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December 7, 2011

Not everyone in old Ehrlich gang is distraught over Schurick verdict

For some who used to work for former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., the conviction of onetime campaign manager and gubernatorial aide Paul Schurick on election fraud charges Tuesday is a travesty of justice.

But the feeling isn't unanimous.

Joe Steffen, Ehrlich's longtime political enforcer who became known as the "Prince of Darkness," published a response on his blog entitled "Justice Comes A' (Robo) Calling" that takes a harsh view of Schurick's use of election night calls to influence African-Americans on whether to vote.

Steffen, who was run out of the Ehrlich administration after he was linked with an attempt to spread rumors about then-Mayor Martin O'Malley, has since become openly disenchanted with Ehrlich and many of the former governor's closest aides. The former "Prince" has become a prolific blogger on political topics, and his former boss is a favorite target.

In his post, Steffen describes the tactic the jury decided was a fraudulent attempt to suppress the black vote as the "infamous, racist Schurick Doctrine," which he contended will be a millstone around the necks of Maryland Republicans for many years in their attempts to appeal to African-Americans. But he isn't much kinder to the ex-governor.

"I really hope that Schurick’s employer at the time, Bobby Ehrlich, is not allowed to forever float above this entire mess," Steffen writes. "Take it from someone who knows, someone who’s also been under the spotlight (though never convicted) for political dirty tricks done while in Mr. Ehrlich’s employ, Bobby Ehrlich – the failed author whose ego knows no bounds – will attempt to do just that."

Richard J. Cross III, a former Ehrlich speechwriter, wasn't terribly sympathetic to Schurick either on his Cross Purposes blog. He expressed the view that the parade of politically powerful character witnesses on Schurick's behalf may have backfired.

"When Schurick’s friends spoke to the jury, they portrayed him as a model of truth, forbearance, and integrity – Maryland’s own Honest Abe. When I first read that, I nearly lost a mouthful of Diet Pepsi," Cross writes. "Anyone who knows Schurick can tell you he has always been a bit of a rascal – a quality I came to both admire and dislike about him at different times."

Cross suggests that Schurick owes apologies to a raft of people for his actions, including the Republican Party, the former Ehrlich campaign aides who were dragged into the investigation and the former governor himself for tainting Ehrlich's legacy.

Posted by Michael Dresser at 2:35 PM | | Comments (1)


Where are all of the usually republican rats on here, huh????


When the real dirt comes out about republican disgusting, destruction operations come out, NOT ONE OF YOU USUAL REPUBLICAN BLOGGERS SHOWS UP... You're garbage; know you are. It's ok if this had been a "libtard" or a "socialistic communist", but all I see are republicans going to jail!!!!

Stealing or trying to steal or suppress the Constitutional right to vote, is undeniably unpatriotic and unAmerican...that is COMMUNIST. THAT is your republican party.

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About the bloggers
Annie Linskey covers state politics and government for The Baltimore Sun. Previously, as a City Hall reporter, she wrote about the corruption trial of Mayor Sheila Dixon and kept a close eye on city spending. Originally from Connecticut, Annie has also lived in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where she reported on war crimes tribunals and landmines. She lives in Canton.

John Fritze has covered politics and government at the local, state and federal levels for more than a decade and is now The Baltimore Sun’s Washington correspondent. He previously wrote about Congress for USA TODAY, where he led coverage of the health care overhaul debate and the 2010 election. A native of Albany, N.Y., he currently lives in Montgomery County.

Julie Scharper covers City Hall and Baltimore politics. A native of Baltimore County, she graduated from The Johns Hopkins University in 2001 and spent two years teaching in Honduras before joining The Baltimore Sun. She has followed the Amish community of Nickel Mines, Pa., in the year after a schoolhouse massacre, reported on courts and crime in Anne Arundel County, and chronicled the unique personalities and places of Baltimore City and its surrounding counties.
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