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Dennis Whitley III v MD BOE

Dennis Whitley III v MD BOE

Page 1: Dennis Whitley III v MD BOE

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Date Created:August 10, 2012

Date Uploaded to the Library:February 20, 2014

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DENNIS WHITLEY III, al. THE 
MEMORANDUM OPINION 
This matter came before the Court August 10, 2012 for hearing Plaintiffs' Motion for Summmy Judgment, Defendants' Cross-Motion for Summaty Judgment, and Intervenor's Cross-Motion Dismiss and/or for Summary Judgment. The Court held the matter sub curia. Upon consideration the written and oral arguments the parties, the Court presents its conclusions below. 
CJ1 ,J) 
BACKGROUND October 20, 2011, the General Assembly passed and the Governor signed into law Senate Bill ("S.B. "), which established new congressional districts for the House Representatives the state Mmyland. Following the passage S.B. Intervenor MDPetitions.com began collecting signatures petition the act referendum the 2012
general election ballot, pursuant Article XVI the Matyland Constitution.In its signature collection efforts, Intervenor employed both volunteer circulators who obtained signatures person and its website http://www.mdpetitions.com, wherein those Article XVI  states: 
(a) The people reserve themselves power known The Referendum, petition have submitted the registered voters the State, approve reject the polls, any Act, part any Act the General Assembly, approved the Governor, or, passed the General Assembly over the veto the Governor. 
Plaintijft 
MARYLAND STATE BOARD ELECTIONS, al. 

Defendants 
CIRCUIT COURT 
FOR 
ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY 
CASENO.: 02-C-12-171365 
interested signing the petition could print out signature page, sign it, sign the circulator'
affidavit,and return Intervenor for collection and transmission the Secretary State for certification the petition. May 31, 2012, Intervenor submitted 28,477 signatures for the petition refer S.B. The local election boards certified 26,763 signatures valid and 1,714 invalid. Defendant Maryland State Board Elections ("MSBE") accepted those figures without conducting its own review the signatures. June 30, 2012, Intervenor submitted additional 36,267 signatures, out which the local boards certified 32,438 valid and 5,935 invalid. MSBE again accepted the local boards' determination without further review. July 20, 2012, MSBE concluded that MDPetitions.com had submitted 59,201 valid signatures and 7,649 invalid signatures, and ce1iified S.B. placed the 2012 general election ballot. July 24, 2012, Plaintiffs filed their Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief. August 2012, Plaintiffs filed their Motion for Summary Judgment. August 2012, Defendants MSBE, John McDonough, and Linda Lamone filed Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment and Declaratory Judgment Favor Defendants. Also August Intervenor filed its Cross-Motion Dismiss and/or for Summmy Judgment.3 the August hearing, the Court heard arguments the three Motions for Summmy Judgment. 
STANDARD REVIEW Title the Election Law Article governs matters related State Board determination with respect petition for referendum, including judicial review and declaratory and 
injunctive relief. See MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAw  6-101 seq. Under Section 6-209 that 
Article, two different types judicial review petition are possible. The first option allows person aggrieved the State Board's certification statewide referendum petition General Assembly enactment seek judicial review. MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  6209(a)(l)(i). that situation, "[t]he coutt may grant relief considers appropriate assure the integrity the electoral process." MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  6-209(a)(2). Under the second option, pursuant the Matyland Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act, MD. CODE ANN., CTS. JUD. PROC.  3-401 seq., any registered voter can seek declaratoty relief any petition under Title other provision law. MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  6-209(b When seeking relief under the Maryland Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act, justiciable issue prerequisite requesting declaratory relief. Anne Arundel County Ebersberger, Md. App. 360, 367-68 (1985). 
The scope judicial review administrative decision "is narrow; limited determining there substantial evidence the record whole support the agency's findings and conclusions, and determin[ing] the administrative decision premised upon erroneous conclusion law." Aviation Admin. Noland, 386 Md. 556, 571 (2005). reviewing court could reasonably have reached the agency's conclusion, should not overturn that decision unless reversal predicated solely error law. State Election Ed. Billhimer, 314 Md. 46, (1988). the instant case, the issues presented the Court are statutory interpretation, and therefore questions law. See Montgome1y County Volunteer Fire-Rescue Ass Montgome1y County Bd. Elections, 418 Md. 463, 469 (2011). Ordinarily, 
[A] court's task review not substitute its judgment for the expertise those persons who constitute the administrative agency. Even with regard 
some legal issues, degree deference should often accorded the position the administrative agency. Thus, administrative agency's interpretation and application the statute which the agency administers should ordinarily given considerable weight reviewing courts. 
Aviation Admin. Noland, 386 Md. 556, 571-72 (2005) (internal quotation marks and citations 
omitted, emphasis original). However, when statute clear and unambiguous, the Court 
does not defer the Board's interpretation. Fire-Rescue, 418 Md. 469. "When statuto1y 
provision entirely clear, with ambiguity whatsoever, administrative constrnctions, matter 
how well entrenched, are not given weight." Id. (quoting Aviation Admin. Noland, 386 Md. 
572). 
Under Maryland Rule 2-501(a), "[a]ny paiiy may make motion for summmy judgment all part action the ground that there genuine dispute any material fact and that the pa1iy entitled judgment matter law." the trier fact can arrive more than one conclusion based genuine issue material fact, any deduced inferences, summary judgment not appropriate. Sadler Dimensions Healthcare Co1p., 378 Md. 509,
533 (2003). the instant case, there are disputed material facts,so the Court's determination based whether Plaintiffs are entitled judgment matter law. Md. Rule 2-50l(a). 
PRELIMINARY ISSUES its Cross-Motion for Summmy Judgment, Intervenor challenges the standing Plaintiffs Dennis Whitley III, Anne Neal, Karren Pope-Onukwe, Joanna Hanes-Lahr, Matthew Thomas ("Registered Voter Plaintiffs"), and Maryland Democratic State Central Committee MSBE did not concede the accuracy the number signatures challenged Plaintiffs, but stipulated its Answer that "at least 5,000" signatures fell into each category, which sufficient number prevent the certification the petition the signatures either category were invalidated. 

5bring this action for judicial review.
Intervenor contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs fail establish who they are, 
how they claim aggrieved, and whether not they are even registered voters. also 
contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have failed establish that there justiciable 
controversy. Without these necessaiy requirements, Inte1venor contends that Plaintiffs lack 
standing under Sections 6-209(a) and 6-209(b) the Election Law Article, and the Court may 
not test the referability the S.B. Plaintiffs contend, and MSBE stipulates, that the 
Registered Voter Plaintiffs meet the standing requirements, and the Court properly has jurisdiction over this matter. 
Section 
Intervenor contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs failed demonstrate that they are aggrieved within the meaning section 6-209(a). Intervenor contends that they have failed prove that they were aggrieved determination made under Sections 6-202, 6-206 6208(a)(2). See MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-209(a)(l). However, the alleged aggrievement resulted from MSBE's decision cetiify the referendum petition under section 6-208(b)(l) the subtitle. order that, the chief election official needed detetTI1ine that the petition "satisfied all requirements established law relating that petition," which specific requirement the chief election official section 6-208(a)(2). See MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 
 6-208. the decision the chief election official Section 6-208(b)(l) necessarily hinges Section 6-208(a)(2) determination, Registered Voter Plaintiffs are aggrieved Intervenor raised these issues for the first time its memorandum filed August 2012, only two days before oral argument, having failed previously disclose them the Court Plaintiffs' counsel, who had already filed their Motion for Summary Judgment and did not address these issues. Notwithstanding the challenge presented Intervenor's somewhat untimely raising the standing issues, the parties were afforded opportunity address them oral argument and the Court therefore finds that appropriate consider Intervenor's claims this point. 
"determination made under Section 6-208(a)(2)" required Section 6-209(a)( and have standing pursue this action under Section 6-209(a). such, the Court need not discuss further the standing Plaintiff Maryland State Democratic Central Committee and can consider the referability issue its merits. See, e.g, Marcus Mo11tgome1y County Council, 235 Md. 535 (1964) (stating that any litigant aggrieved, the comt will consider the merits even other litigants are not aggrieved). stated, supra, Section 6-209(b) the Election Law Article allows any registered 
voter, pursuant the Matyland Uniform Declaratoty Judgment Act, the right seek declaratoty 
relief petition. When seeking relief under the Matyland Uniform Declarat01y Judgment 
Act, MD. CODE ANN., CTS. JUD. PROC.  3-401 seq., justiciable issue prerequisite 
requesting declaratory relief. Anne Arundel County Ebersberger, Md. App. 360, 367-68 
(1985). 
The issue whether the Registered Voter Plaintiffs are, fact, registered voters not serious dispute, despite Intervenor's claims. Voter registration matter public record and MSBE acknowledged its Answer and stipulated the record that checked the database and that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs are exactly that, registered voters. Having resolved this issue, clear that any registered voter may seek declarat01y judgment "any petition." 
Next, Intervenor alleges that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have failed meet the justiciable issue requirements Section 3-409 the Mmyland Uniform Declaratoty Judgment Act. Under Section 3-409, Court may grant declarat01y judgment resolves the underlying issue that gave rise the proceeding and if: actual controversy exists between contending parties; 

(2) 
Antagonistic claims are present between the parties involved which indicate imminent and inevitable litigation; 

(3) party asse1is legal relation, status, right, privilege and this challenged denied adversary party, who also has asserts concrete interest it. MD. CODE ANN., CTS. JUD. PROC.  3-409. Intervenor contends that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have failed demonstrate the existence actual controversy, antagonistic claims, any legal relation, status, right privilege under the statute. suggests that voting status alone does not establish eligibility for judicial review and that some level aggrievement necessary. See Doe Mo11tgo111e1J' County Bd. Elections, 406 Md. 697, 715-16 (2008). While Intervenor correct that the Mmyland Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act guides Section 6-209(b) the Election Law Article, thus creating justiciable controversy prerequisite, Intervenor's interpretation the justiciable controversy requirement cuts against the legislative intent the statute. When determining legislative intent, the primmy source the language the statute, which "given its natural and ordinmy signification." Boulden Mayor Comm'rs, 311 Md. 411, 414 (1988). Here, the statute clearly authorizes "any registered voter" seek judicial review the form declaratory relief "as any petition." MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  6-209(b using this broad language, contrast the stated aggrievement requirement Section 6-209(a), the General Assembly expanded the class persons authorized seek declarato1y relief. The justiciable controversy for Registered Voter Plaintiffs simply that they don't agree that S.B. subject referendum, they argue that MSBE's decision certify the 
referendum petition was error. percentage registered voters required successfully petition act referendum, and the decision registered voters will outcome determinative 
should S.B. included the general election ballot, registered voters have immensely 
important status, right, privilege this process. The legislative intent clearly give them 
broad grant declarat01y judgment actions. Through their status registered voters, 
Registered Voter Plaintiffs are therefore eligible for relief under the Matyland Uniform 
Declaratory Judgments Act and thus section 6-209(b) the Election Law Atiicle. The Court 
therefore finds that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have standing seek declaratory relief 
regarding MSBE's certification the petition refer the Congressional Districting Plan the 
November 2012 general election. the other hand, Plaintiff Matyland State Democratic Central Committee not registered voter and therefore cannot have standing under Section 6-209(b Having found that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have standing pursue this action, the Court proceeds despite the fact that the Democratic Central Committee does not. See, e.g, Marcus Montgome1y County Council, 235 Md. 535 (1964). 
Conclusion 
The Court therefore finds that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs have standing seek declaratory and injunctive relief regarding the State Board's certification the petition refer the Congressional Districting Plan the November, 2012 general election. Further, this Court finds that the Registered Voter Plaintiffs are eligible seek relief under both types judicial review authorized section 6-209 for reasons stated herein.6 
DISCUSSION 
Plaintiffs challenge the certification S.B. based the certification two groups, "buckets," signatures: 	Signatures voters who attested their own signatures the circulator: 14,254 	Signatures forms that were pre-filled with the voter's name and address Intervener's computer software: ,578 Plaintiffs allege that MSBE erred matter law when certified the signatures those two "buckets." 55,736 signatures are necessmy petition act referendum, the disqualification either the two challenged "buckets" signatures would prevent S.B. from being placed the ballot. their Cross Motions for Summary Judgment, MSBE and Intervenor argue that MSBE was correct when certified the challenged signatures. The Court Appeals has consistently stated that "constitutional and statutoty provisions related referendum petitions should followed strictly." Montgome1y County Volunteer Fire-Rescue Ass'n Montgomery County Bd. Elections, 418 Md. 463, 477 (2011). These provisions are contained within Atiicle XVI the Maiyland Constitution and Title 
the Election Law Article the Matyland Code. MSBE also has regulatoty provisions governing the petition process Title 33, Subtitle the Code ofMatyland Regulations (COMAR). Circulator's Affidavit 
Plaintiffs allege that MSBE erred matter law certifying signatures where the signer attested his her own signature the circulator's affidavit. The form and content the circulator's affidavit prescribed Article XVI  the Matyland Constitution, Section 6-204 the Election Law Article the Matyland Code, and Title 33, Subtitle the Code Ma1yland Regulations (COMAR). The Constitutional provision regarding the circulator's affidavit states that: 
There shall attached each paper signatures filed with petition affidavit the person procuring those signatures that the signatures were affixed The signatures three percent the qualified voters the state, calculated the number votes the last gubernatorial election, are required successfully petition act referendum. MD. CONST. ART. XVI his presence and that, based upon the person's best knowledge and belief, every signature the paper genuine and bona fide and that the signers are registered voters the address set opposite below their names. 
Mo. CONST. ART. XVI Section 6-204 the Election Law Article substantially similar 
its requirements: 
(a) general. -Each signature page shall contain affidavit made and executed the individual whose presence all the signatures that page were affixed and who observed each those signatures being affixed. 

(b) 
Requirements. -The affidavit shall contain the statements, required regulation, designed assure the validity the signatures and the fairness the petition process. 

(c) Age circulator. circulator must least years old the time any the signatures covered the affidavit are affixed. MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-204 (emphasis added). Finally, COMAR 33.06.03.08 provides follows: .08 Circulator's Signed and Dated Affidavit. Affidavit Required. Each signature page shall include affidavit signed and dated the circulator, required by: 
(1) 
Election Law Article,  6-204(a), Annotated Code Maryland; and 

(2) 
This regulation. Scope and Tenor. The affidavit shall state that: 
(1) 
All the information given the circulator under Regulation .07 this chapter trne and correct; 

(2) 
The circulator was years old older when each signature was affixed the page; 

(3) 
The circulator personally observed each signer the page was signed; and 

(4) the best the circulator's knowledge and belief, all: 

(a) Signatures the petition are genuine, and 
(b) Signers are registered voters the State. 
COMAR 33.06.03.08. 
The Court Appeals recently considered the purpose and construction Sections 6-203 
and 6-204 the Election Law Article: 
When read together,  6-203 and  6-204 are not ambiguous. Section 6-204 requires that every signature page petition include "an affidavit made and executed the individual whose presence all the signatures that page were affixed and who observed each those signatures being affixed." The purpose the circulator's attestation "assure the validity the signatures and the fairness the petition process."  6-204(b). This statuto1y provision for the affidavit circulator who attests under penalty pe1jmy that the signer affixed his her info1mation the circulator's presence clearly addresses prevention fraud the petitioning process and plainly intended bolster the validity the signature entries. 
Montgome1y Cou11ty Volu11teer Fire-Rescue Ass'11 Montgome1y County Bd. Elections, 418 Md. 463, 478-79 (2011). 
Plaintiffs claim that the language used the constitutional, statutmy, and regulatory provisions governing the circulator's affidavit contemplates person other than the signer the petition. MSBE and Intervenor counter that the Court should defer MSBE's interpretation the statute charged with implementing and regulating. However, noted supra, when statute clear and unambiguous, the reviewing court does not defer the administrative agency's statutory interpretation. Fire-Rescue, 418 Md. 469. the Court Appeals explicitly stated just last year, "[w]hen read together,  6-203 and 6-204 are not ambiguous." 
Id. 478. Thus, the Court owes MSBE deference its interpretation Section 6-204. The Court nonetheless agrees with MSBE and MDPetitions.com that Section 6-204 does not prohibit circulator from serving the affiant for his her own signature.8 
The language Article XVI the Maryland Constitution and Title the Election 
Law Article does not contain express requirement that person other than the signer the petition serve the circulator. Section 6-203(b requires that the "signature attested affidavit appearing the page which the signature appears." MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  6-203(b)(4). undisputed that each the signatures validated using the process developed Intervenor contain affidavit. Nothing the Constitution, the statute, the promulgated regulations requires that the affidavit someone other than the person signing the petition. See MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  6-lOl(d) ('"Circulator' means individual who attests one more signatures affixed petition."). the General Assembly wanted include such requirement, could have done so, did when required that the circulator least years age. See MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  6-204(c). Plaintiffs argue that allow individual signer attest their own signature would invite fraud. MSBE counters saying that evidence claim has ever been made that such fraud exists. Further, MSBE argues that 
the legislative framework provides for criminal penalties the event that this might occur. See MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW  16-401. Even this Court were agree with Plaintiffs, who challenge the wisdom allowing the signer petition also sign the circulator's affidavit, the legislature determined that the provisions Title the Election Law Article would best serve the interests preventing fraud. The Court finds legal support for Plaintiffs' assertion that person other than the signer the petition must serve the circulator. MSBE was therefore correct its application the law and coll'ect certify these signatures. 
administrative agency's inte1pretation and application the statute administers should given considerable weight); Fire-Rescue, supra, 418 Md. 469. Accordingly, whether the statute not "entirely clear" and the Court accepts MSBE's interpretation, unambiguous and the Court interprets it, the result the same: that there prohibition the challenged conduct. 
II. Computer-Filled Identification Data 
Plaintiffs argue that signatures from Intervenor's website were pre-filled the software and therefore violate the provision Section 6-203 the Election Law A1iicle that requires signer "include" his her name and address. Section 6-203 states, relevant paii: 
(a) general. -To sign petition, individual shall ... 
(2) include the following information, printed typed, the spaces provided: 
(i) 
the signer's name was signed; 

(ii) 
the signer's address; 

(iii) the date signing; and 
(iv) other information required regulations adopted the State Board. MD. CODE ANN., ELBC. LAW  6-203. The regulations adopted the State Board permitted Section 6-203(a)(2)(iv) are found COMAR 33.06.03.06: .06 Signer Identification. General. Each signature page shall contain labeled spaces for providing, adjacent each signature, the information specified this regulation. Required Information. When signing the signature page, each signer shall: 
(1) 
Sign the individual's name appears the Statewide voter registration list the individual's surname registration and least one full given name and the initials any other names; and 

(2) 
Provide the following information, printed typed the appropriate spaces: 

(a) 
Date signing, 

(b) 
Signer's name was signed, and 

(c) Current residence address, including house number, street name, apartment number (if applicable), town, and ZIP code. Optional information. 
(1) The circulator shall ask each signer also provide the signer's date birth or, minimum, month and day ofbi1ih. 
(2) signer's failure provide this bi1ih information does not invalidate the signature. COMAR 33.06.03.06. The statute requires the signer "include" name and address information, whereas the regulation requires the signer "provide" it. The process which signer interacted with the Intervenor's website set forth great detail the affidavit Neil Parrott, Chairman Petitions.com, attached Exhibit Intervenor's Cross Motion Dismiss and/or for Summmy Judgment. For the purpose deciding these motions, the Court accepts the following relevant portion that affidavit 
accurate description the process: order use the software program, registered Maiyland voter who wished sign the petition had log MDPetitions.com's internet website, www.MDPetitions.com, click box marked "redistricting petition" and follow series prompts commands that led them through different screens .... clicking either the "Sign the petition now" button the underlined statement "sign the petition today," the second screen would appear. 
The second screen contained two distinct fields. 
The field the left hand side the screen stated, "Get Your Petition," and 
contained the following instrnctions: 

Maryland has strict rules regarding how the petition filled out. 
This site will help insure that your petition filled out properly easy 
steps. 
Step Provide information requested the petition, indicated the
right. 
Step -Select members your household who might also want sign 
the petition. 

Step -Download the petition 
Step -Print the petition 
Step -Sign and date the petition. 
The field the right hand side the screen displayed series boxes where the user could enter unique identifiers: 
Get Started -It's Easy Fill out the information form with your information. First Name Last Name Suffix (optional) Email Address Phone Number Zip Code digit) Bitth Date Month (Dropdown) Date (Dropdown) Year (Dropdown) 
Underneath "Birth Date" was box that could checked receive updates about Intervener's activities. 
Underneath the "Updates" box was button that stated "Continue," followed this acknowledgement: "By clicking "Continue" you agree the terms and conditions." 
MDPetition.com's internet-based program used the most current voter registration rolls made available the Mmyland State Board Elections identify whether user was registered Matyland voter. the user was not registered Maryland voter, had entered his her unique identifiers incorrectly, there was some other mismatch between the identifiers entered the user and the voter rolls, the following screen appeared: 
Oops, couldn't find you 
This could happen for couple reasons: 
You are not registered vote Ma1yland. this the case, you could register vote and then sign the petition after you get your voter card. 
The zip code you provided doesn't match the zip code the voter database. 
The name entered does not match the name provided the Board Elections when you signed up. example, Debra may required instead Debbie. you feel that you've reached this message error, please contact (/redistristing/petitions/sb 1/contact). the user was registered Maryland voter, had entered his her unique identifiers correctly, and these identifiers matched the voter rolls, the fourth screen appeared. 
The fourth screen identified each registered Mmyland voter the same address and instructed the user deselect the name any registered Maryland voter the address not wishing sign the petition clicking the box next the voter's name: 
Voters Household 
You're almost done NAME! 
We've selected everyone who's registered vote your address. Please 
unselect anyone who will not signing the petition: 

Box Name 
BoxName2 
BoxName3 

Beneath the name was "Continue" button. 
Affidavit Neil Parrott 3-7 
(paragraph numbers and citations omitted). After clicking "Continue," the signer was taken through several additional screens and instrncted download, print, and sign the petition. clear that following Intervenor's process described above, each signer "included" and "provided" his her information for the petition required the statute and regulation, respectively. The plain language Section 6-203 set forth herein does not expressly provide how the individual signer must "include" his her printed typed name, address, and date signing. Neither the statute nor the regulation requires that each person must physically print type this information the petition, thus the use computer does not render the signature invalid. 
While might well the case that process like the one implemented Intervenor was not contemplated the legislature when the statute was written, the Court finds legal support for the argument that Intervenor's process does not comply with the law. MSBE was therefore 
correct its application the law and correct certify these signatures.9 
attached hereto. The parties and the Court were under greatly accelerated schedule for this matter, pursuant MD. CODE ANN., ELEC. LAW 6-209(a)(3). the extent that the Court's analysis the computer-filled data issue less complete than would otherwise prefer given more typical schedule, the Court agrees with MSBE this issue and adopts the analysis laid out MSBE's Memorandum Opposition Plaintiffs' Motion. 
DENNIS WHITLEY III, al. THE
Plaintiffe CIRCUIT COURT FOR
MARYLAND STATE BOARD ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY 
ELECTIONS, al. CASE NO.: 02-C-12-171365 affidavit the circulator the signature pages petition required Article XVI  the Maryland Constitution, Section 6-204 the Maryland Code, and COMAR 33.06.03.08. The requirements under each are substantially similar, and discussed further detail infi'a. Intervenor attempted present claim for affirmative relief its Motion and oral argument regarding MSBE's invalidation 840 signatures based the format the petitions. Intervenor's claim that point not only untimely and improperly pleaded, but also regarding few signatures that rnling the issue would have bearing the outcome this case. The Court therefore did not consider this claim. Counsel for MSBE made clear that this Court need not even reach determination regarding which review process will followed since the analysis two specific issues will essentially the same. the Court were accept Plaintiffs' argument that Section 6-204 not clear this point, the statute would not clear and unambiguous, and the Court would therefore owe MSBE some deference its interpretation the statute. See Aviation Admin. Noland, supra, 386 Md. 572 (stating that when statute not "entirely clear," 
Defendants 
ORDER AND DECLARATORY JUDGMENT 
This matter came before the Court August 10, 2012 for hearing Plaintiffs' Motion for Summaty Judgment, Defendants' Cross-Motion for Summaty Judgment, and Intervenor's Cross-Motion Dismiss and/or for Summaty Judgment. The Court held the matter sub curia.
Upon consideration the written and oral arguments the parties, this 1011 day August, 2012, the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County, hereby 
ORDERED, that Plaintiffs Motion for Summaty Judgment DENIED, Defendants' Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment GRANTED, and Intervenor's Cross-Motion Dismiss and/or for Summaty Judgment GRANTED PART, pertains the sufficiency the petition refer Senate Bill Chapter the 2011 Special Session the General Assembly, and pe1tains the standing Plaintiff Matyland Democratic State Central Committee, and DENIED PART, pertains the standing Plaintiffs Dennis Whitley III, Anne Neal, Karren Pope-Onwukwe, Joanna Hanes-Lahr, and Matthew Thomas; and further, 
ORDERED AND DECLARED, that the petition submitted the Matyland State Board Elections refer Senate Bill Chapter the 2011 Special Session the General Assembly, legally sufficient refer the laws the voters under Attic XVI the Matyland Constitution; and further, 
ORDERED, that Senate Bill Chapter the 2011 Special Session the General Assembly shall placed the November 2012 General Election Ballot; and further, ORDERED, that any and all other requests for relief are DENIED.