Blogger Judd Legum, founder of ThinkProgress, is running for office in Maryland

Judd Legum, who founded ThinkProgress, served as Hillary Clinton’s national research director during the presidential campaign, and has been a longtime friend of AMERICAblog, is running for state delegate in the Annapolis area of Maryland. Joe and I hope you won’t mind us asking if you can help Judd’s campaign with a donation. He is spectacular.

Judd Legum (MD-HD-30)

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Judd is targeting a Republican named Ron George, who is one of the most right-wing members of the Maryland House of Delegates. George is a co-sponsor of “Maryland’s Marriage Protection Act,” a state constitutional amendment that’s widely viewed as Maryland’s version of Proposition 8. The bill would not only write discrimination against gays and lesbians into the Maryland constitution, it would “affect the ability of the State and local governments to extend benefits to partners of the same sex,” such as hospital visitation.

Goal ThermometerGeorge is also the co-sponsor of a constitution amendment that “would define anything from a fertilized egg through a full-term fetus as a person… a strategy for effectively outlawing abortion” no matter what the circumstance.

If Judd is elected we can replace this far-right nut with a new generation of progressive leadership. Judd wants to take the values he learned as a progressive blogger — accountability, transparency, inclusiveness — and bring them to the state house.

But he’s going to need your help. Judd’s opponent is not only a prolific fundraiser, but is independently wealthy, dumping $50,000 of his own money into his last election. If you can, please help Judd out and donate a few bucks via his ActBlue page. Joe and I have known him for years. He’s the real deal. Below is some info Judd sent on his bio and views.

And if anyone wants to volunteer or otherwise help with the campaign, you can contact Judd directly here: [email protected]

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Who is Judd Legum?

– Annapolis native. Born and raised in the district.

– Lawyer. Cum laude graduate of Georgetown University Law Center. Currently in private practice in Annapolis.

– Policy wonk. Three years at the nation’s premiere progressive think tank, the Center for American Progress, as research director.

– Political expert. National research director for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Helped prepare Sen. Clinton for 20+ debates.

– Blogger. Created one of the most highly trafficked progressive political blogs, ThinkProgress. Currently blogs on Maryland policy and politics here.

What is Judd running for?

State delegate in Maryland’s 30th district. The election is in 2010. Map here.

There are three delegates for District 30: Speaker Mike Busch (D), Virginia Claggett (D) and Ron George (R). George is in his first term and won in 2006 by just a few dozen votes. He is one of the most conservative delegates in the General Assembly.

You can view the previous results (2006) here.

What’s Judd’s agenda?

– Clean Government. He’s not accepting money from Maryland lobbyists or corporate PACs. He will crack down on lavish parties for legislators financed by special interests. In a recent 90 day session, lobbyists spent $1 million wining and dining members of the General Assembly.

– Clean Bay. The 25-year, multi-billion dollar effort to restore the Bay has been a failure. If we don’t act quickly, the Bay will soon pass the point of no return. This means standing up to powerful special interests such as agribusiness, which remains the number one source of pollution in the Bay. This is more than an environmental issue, it’s an economic issue. Much of Maryland’s economy is dependent upon the health of the Bay.

– Clean Energy. Maryland faces an energy crisis. Absent policy changes the state will face rolling blackouts starting in 2011. Marylanders have also seen their energy bills skyrocket. We need to move aggressively on three fronts: 1) energy efficiency programs, which can reduce the need for new generation and reduce costs for consumers, 2) investment in transmission which will allow more power to flow into the state at reduced costs. 3) new sources of clean energy including wind, solar and biofuels.

Who is Judd’s Republican Opponent? (Ron George)

George sponsored Maryland’s version of Proposition 8. George is a co-sponsor of “Maryland’s Marriage Protection Act,” a state constitutional amendment that’s widely viewed as Maryland’s version of Proposition 8. The bill would not only write discrimination against gays and lesbians into the Maryland constitution, it would “affect the ability of the State and local governments to extend benefits to partners of the same sex,” such as hospital visitation rights.

George sponsored constitutional amendment to ban abortion no matter what the circumstances. George is the co-sponsor of a constitution amendment that “would define anything from a fertilized egg through a full-term fetus as a person… a strategy for effectively outlawing abortion” no matter what the circumstance.

Campaigned on a pledge to clean environment, received 33% score from state’s top enviro group. Ron George received a score of 33% from the Maryland League of Conservation Voters. Other Republicans from Anne Arundel County scored as high as 80%. Watch his campaign ad which features a pledge to provide the next generation a “truly clean environment” here.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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