Sunday, April 12, 2015

Maryland House Agrees to Senate Changes, Passes Late April Presidential Primary Bill

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (R) will now have two presidential primary bills before him after the state House concurred on Friday, April 10 with Senate changes and passed the its bill to move the election back three weeks.

The Maryland state House passed an amended version of HB 396 that is now identical to its Senate companion, SB 204. The bills, whether one or both are signed, would shift the Maryland presidential primary from the first Tuesday in April to the fourth Tuesday in April. The original intent of the legislation in both cases was to prevent a conflict between spring holidays and the early voting window preceding the presidential primary election day. That originally meant just a one week shift to the second Tuesday in April.

However, the fourth Tuesday in April was a lure to Democrats in control of the state legislature. Neighbors Pennsylvania and Delaware are also scheduled to hold primaries on April 26. The Connecticut and Rhode Island primaries are also slated for that date.

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