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Ralph Jaffe answers questions ahead of Maryland Gubernatorial Race


Ralph Jaffe answers questions ahead of Maryland Gubernatorial Race
Press Secretary talks North Korea relations during press briefing
Montgomery County holds its 4th Annual GreenFest
Produce from Local Farmers on Display at Central Farmers Market

Montgomery County in Pictures

Local News

Raskin, Hoyer, warn of potential future …

23-05-2018 Hits:177 Local Nickolai Sukharev - avatar Nickolai Sukharev

ROCKVILLE — As the 2018 primary election approaches, foreign election interference could be at play, Congressman Jamie Raskin warned. “It’s been nearly two years since Russia’s sweeping and unprecedented assault on the country’s elections in 2016,” Raskin said to an audience of about 70 people at Richard Montgomery High School on Tuesday evening. “Although there’s no evidence that vote counts were altered … actors were able to gain access to and could have deleted voter registration records or altered poll books.” Raskin (MD-8), who was joined by Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (MD-5), Election Assistance Commission Chairman Tom Hicks, Center for American Progress Voting Rights Manager Danielle Root, and Brennan Center for Justice’s Democracy Program Liz Howard, warned that, much as in 2016, the 2018 midterm elections could be targeted by foreign adversaries such as Russia. Hoyer explained that the issues have previously plagued elections in the United States, including in 2000, when butterfly ballots resulted in the "hanging chads," causing confusion about votes cast in Florida. He added that election machine manufacturers need to be held to “high standard of security.” “I think we’re moving in a very positive direction resulting from a negative event,” Hoyer added.

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Trump cites Montgomery cases on MS-13 vi…

21-05-2018 Hits:276 Local Neal Earley - avatar Neal Earley

Days after President Trump used the word “animals” to describe people “coming into the country” in response to a question about gangs, he has refused to apologize and has cited cases in Montgomery County as evidence that some gang members are “animals.” On Monday, the White House Press Secretary’s Office released a statement detailing violent attacks by members of the international gang Mara Salvatrucha-13, more commonly known as MS-13. The statement specifically mentioned two cases involving alleged members of MS-13 in Montgomery County, doubling down on the “animal” comment the president made which drew widespread criticism as many people interpreted the comment as an attack against all undocumented immigrants, not only members of MS-13.

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Lightning strikes cause two fires in Tak…

18-05-2018 Hits:235 Local Nickolai Sukharev - avatar Nickolai Sukharev

Crews attending in the aftermath of a fire at the 7200 block of Holly Avenue PHOTO BY NICKOLAI SUKHAREVTAKOMA PARK — More than 100 firefighters responded to calls in the city Monday evening when lightning strikes set two separate homes ablaze during a storm that included numerous thunderstorm warnings. At approximately 7:50 p.m., Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service arrived at the 7200 block of Holly Avenue in response to a roof fire before responding to a second fire less than an hour later at the 900 block of Larch Avenue, Piringer tweeted.

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State News

Hogan sets up scholarship fund to offset…

18-05-2018 Hits:346 State Neal Earley - avatar Neal Earley

A recently-passed Maryland law will make attending community college more affordable for state residents. Last week, Gov. Larry Hogan (R) signed a bill that will help cover the cost of tuition for some state residents attending community colleges. The bill allocates $15 million in state funding to provide scholarships up to $5,000 for students whose family earn less than $150,000 a year or for adults with an income of $100,000 a year or less.

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Gubernatorial candidates speak in Freder…

12-05-2018 Hits:882 State Peter Rouleau - avatar Peter Rouleau

FREDERICK — Six candidates seeking to replace Governor Larry Hogan this fall came to make their cases at a candidate forum Friday night at the Hilton Garden Inn in Frederick. The forum was hosted by the Maryland chapters of the Federation of National Active and Retired Federal Employees and the Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW).  Present were Democratic candidates Jim Shea, a former attorney and chairman of the University of Maryland’s Board of Regents; Krish Vignarajah, former policy director for First Lady Michele Obama; and James Jones II,. Former NAACP director Ben Jealous was represented by his running mate, Susan Turnbull, and Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III was represented by his running mate, Elizabeth Embry. Libertarian Party Candidate Shawn Quinn, a retired Navy veteran and Newport News, Va., law enforcement officer, also attended. Declared candidates who were invited but did not attend included Hogan, Green Party candidate Ian Schlakman, and Democrats Rich Madeleno, Ralph Jaffe, Kevin Kamenetz, and Alec Ross.

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Mr. Hogan goes to Washington

27-04-2018 Hits:1193 State Neal Earley - avatar Neal Earley

Governor Larry Hogan stands next to Sen. Ben Cardin on his visit to D.C. earlier this week. PHOTO BY NEAL EARLEY  WASHINGTON -- When Gov. Larry Hogan (R) walked out of his meeting with Maryland’s Congressional Delegation last week it seemed it could not have gone better -- at least that's what he said. Speaking at a brief press conference, Hogan and the delegation gave the impression after the meeting that their party affiliation did not matter. Like political allies, each Maryland politician repeated and reiterated their shared priorities and objectives -- to save the state from a slew of federal cuts to the management of the Chesapeake Bay, healthcare, and transportation. “I think it was a very productive meeting on really important shared priorities that are important to the people of Maryland,” Hogan said.

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Columns

A threat to the federal government is a …

23-05-2018 Hits:117 Paul's View Paul K. Schwartz - avatar Paul K. Schwartz

I recently had the opportunity to listen to Steve Lenkart address a room full of federal service retirees and his message to them should be of the greatest concern for us all.Steve has spent the last thirty years in and around the federal government with a specific focus on workforce policy. Among his many roles (not rolls, Mr. President), Steve served as the Executive Director of the Merit Systems Protection Board, to name just one. Steve is also running for president of NARFE.NARFE stands for National Active and Retired Federal Employees and is an organization that has been at the forefront in the fight to protect the earned benefits of federal employees both active and retired since its inception way back in 1921.Steve’s presentation was extremely informative and disturbing as well, as it shed light on the threat faced by federal employees from the current administration and Congress.What should also be noted is that any threat to federal government employees impacts the effectiveness and efficiency of the running of our government and that impacts every American.

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Nobody’s fault but mine or ours

17-05-2018 Hits:370 Editor's Notebook Brian J. Karem - avatar Brian J. Karem

The only thing worse than a Republican is a Democrat. One is venal and vile. The other is clueless.I was discussing the problems of politics with a candidate’s surrogate the other day and it dawned on me there are people who still do not understand why Donald Trump got elected to the highest office in the United States.Many want to merely dismiss his supporters as being stupid. Some want to dismiss their neighbors as being racists or misogynists for supporting him while still others who love Trump are labeled as traitors.The Trump supporters on the other hand have labeled those who oppose Trump traitors, racists, misogynists and stupid – but in fairness so has the president. While both sides of the aisle retreat to their side of the sandbox and act like toddlers with loaded diapers, some of us are still scratching our heads and wonder how this all came to pass.

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All the news that is unfit to print

15-05-2018 Hits:227 Paul's View Paul K. Schwartz - avatar Paul K. Schwartz

News. Fake news. Spin. Propaganda. Left-leaning. Right-leaning. The legitimate press. The dishonest media.So much to consider when simply trying to find out what is happening in the world. So, let me begin to help distinguish one from the other as we wade through the many possibilities.Let's start with propaganda or, as it is more commonly referred to, FOX News. Why does FOX News fall into the category of propaganda you ask? Because the very definition of propaganda is “information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.”That is exactly what FOX News does and is. It doesn't use facts to support its mission, which is to support the Trump presidency. It makes up its own facts or, as Kellyanne Conway put it, “alternative facts.” Labeling Special Counsel Robert Mueller as “corrupt” without providing any specifics of what he has done that has not been by the book and completely within the limits of the law is just one example.

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Sports

Blair falls to Howard in softball region…

22-05-2018 Hits:132 Sports Carlos Alfaro - avatar Carlos Alfaro

Despite the Blair Blazers' 8-2 victory against the Urbana Hawks earlier the same day (with pitcher Courtney Wyche seen here on the mound), the Blazers would fall in a second game against the Howard Lions for the regional championship. PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITH  SILVER SPRING — No one could say that the Blair Blazers varsity softball team didn’t give it their all Monday night, but after a thrilling victory against the Urbana Hawks earlier that day, the Blazers lost to the Howard Lions in the regional championship, 2-0. A team that came in with only two losses to their name, playing at home (the game counted as away for Blair but took place on Blair’s home field) after a resounding 8-2 win over the Urbana Hawks the same day, could not get over errors in the first inning that led to the only two runs the Howard Lions scored the entire game. Part of it could definitely be chalked up to exhaustion: the Blazers came out of a brief hiatus due to a streak of rained-out games to play a doubleheader in humid weather. The game against the Hawks gave them the brunt of the heat. Meanwhile, the Lions came into the game...

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Whitman girls LAX team loses to Dulaney …

21-05-2018 Hits:296 Sports Eva Paspalis - avatar Eva Paspalis

Whitman's Gaby Svec (3) squares off against Dulaney's Ellie Dreschler (15) to attempt to get a goal past Dulaney goalie Jules Dotterweich. The Whitman Vikings would come up short against the Dulaney Lions (24), losing the semifinals game 12-6. PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITH  GAITHERSBURG — The Whitman Vikings varsity girls lacrosse team fell short against the Dulaney Lions in the 4A state semifinals Saturday, losing by a score of 12-6 at John H. Harvill Stadum at Gaithersburg High School. The loss was an unceremonious ending to a dominant season that featured the Vikings steamrolling most of their opponents. Whitman entered the game with just one loss against Sherwood in a double-overtime thriller earlier this month. At first, it appeared as though the match would be a close one since the Lions had an answer every time the Vikings scored. Senior Maddy Kostopulos and junior Hanna Freund both registered a team-high two goals. Kostopulos was the first player to put Whitman on the board when she fired in her first goal unassisted just two minutes in. Dulaney junior Zoe Hermann gave the Lions their first lead midway through the first half and Dulaney never looked back. The Vikings attackers drove toward the net again...

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Undefeated Churchill boys LAX team wallo…

21-05-2018 Hits:250 Sports Eva Paspalis - avatar Eva Paspalis

Churchill Bulldogs' Reed Moshyedi (3) leaps over an opponent while keeping his focus on the goal in the game against the Howard Lions. PHOTO BY GEORGE P. SMITH  GAITHERSBURG — “We’ve got one more.” That was the phrase that was repeated over and over in the Churchill Bulldogs varsity boys lacrosse team’s post-game huddle Saturday after the undefeated Bulldogs walloped the Howard Lions (16-2) at John H. Harvill Stadum at Gaithersburg High School in the 4A state semifinals, 14-4. “We’ve got one more.” One more game. One more shot at avenging last year’s loss and beating Severna Park. One more chance to go down in history as the first Montgomery County team to win a lacrosse state championship.

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Features

Silhouettes are an outline of an ancient…

18-05-2018 Hits:198 Entertainment Barbara Trainin Blank - avatar Barbara Trainin Blank

Partially three-dimensional maypole dance by a contemporary artist is a part of an exhibit on silhouettes currently featured at the National Portrait Gallery. COURTESY PHOTO  Silhouettes have been around since ancient times – think of those shadowy figures on Grecian urns. But it was in the 19th century that the art form of cut-paper profiles took on new life. “They were a hugely popular and democratizing form of portraiture, offering virtually instantaneous likenesses of everyone,” said Asma Naeem, curator of an exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery devoted to silhouettes. “Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now” reveals the complexities of an art form that was once ubiquitous but is little known today, Naeem added. The exhibit explores the historical roots of silhouettes and contemporary iterations.

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Bethesda-based art gallery celebrates 25…

08-05-2018 Hits:741 Entertainment Barbara Trainin Blank - avatar Barbara Trainin Blank

Carol Leadbetter (left) and Grace Peterson, chair Waverly Street Gallery’s silver anniversary celebration. COURTESY PHOTO  Though she was always interested in taking pictures, Carol Leadbetter became a professional photographer later in life. That was after a formal course in photography motivated her to earn an associates’ degree at Montgomery College, specializing in portrait photography. Now she does a great deal of what’s called “photographic transfer,” or alternative printing. “With transfer, each piece is done individually and looks different,” Leadbetter said. “It’s not making 100 copies of the same thing.” Grace Peterson always loved art; first she became a self-taught oil painter and later worked in stained glass until arthritis kicked in. She then returned to oils, also obtaining a degree from Montgomery College. Peterson exhibited and entered competitions, but felt the lack of an artist’s “home base.” After Strathmore sent her a list of area art galleries, she found Creative Partners, a precursor of the Waverly Street Gallery. Leadbetter also found her home base at the Gallery.

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Diverse performances featured in Marylan…

04-05-2018 Hits:1567 Entertainment Barbara Trainin Blank - avatar Barbara Trainin Blank

Corps de Ballet achieves perfect synchronization in Maryland Youth Ballet’s “La Bayadere.” COURTESY PHOTO  Dancing a lead role in a classical ballet is something Elena Remez dreamed of ever since she was a girl. It’s also something she “worked up to” during her 12 years of study at Maryland Youth Ballet. Now Remez is living the dream: she’s dancing the title role in “La Bayadere” (which translated from French means “The Temple Dancer”), one of the three pieces comprising the Spring Concert of the school. It’s only a portion of the long ballet – set in India, with music by Ludwig Minkus, and the 1877 original choreography by Marius Petipa – entitled “Kingdom of the Shades.” “It’s an honor to dance the lead in ‘Bayadere,’” said Remez, a senior at Woodrow Wilson High School. The ballet is also challenging. “The two leads come on and off constantly ... There’s not much of a break,” she said. “Usually as soon as I stop breathing heavily after one part, I have to go right back to another.”

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