"It Is The First Time In 20 Years That A Petition Drive Has Forced A Vote On A Maryland Law"
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The Washington Post has a story on the Maryland petition drive to ban instate tuition—a Maryland taxpayer subsidy—to illegal students. Remember, these aren't the American-born children of illegals, they're illegal themselves. And the results of this petition drive are a tribute to the power of the immigration issue:

Md. voters to decide immigrant tuition law,By Aaron C. Davis, July 07, 2011

Opponents of a new law that gives undocumented immigrants in-state tuition discounts at Maryland’s public colleges have gathered enough signatures to suspend the law and force a statewide referendum, election officials said Thursday.

It is the first time in 20 years that a petition drive has forced a vote on a Maryland law

This is the story that Paul Mendez has been writing us letters about.
Reader Mendez has been working on a Tea Party-driven petition against the State of Maryland's unilateral attempt to legislate a DREAM Act-style amnesty , extending in-state tuition to illegal aliens.
I collected 60 signatures in 5 hours at a shopping center in liberal Montgomery County this weekend. The anger/astonishment/bewilderment of people when they learned of the bill was strong. Black or white, young or old, the majority of people who stopped to talk (most rush on) were against in-state tuition for illegals.
He also reported that
"In the final weeks, our opponents launched a well-funded campaign of interference and intimidation against petition gatherers.

[One Maryland Defense Campaign, (Email them)]

Blatant, in-your-face corruption and Nazi tactics in Maryland occurring NOW, James Simpson, DC Independent Examiner, June 27, 2011

I personally witnessed these tactics, and was myself the subject of a false police report by someone claiming I had refused to leave their property when asked.

These efforts, however, were too little and too late. DREAM Act supporters drank too much of their own Kool Aid and sincerely couldn’t imagine taxpayers not being overjoyed at the chance to help cuddly undocumented teens with straight A’s go to college. They never anticipated the peasants might revolt."

It certainly surprised the Post's Aaron C. Davis, who in a classic demonstration of genuine media bias, plunked this paragraph in the middle of a straight news story:
But the petition’s success, combined with the House of Delegates’ decision this spring not to approve same-sex marriage, suggests that Maryland is not as socially liberal as its reputation and overwhelming Democratic political structure would suggest.

A large part of Maryland's overwhelmingly Democratic political structure comes from its 29 percent African-American population, who vote up to 95 percent Democratic. But same-sex marriage and free stuff for illegals are two "socially liberal" issues that do not energize black voters, or if they do, they sometimes energize them the other way.

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