considerably today as the overriding concern seemed to be getting to the Orioles’ season-opener this afternoon. But a fair amount of work is also underway.