RINOs Threatening to Subvert Maryland's Most Conservative County
James Simpson | American Thinker -- Three years ago, five newly elected commissioners in Carroll County, Maryland set precedent by taking a bold stand against Agenda 21 in this dark blue state. They abolished the county “Office of Sustainability” and began extricating Agenda 21 planning concepts from the county master plan.
They were also the first governmental organization to revoke membership in the U.N.’s International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) – the vehicle through which Agenda 21 is injected into local planning without our knowledge or consent. The commissioners’ leadership set an example that many local governments ultimately followed. In 2011, ICLEI boasted 600 U.S. local governments as members. Today there are 450, a decline of 25%. Nine states have now considered or enacted laws against Agenda 21. Once an obscure issue, it is now widely recognized for the Trojan Horse it is.
The board accomplished many firsts, some of which made national news. Following passage of Maryland’s unconstitutional gun laws, Commissioner Richard Rothschild proposed to make Carroll the first-ever Second Amendment sanctuary county. He reasoned that if Governor O’Malley could break both federal and state law to make Maryland an illegal alien sanctuary state, then Carroll County could take a constitutional action to protect the Second Amendment. Commissioner Robin Frazier argued early on for tax cuts and got them through. Frazier was also the commissioner who refused to stop invoking Jesus’s name in pre-session prayers, despite threats of arrest. Her story made national news and was featured on Fox’s Megyn Kelly Show. Carroll was one of many counties that benefited from the Supreme Court decision in Town of Greece v. Galloway, which affirmed the unfettered right to opening legislative meetings with prayer.
This is precisely the kind of leadership we need. But all was not as it seemed. Commissioners Rothschild and Frazier were the only voices on the five-member board who consistently favored spending restraint, cutting taxes, reducing government, supporting education choice, protecting property rights, and freedom. They were almost always the innovators. The power of their arguments often won the day despite the fact that Commissioner Haven Shoemaker and Board President Doug Howard soon revealed themselves to be RINOs. They would fight Rothschild and Frazier tooth and nail, but when public opinion went against them, as it frequently did, they took up the cause and claimed credit. The last commissioner, Dave Roush, was moderately conservative but usually took the least controversial vote.
Doug Howard, Secret Democrat?
In 2012, Howard started a group called “Carroll 2030,” a sweeping planning agenda for the county straight out of Agenda 21. It is Howard’s private group – his own idea – but frequently viewed as a county initiative, and inexplicably hosted on the government website. While their 2013 meetings are listed on the website, these were not open meetings, the public was not welcome to attend, and the participants were all handpicked by Doug Howard.
A belated statement of purpose, posted in August 2014, professes to invite the public to participate, but a December 2012 letter made clear that Howard had already accomplished the “visioning” before the “visioning” meetings even began (emphasis added):
We will begin the [January] meeting by doing some visioning exercises in order to ensure that we are capturing ideas from the leadership team Commissioner Howard named to develop a vision for Carroll 2030.
“Visioning” includes the following priorities: more public transportation, low-income “affordable” housing, “diversity,” high speed internet, public transportation, and public educational opportunities – all at little or no cost. And everyone will be paid a “fair” wage. Who could object? But who will pay for it all? ... continue reading here...