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The Maryland Republican Party is the branch of the Republican Party located in the state of Maryland. It is historically the underdog party in state politics.

The Republican Party is currently the minority party in both houses of the Maryland General Assembly. In the House of Delegates, the Republicans control a mere 36 seats to the Democrats' 104 plus one unaffiliated Independent that caucuses with the Democrats. In the Maryland State Senate, the Republicans control 14 seats to the Democrats' 33. Because of this nearly two-to-one government majority, predominantly Republican areas of Maryland, such as the Eastern Shore, become worried that their representatives' voices are not being heard.

The Republican Party enjoys widespread support from Western Maryland and the Eastern Shore, both of which are mainly rural. In other areas of the state such as heavily populated Montgomery County, Prince George's County, and the City of Baltimore, Republicans are a small minority.

In comparison to the national Republican Party, the Maryland Republican Party is tending more conservative. This is especially true concerning social issues and immigration. For example, Republican Congressman Wayne Gilchrest pro-choice on the abortion issue was defeated by pro-life state senator Andy Harris in the Republican primary in 2008.

Important current members of the Maryland Republican Party include former Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, former Lt. Governor and current RNC Chairman Michael S. Steele, Chairman of the Maryland Republican Party Jim Pelura, Congressman Roscoe Bartlett, MD State Senator Andy Harris.

Michael S. Steele earned a place in history in 2003, when he became both the First African-American elected to statewide office and the First African-American to become Lt. Governor, in the state of Maryland. Prior to serving as Lt. Governor, Michael Steele served as the Chairman of the Maryland Republican Party. In 2009, Michael S. Steele earned yet another place in history upon his election as Chair of the Republican National Committee, the first African-American to hold that position. The Maryland Election Board ruled that the Maryland GOP must return $77,500 to a campaign account of Steele for party legal expenses that he had paid.[1]

Important historical members of the Maryland Republican Party have included former Governor and Vice President Spiro T. Agnew and former Senator Charles Mathias.

Current events

The Washington Post characterized the party as "close to broke" as of January 2009, with $703.10 on hand and $57,000 in loans and bills.[1]

On July 18, 2009, the state party Executive Committee met to consider removal of James Pelura as party chair.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b c Wagner, John (July 15, 2009). "Md. GOP Considers Removing Chairman". Washington Post: p. B1.  

External links

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