Michael Erin Busch
1947- 2019

Yesterday, at 3:22 p.m., Mr. Busch succumbed to illness and passed away peacefully surrounded by his loved ones, according to a statement released by his Chief of Staff, Alexandra Hughes.  Mr. Busch had recently been diagnosed with pneumonia after a follow-up procedure following an organ transplant in 2017, and he had taken leave from the House the previous week to try to recover and was receiving treatment from a local hospital.

Throughout his expansive career, Speaker Busch f ought for expanded health care, marriage rights and equality, education system improvements and other issues as Maryland's longest-serving House speaker.  He was first elected to the speakership in 2003.

Mr. Busch was considered by many to be a progressive Democrat and he was known for his stalwart advocacy for environmental issues such as protection of the Chesapeake Bay.  As Speaker, he oversaw Maryland's approval of same-sex marriage and the repeal of the death penalty and lead efforts to improve education with the recommendations of the Kirwan commission high on his list. Additionally, legislation to raise the state's minimum wage was passed twice under his House leadership, most recently this session.

Mr. Busch was also a strong supporter of equal access to healthcare and the need for consumer protections against rising drug costs.  Early in the session, he joined Senate President Miller in expressing a need for oversight and prescription drug monitoring for access and affordability.  

In 2012, the speaker was a strong supporter in the effort to legalize same-sex marriage in the state as Maryland became a leading state in recognizing this right three years before federal law was passed in 2015.  In 2013, Mr. Busch lead a ban on assault rifles in the state after the Newton, Connecticut tragedy and in 2018, he was behind new gun control laws that banned bump stocks in the state.

We are grateful to Mr. Busch for his service and commitment to all citizens of Maryland and we hope for peace and comfort for his wife Cindy, their two daughters and other loved ones in this difficult time.
Sine Die is today at Midnight

Our Maryland Legislative Session officially ends at the stroke of midnight this evening.  Please look for our Legislative Wrap-Up Report with details of the session and outcomes of legislation COMING SOON! 
 
For a verbal wrap-up report, please join our final session Governmental Affairs call this Thursday at 8:30 a.m.  Contact Sharon Dols for more information.
The Arc Maryland Public Policy Team 
Ande Kolp, Executive Director
Bea Rodgers, Governmental Affairs Committee Chair
Laura Carr, Board President and Governmental Affairs Liaison
Grace Williams, Assistant Director of Public Policy and Advocacy
Edward Willard, Policy Analyst
Lori Scott, Liaison to the Education Advocacy Coalition
The Arc Maryland | (410) 571-9320  | info@thearcmd.org  | www.thearcmd.org