GOP working to kill HB 1513 – a.k.a. Rick Impallaria’s ‘temper tantrum’


If you’ve missed this story so far, Rick Impallaria and the rest of the Harford County delegation have introduced legislation that would let the delegation get a vote to remove members from the Central Committee (as well as fill vacancies.)

I’ve learned today that Republican party leaders have been contacting the sponsoring legislators and asking them to pull the bill. Additionally, numerous county GOP chairs have stated their displeasure with the bill and are working to make sure a vote on HB 1513 doesn’t take place.

I also got a report from someone in Harford County who received a robocall today on this issue from the Maryland Liberty PAC.

The reaction has been hot and heavy over the past couple of days, and Impallaria’s spin in response didn’t do him any favors. The latest criticism comes from Brian Griffiths at Red Maryland.

Words cannot describe how insane and radical such a bill is. Local Republican Parties should be run by local Republican Central Committees. Period. The idea that a member of the House of Delegates should have any role, official or ex-officio, on a Central Committee without being an elected member of it smacks of elitism and meddling in political affairs for no good reason. The shear smugness of Impallaria’s bill is matched only by its deviousness. To drop a bill as “emergency legislation” shortly after the filing deadline for the 2014 elections makes the bill seem less like a “good government” bill and more like a temper tantrum directed at the Harford County Republican Central Committee and a general condemnation of the candidates running for Central Committee than it does anything else. […]

I’ve heard from a large number of State Party Executive Committee members who are appalled at the Impallaria’s attempt to subvert the will of the voters as to who should have a say in local party affairs. Cecil County chairman Chris Zekauskus issued a very strongly worded statement against it, stating “If this bill passes, it sets a dangerous precedent across the state to use these tactics against other Central Committee members that don’t “tow the Party line” or “pass the litmus test” and “If being a member of the Maryland Republican Party means I have to kiss the ring of this politician or that politician, take me off the list.”
The biggest problem with the bill, aside from the part that they are meddling in affairs that need not be meddled with, is the fact that this open’s Pandora’s Box to the micromanagement of local party central committees from forces both inside and outside local Republican delegations. If Impallaria’s bill is successful, what is to stop him from introducing a similar bill impacting Anne Arundel County, Dorchester County, or Frederick County? What arguments would we be able to use against the Democrats if they decided to meddle in Republican Central Committee affairs by using state laws to get their desired outcome? Why open Pandora’s Box like this?

The likelihood that the Impallaria bill goes anywhere is pretty small. But this type of holier than thou nannystate elitism from a Republican regarding Republican internal affairs should be repudiated by us all.

This issue doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.

Jeff Quinton

Jeff Quinton

Jeff Quinton is an award-winning blogger who has been aggregating and blogging since 1998. He has worked as a reporter, in government, and as a communications professional in Columbia, SC and Washington, DC.

Quinton is a native South Carolinian who has lived in Baltimore since 2006. He is a recent convert to the Catholic Church and is active in the Knights of Columbus. He has been involved in the pro-life movement nationally and locally since 2010.

Quinton is a veteran who served as an intelligence analyst in the Army National Guard. He is also an Eagle Scout.
Jeff Quinton