Archive for Maryland

Stop Physician-Assisted Suicide in Maryland #prolife #StopPASMD

HB 1021 and SB 676 are bills proposed in the Maryland General Assembly this session that would legalize physician-assisted suicide, which was previously outlawed in 1999.

 Via Maryland Against Physician Assisted Suicide, here are flaws with the legislation:

  • The legislation does not require doctors to give patients a screening for depression before providing physician assisted suicide.   
  • Patients can request physician-assisted suicide if a doctor has diagnosed them with a terminal illness and six months or less to live. Such a prognosis is nearly impossible to accurately predict.  
  • No doctor, nurse, or independent witness is present when the lethal dose is taken.
  • People will pick up their lethal prescription at their local pharmacy.
  • There is no requirement to notify family members that you plan on taking a lethal medication

Physician-assisted suicide is opposed by the American Medical Association, the American College of Physicians, the American Nurses Association, the National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization, the National Council on Disability, and several other medical groups.

For more information on this legislation, read a fact sheet. You should also contact your legislators to register your opposition to this bill. I have also heard in numerous discussions on this legislation that Governor Larry Hogan has said he would veto it if it passed.

All of the inherent flaws detailed above are sound reasons to oppose this legislation from a secular standpoint. 

One of the religious groups opposing this legislation is the Maryland Catholic Conference. They have a fact sheet online also. 

I’ve noted before what F. Michael Gloth, III, an Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of Outpatient Services in the Division of Geriatrics and Gerontology at Johns Hopkins, has written on physician-assisted suicide:

Catholic teaching condemns physician-assisted suicide because it, like murder, involves taking an innocent human life…

Policy makers and the public are not always receptive to appeals to Catholic moral teaching. Fortunately, well-established principles of medicine and bioethics provide sound and abundant grounds for opposing physician-assisted suicide.

McGloth closes with this:

There is, of course, a final reason to advocate for physician-assisted suicide. It is cheaper to kill a person than to provide care. Yet a physician’s first obligation is to “Do No Harm.” Until that is replaced with “Save more money,” it will be difficult to support physician-assisted suicide.

In his 1995 encyclical Evangelium Vitae, Saint John Paul II wrote the following on the issue:

To concur with the intention of another person to commit suicide and to help in carrying it out through so-called “assisted suicide” means to cooperate in, and at times to be the actual perpetrator of, an injustice which can never be excused, even if it is requested. In a remarkably relevant passage St. Augustine writes that “it is never licit to kill another: even if he should wish it, indeed if he request it because, hanging between life and death, he begs for help in freeing the soul struggling against the bonds of the body and longing to be released; nor is it licit even when a sick person is no longer able to live.”

Even when not motivated by a selfish refusal to be burdened with the life of someone who is suffering, euthanasia must be called a false mercy, and indeed a disturbing “perversion” of mercy. True “compassion” leads to sharing another’s pain; it does not kill the person whose suffering we cannot bear. Moreover, the act of euthanasia appears all the more perverse if it is carried out by those, like relatives, who are supposed to treat a family member with patience and love, or by those, such as doctors, who by virtue of their specific profession are supposed to care for the sick person even in the most painful terminal stages.

Emotional arguments are being used by proponents of this bill to try to get it passed. If you oppose this legislation, your Senator and Delegates need to hear from you as soon as possible.

Also, be sure to follow @StopPASMaryland on Twitter and like their Facebook page.

Pro-Abortion Martin O’Malley to run on his “Catholic values” in 2016

Maryland State Senator James Rosapepe penned a love note to former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley in The Hill last month in hopes of helping O’Malley’s long-shot presidential campaign.

Rosapepe on O’Malley’s ultimately successful attempts to repeal Maryland’s death penalty:

Nothing characterizes O’Malley more for me than that brief conversation. In less than sixty seconds, he showed me the kind of leader he is: principled, progressive, strategic, and skillful.

He knew his Catholic values, had no reservation about expressing them, was focused on the long game — and lobbied with an engaged and respectful touch.

Rosapepe lays more of the groundwork for his theme:

But, as one who has watched O’Malley up close during his years as governor, I find him more interesting and unusual in the modern Democratic Party. He’s a social justice Catholic—or, as some have called him, a Pope Francis Democrat—in the tradition of Mario Cuomo and Robert Kennedy.

Rosapepe also discusses O’Malley offering to house illegal immigrant minors in Maryland last year and sums it up thusly:

That’s the Martin O’Malley I know — acting on the values he learned from his family, from his Jesuit high school teachers, and from his college years at the Catholic University. And acting with the leadership skills of an Irish Catholic Democrat he learned in seven years as mayor of Baltimore and eight years as governor of Maryland.

Rosapepe closes with the following:

O’Malley didn’t do this all by himself. But, with his Catholic social justice values and Irish political skills, he’s led Maryland’s progress for the past eight years. These are the traits he brings to the national stage.

It has always been fascinating to me, even before I became Catholic, that O’Malley touts his Catholic values when it comes to his opposition to the death penalty and ignores Catholic values regarding the murder of the innocent unborn through abortion.

O’Malley also cited his Catholic values and his concern for the welfare of immigrant minors yet his concerns for the welfare of minors in his own state are suspect. He took no action to require minors to get parental consent (or even notification) for an abortion but signed a state law that requires minors to get parental consent to use a tanning bed.

While Rosapepe makes the comparison to Cuomo, who made the case Catholics could pick and choose which doctrines to follow, a more contemporary comparison might be Archbishop Cordileone in San Francisco who recently admonished Rep. Nancy Pelosi:

Responding to statements made by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi–who would not say at her press briefing last week if a 20-week-old unborn child is a “human being”–Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco said that it is a “scientific fact that human life begins at conception” and that “no Catholic can dissent in good conscience” from Church teaching on the sanctity of life.

The subject of that discussion is a proposed ban on abortion past 20 weeks into the pregnancy. Polling shows that 84% of Americans (and 69% of people who identify themselves as “pro-choice”) support significant restrictions on abortion past the first 3 months. That legislation is such a no-brainer that it was supported by O’Malley’s Republican successor Larry Hogan prior to his election, even though he generally went out of his way to avoid mentioning pro-life issues in the primary or general election campaign.

Count on O’Malley to continue toeing the Democratic Party line on this issue despite what public opinion shows. In fact, Maryland became a destination of choice for late-term abortionists like Leroy Carhart and Steven Brigham during the O’Malley administration. The results included harm and even death to pregnant women undergoing late term abortions.

I asked back before the election if it was a mortal sin for Catholics to vote for Anthony Brown for governor. I’ll echo that question again now – is it a mortal sin for Catholics to vote for Martin O’Malley in 2016?

O’Malley received a top award from Planned Parenthood in Maryland. He pushed for more spending on destructive embryonic stem cell research. These two items in conjunction with all of the details above make it hard to believe He is running in anything but Cafeteria Catholic values in 2016.

Old Bay Filet-O-Fish at McDonald’s for Lent

Just in time for Lent, McDonald’s is serving Filet-O-Fish sandwiches starting February 16 for a limited time at limited locations.

From the Baltimore Sun:

Will you be ordering a Filet-O-Bay for lent?

McDonald’s and McCormick & Co. hope so. The two have teamed up to offer, for a limited time, a Filet-O-Fish with Old Bay tartar sauce starting Feb. 16 at more than 700 locations in Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, West Virginia and Washington, D.C.

The idea, McDonald’s says, came from Mark Furr, a franchisee from Baltimore

What goes unmentioned is the fact that if it weren’t for Catholics and Lent, the a Filet-O-Fish might not ever have been added to the McDonald’s menu. I wrote about this last year when I wrote about the fish sandwich at Chick-Fil-A for Lent.

I will try this sandwich at McDonald’s at least once since I’m going to be skipping two days of eating meat every week for Lent this year again (I’ve tried to skip meat on Fridays year round starting fairly recently.)

However, I expect to stay with the Chick-Fil-A fish sandwich or the Arby’s one when I have to get fast food fish this Lent.

Rep. Andy Harris on Pro-Life Legislation


I received the following email from Andy Harris today in response to a message I sent to him about HR 36. It’s a good reminder of he pro-life legislation he has co-sponsored while in Congress.

The letter:

February 5, 2015

Dear Mr. Quinton,

Thank you for contacting me regarding your support for H.R. 36, Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. I am happy to let you know that I am a cosponsor of this bill, and as such will fight for its passage in any way I can.

As you may know, this bill would prohibit late-term abortions past 20 weeks after conception. Recent medical research has shown that unborn children at this stage in development have pain receptors throughout the body linked to the thalamus and subcortical plate, react to painful stimuli by recoiling, and exhibit the stress response through sharp increases in stress hormones. An abortion at this point, therefore, would cause extreme pain to the child.

While the House had expected to pass H.R. 36 in mid-January 2015, there was last-minute controversy over the rape reporting requirements contained in the bill that have momentarily stalled its progress through the House. I am confident that these issues can be resolved, and I remain committed passing H.R. 36 and enacting the 20 week ban on abortions. The U.S. is one of only seven countries including North Korea and China that allow elective abortions after 20 weeks. H.R. 36 would change this unsettling fact and help restore dignity to all human beings—including the unborn.

You may also be interested to know that, since being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, I have cosponsored a number of other pro-life bills, including;

H.R. 374, the Life at Conception Act – declares that the right to life guaranteed by the Constitution is vested in each human being at the moment of conception.

H.R. 217, the Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition – ensures tax dollars are not used to fund abortion providers like Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

H.R. 358, the Protect Life Act – ensures money from the President’s health care law doesn’t fund abortions or health insurance covering abortions.

H.R. 361, the Abortion Non-Discrimination Act – ensures no health care facility could be denied funding based on their refusal to participate in abortion-related activities.

H.R. 1179, the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act – amends the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, seeking to permit a health plan to decline coverage of specific items and services that are contrary to the religious beliefs of the sponsor, issues, or other entity offering the plan or the purchaser or beneficiary without penalty.

As the 114th Congress addresses the many challenges facing our nation, I hope you will continue to share your suggestions. For the fastest and most cost-effective response, please contact me via email. To keep up with my work in Congress, visit my website at and sign up to receive updates at


Andy Harris M.D.
Member of Congress

It’s a shame that, unlike Harris and other pro-life members who never wavered, others in the Republican party lacked the spine to do what they promised – especially in light of polling that shows 84% of Americans (and 69% of people who identify themselves as “pro-choice”) support significant restrictions on abortion past the first 3 months (i.e. banning abortion with exceptions that are the norm in most legislation restricting abortion it seems.)

Think tank endorses Quinton Report proposal for Hogan admin


On November 6, 2014, I wrote that “Larry Hogan should do this on Day 1“:

When Larry Hogan becomes governor these O’Malley signs should come down and not be replaced with Hogan ones. The production and installation of these signs might be a small number relative to the overall state budget, but the symbolism is important. It would be further proof of Hogan’s commitment to efficient stewardship of the taxes paid by the hard-working people of Maryland.

I wrote it when I did to make sure that it was seen by Hogan’s transition team in time to forestall any eager bureaucrat in the State Highway Administration from ordering the signs in advance if the incoming governor wanted to make this move.

Months later and just days from Hogan’s inauguration, Thomas Firey of the Maryland Public Policy Institute wrote this on January 15:

Many broad, difficult policy decisions will lie ahead of Larry Hogan when he is inaugurated next week as Maryland’s 62nd governor. But one small, simple action that he could take immediately would have large symbolic value: instruct the State Highway Administration and other agencies to remove and recycle the current “Martin O’Malley, Governor” placards from Maryland’s roadway “Welcome” signs and not replace them.

The placards are of no importance to travelers; I want to know when I cross a state line, but I can’t imagine ever needing to know who the state’s governor is. The cost savings from not changing the placards would be relatively small—perhaps a few hundred dollars per sign—but it’s senseless for Maryland to spend transportation funds on such irrelevant information.

The MPPI’s tag line on their site is “New Ideas to Better the Old Line State” and I appreciate them endorsing my new idea (and I would have appreciated a link or mention as well.)

As I mentioned in November, this idea has been germinating in my mind since O’Malley first took office in 2007 and the media reports mentioned that the signs were swapped out simultaneously with his oath of office, as I recall. It fits in squarely with what Hogan ran on, in my opinion, and it would help set the tone for his administration right from the beginning. Hopefully, it’s something that happens and I hope that bringing it up in November helped start the ball rolling if it does happen. The endorsement by Firey and MPPI would help give the idea further credibility as we head to next week’s inauguration.

Sabato: Ehrlich is a 7th Tier Candidate for 2016


Larry Sabato published his ratings for 2016 Republican candidates before the latest round of Mitt Romney buzz. That latest bit of momentum for Romney wouldn’t change things at the bottom of the rankings, where we find former Maryland Governor Bob Ehrlich.

Ehrlich is at the bottom of the seventh tier, behind George Pataki and Peter King. Sabato’s description of that tier is, “Newt Gingrich Society — ‘Want to buy a book?'”

Here’s Sabato’s snarky listing for Ehrlich’s key primary advantages:

— e-mail us if you can think of one

Sabato also lists key primary disadvantages:

•Lost twice to…Martin O’Malley
•Time has passed him by: “Bob Who?”
•No grassroots support

In all, there are twenty candidates ranked higher than Ehrlich. I think Sabato is on to something re: Ehrlich with the book sales strategy. Ehrlich also may be desperately trying to cling to relevance now that he’s no longer the last Republican to win a statewide election in Maryland (especially after he predicted he would be the last Republican elected governor of Maryland.) of course, jetting away to New Hampshire and Iowa is a bit more glamorous than headlining fundraisers for Pat McDonough.

If both Ehrlich and Governor Martin O’Malley continue with plans for their 2016 bids, Maryland will have the dubious distinction of having a former governor flame out and sink to the bottom in both the Republican and Democratic primaries.

MD GOP responds to claims about Boehner, Bongino, NRCC funding

Earlier this week, I noted a Breitbart Texas story on Louie Gohmert’s challenge to John Boehner that made the claim that congressional candidate Dan Bongino was denied funding from the National Republican Congressional Committee and other national Republicans because he was expected to not support John Boehner for speaker if elected. I made it clear that it was a report from another website and that “if true” it is damning.

I was contacted by MD GOP officials (and not the NRCC or RNC) who disagreed. Joe Cluster, Executive Director of the Maryland Republican Party, gave me the following statement:

First, the RNC gave money to the State Party that was spent on his campaign and second the State Party held a joint fundraiser with him to try and help raise him money. I wish the NRCC and the RNC would have invested more in this race, but they never had this race or the Governor’s race on their radar. They did not invest in Maryland until the last minute because the numbers were not there until late in the game at which time they had little resources to offer. Dan was a great candidate and ran a great campaign – unfortunately the MDGOP did not have the resources to invest heavily – but out of the $90k we got last minute from the RNC, $40k was spent in get out the vote efforts in the 6th congressional district. FYI: Alex Mooney openly talked about not supporting the speaker when he was running but that didn’t stop the NRCC, the RNC, and the speaker from investing in his campaign. Why? Because that was a seat they had on their list to invest in. Unfortunately the 6th district in MD was thought un-winnable by the DC crowd. Criticize them for that but not this.

I have left a message for Bongino in hopes of getting his comment on this matter. Earlier in the week he tweeted this linking to the original Breitbart piece by Sarah Rumpf:

Then yesterday he retweeted a tweet by @anthropocon that linked to my story: