A few hours after unauthorized “robo-calls” began targeting northern Harford residents, Del. Rick Impallaria called for yet another late meeting of the county delegation in Annapolis – this time to propose installing Dels. Dan Riley and Pat McDonough as co-chairs.
When his proposal was overwhelmingly defeated, Impallaria reportedly told his fellow delegates he would “see you in court.”
During the 8:00 p.m. House session Monday, Delegate Rick Impallaria called for a meeting of the Harford County delegation, which was held later that night. The announcement may be heard on the legislature’s website. At 12:40 into session, Impallaria made a delegation announcement:
“Mr. Chairman,” Impallaria began, despite addressing the Speaker. “The gentleman from Harford” was recognized, and Impallaria responded “I call a meeting of the Harford County Delegation in the Silver Room ‘mmediately after session tonight for the purpose of electing the honorable gentleman from 34A and the honorable gentleman who sits to the left of me from district 7 as acting co-chairmans of the Harford County delegation until the ongoing dispute[s] are settled in the best interest of the citizens of Harford County and the delegation. Thank you.”
Over boos from the chamber, the Speaker said “There’s only one problem; the Silver Room no longer exists.” Over ensuing jeers, Impallaria said “Whatever we’re calling it now, at the end of the hall.” Busch replied “We call it the Old House of Delegates chamber.” Impallaria responded “The Old House of Delegates chamber, sir. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.”
All members of the delegation attended the impromptu meeting.
Delegate J.B. Jennings ran the meeting as chair. He began the meeting by calling for a vote on the minutes from the meeting of last Monday, when he was elected chair. The delegation adopted the minutes in a 5-2-1 vote, with McComas abstaining as she was not present at the meeting. Impallaria and Del. Pat McDonough voted no.
Impallaria then made a motion to install Dels. Dan Riley and McDonough as co-chairs of the delegation, and the motion was seconded by McDonough. There was a 10 minute discussion and then a vote. The motion failed 6 – 2. Impallaria & McDonough were in favor, while Delegate McComas sided with the rest of the delegation. Riley voted against his own nomination, and evidently wasn’t consulted prior to the motion being made.
Impallaria reportedly then left the meeting, saying that he would “see you in court.” It was unclear to which of the delegates the comment was directed.
On Tuesday morning, the clerks office of the House of Delegates confirmed that Delegate Jennings was the chair of the Harford delegation. However, a call to the Harford County delegation Tuesday morning asking for the chair connected the call to McComas.
At about 4:00 p.m. on Monday, an automated “robo-call” went out in northern Harford County. The call seems to have been targeted to Republican voters, but the source of the the call remains in question.
Delegate Norman responded that he had spoken with Delegate McComas, and that she maintained that she had no knowledge of the call.
Here is McComas’ statement released to The Dagger this afternoon:
I, Delegate Susan McComas, heard from two Harford County residents this afternoon about a taped message they had received from an unidentified woman attacking Delegate Wayne Norman. I know nothing about these calls. I have not condoned them. They are despicable. Whoever is conducting this smear campaign should stop immediately.
Dagger readers who receive the call are asked to press *57 to trace the call to identify the source.
The Dagger also obtained a transcript of the robo call that was made to republicans in northern Harford County at 4:00 p.m. Monday, which is reported to be an exact copy.
The families of Harford County want an elected school board to provide our children with a better tomorrow in education. Del Susan McComas, the chair of the Harford county delegation, has helped lead the fight for an elected school board. Now, Wayne Norman, a state delegate who has been appointed, not elected, is attacking Susan McComas. Wayne Norman, a republican is hurting Harford county and our efforts for an elected school board. Wayne Norman needs to receive a message: “Stop hurting the Republican party, an elected school Board and stop attacking Susan McComas”. Contact Wayne Norman at 410 – 841 – 3284 — and tell him to: “Stop” — stop hurting the Republican Party of Harford County!
Del. McComas has denied any knowledge of the call. The call, which contains no byline, is a violation of Maryland law. An investigation is expected.