Del. Jon S. Cardin, the front-runner to become Maryland's next attorney general, this morning issued a statement addressing yesterday's report in The Baltimore Sun that he missed nearly 75 percent of his committee votes during this year's General Assembly session.
Cardin initially declined to be interviewed about the issue and his campaign wouldn't say why he missed so many votes in committee — where members make critical decisions about whether a bill is killed or goes forward — instead pointing to his record on the House floor. Supporters, though, said he missed votes to spend time with his family.
In today's statement, Cardin expanded on those points, saying he is proud of his record and stressing his dedication to his family. The full statement is below.
JON CARDIN STATEMENT ON MISSED COMMITTEE VOTES
Baltimore, MD – “Let’s get the facts straight. Over the course of my twelve years in public service, I have a nearly 100% attendance record in both committee and on the house floor. I have been there to vote in committee, to debate each bill and pass important legislation and to protect Maryland families. I have always done my job and this past legislative session was no different.
“I am proud to have just completed the most successful legislative session of my career. Together, we passed Breanna’s Law, ‘good Samaritan’ drug policy reform, anti-patent troll legislation and we criminalized the form of online sexual harassment better known as ‘revenge porn.’ These were major victories for Maryland families.
“And while I spent my days serving all of Maryland families in Annapolis, I also have a responsibility to my own family – and there were nights where I needed to be home with my expecting wife and our young daughter. I don’t regret making that choice.
“That being said, through communications with my Chair, I made sure there was not a single instance where I missed a vote that would have affected the outcome of a bill. I am proud of my work as Chair of the Election Law Subcommittee to block voter ID schemes that would have made it more difficult for minorities to vote. I am also proud of the work we did through the entire Ways and Means Committee to pass meaningful tax reform and education policy.
“As my opponents find themselves down in the polls and anxious for attention, I fully expect these political attacks to continue. But they’ll find that many Maryland families are just like mine – with busy parents working to balance their professional responsibilities and family responsibilities, wishing there were more hours in the day.
“I’ve dedicated my career to protecting Maryland families, and as Attorney General, I will work tirelessly to stay two steps ahead of anyone seeking to do them harm. This campaign will be about those ideas to make sure Maryland families are protected and treated fairly.”