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Power Rankings

Baltimore City Power Rankings

Photo: Illustrations by Alex Fine, License: N/A

Illustrations by Alex Fine


1 Carl Stokes

The councilman and chair of the City Council’s taxation committee took on Il Mayore’s financial smoke-and-mirrors this week, claiming that city officials have told him the city is losing $30 to $60 million per year due to tax-collection errors. He proposed two new resolutions, one demanding a full financial audit—which BCPR and all sane Baltimoreans have been demanding for ages—and an exploration of privatizing tax collection. Il Mayore responded with more smoke-and-mirror “reforms” and continued to push back against the full financial audit the city so desperately needs. What is she hiding?

2 Martin O’Malley

The U.S. government shutdown has been an unmitigated disaster for America, with its government now operating at somewhere near half-strength, making it the laughingstock of a confused world, but it also makes the Democrats look like a virtual shoo-in in the 2016 presidential race. Our governor, who has been as subtle as a neon dildo about his national ambitions, is unlikely to win the nomination, but his steadfast loyalty to Democratic pols and policies—especially Obamacare—may earn him the veep slot. Expect a Clinton-O’Malley ticket to start trending in the minds of Dem strategists.

3 Justin Fenton

Last weekend, the Baltimore Police Department, without announcing a change, stopped tweeting every shooting in the city, obscuring what was a healthy level of transparency about violence in the city. The Sun’s Fenton noticed the tweets had stopped and got the department to confirm the change in policy, then reported and tweeted about it extensively. Within hours, a department spokesperson emailed Fenton to tell him BPD had reversed course and would resume the tweets. If only BPD would make good decisions without being prompted by an alert journalist.

4 Obamacare

It looked like an inauspicious start for Obamacare when, the state’s health exchange, opened up this week and users were plagued by technical glitches. You could almost hear Bob Ehrlich popping wood as he dreamed up his next Sun column. As it turned out, the glitches were the result of the overwhelming demand for Obamacare. Sure, it might be a pain in the ass to have to stare at a screen for a few minutes on the first day of the exchange’s operation, but BCPR imagines it would be much better than waiting in the emergency room beside a guy with an axe in his head for eight hours every time you get a cold.

5 Republicans

As the painful, embarrassing government shutdown stretched into its second week, one singular fact became clear: John Boehner could end it any time he wanted, just by letting democracy take its course and allowing the House to vote on a continuing resolution. If there’s any justice, his continuing refusal to do so, which subverts the basic principle of “majority rule,” will be the GOP’s cross to bear for many years to come.


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