Annapolis, MD – This weekend, Larry Hogan was supposed to be “taking a look” at a new bipartisan multi-state coalition to combat gun violence at the National Governors Association’s annual conference. Instead, he was throwing parties and breaking bread with Donald Trump.
Yesterday, hours after the conference ended, the coalition announced that Massachusetts, Delaware and Puerto Rico have joined New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Connecticut. Why wasn’t Maryland on that list?
“Larry Hogan is so afraid of losing his precious A-minus NRA rating that he is apparently willing to risk the lives of Marylanders to preserve it,” said Maryland Democratic Party Chair Kathleen Matthews. “While our entire nation grieves yet another tragic mass shooting, students and governors nationwide are taking action to prevent further violence while Governor Hogan stands on the sidelines with his Republican allies in Congress.”
Hogan, who has an A-minus rating from the National Rifle Association (NRA) and accepted thousands in campaign funding from the group, has a history of obstructing Democrats’ efforts to keep guns out of Maryland communities. In 2016, he opposed legislation to ban guns on college campuses.
In this 2018 legislative session, Hogan has refused to endorse several gun violence prevention bills introduced by Democrats, including legislation to keep guns out of the hands of individuals denied a permit by the State Police and prohibit convicted domestic abusers from owning weapons.
In response to inaction from Hogan and his Republican allies, last week, hundreds of students from Montgomery County staged a walk out and marched to the U.S. Capitol to demand action on gun violence. Semret Haile, a senior at Richard Montgomery High School issued a warning to Hogan and all Republicans refusing to act to prevent gun violence: “If they don’t want to listen to us right now, that’s okay, because we’re going to vote them out in 2018 and 2020.”
In Maryland, a potentially-catastrophic mass school shooting was recently averted when a Montgomery County police officer arrested a high school student who was in possession of a loaded gun on campus—less than 24 hours after the tragedy in Parkland, Florida. According to reports, police found an assault rifle, grenades and other explosives, and a bulletproof vest at the student’s home.