Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Maryland's In, Montana's Out and Kansas is in Limbo

As I discussed in my post last week, both the Senate (SB 1025) and House (HB 1434) plans to move Maryland's 2008 presidential primary to February 12 had passed both chambers. Little else was clear however. A check today though revealed that the Senate bill was signed into law by Governor O'Malley on April 24. This is documented in the link to the bill above, but is not verified through the press releases posted on the governor's website. At this point, it looks as though Maryland has joined Virginia for a mini-regional primary the week after the February 5 smörgåsbord.

Futher west, the plan (HB 797) to give the Montana secretary of state the authority to set the date of the 2008 presidential primary some time in February or March died on the Senate side. After passing the House, the plan was transmitted to the Senate and referred to the State Administration Committee where several hearings were scheduled and canceled. The bill was deemed dead in the committee on April 27.

Things are a bit more muddled in Kansas. Last week the House passed a substituted appropriations bill (SB 357) that included language requiring the secretary of state to certify to the governor and legislative leaders before November 1 of this year that the state would not only hold a 2008 presidential primary but that it would be held on February 2. Here's the rub though: The bill's history indicates that the bill has been passed around both chambers subsequently, yet the link above is still to the House substituted version. Several of those actions taken since last week took place today (May 2), so an update is warranted once the legislature's website is updated with an altered (potentially) bill.

In the other states likely to move, nothing new has occurred.

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