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  Md. lawmaker takes heat for marriage proposal
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ContributorThe Sunset Provision 
Last EditedThe Sunset Provision  Aug 19, 2009 09:24pm
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MediaWebsite - Yahoo News
News DateThursday, August 20, 2009 03:00:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionDemocratic Delegate Jon Cardin was intent on creating the perfect night to propose to his fiancee, and the evening is certainly one she won't forget. Unfortunately, a fuss over his use of a Baltimore police helicopter and a police boat is likely to dog the couple long after the wedding.

After he pulled off the Aug. 7 happy hour stunt in which his girlfriend thought the boat they were cruising on had been raided, only to be surprised by Cardin going down on bended knee, Cardin talked of his escapade at a conference of local government officials.

But the buzz around the engagement turned sour after it became public. Cardin has been criticized for everything from bad taste to the misuse of resources in a city hit hard by violent crime, especially near the Inner Harbor shopping and entertainment district, where recent beatings and shootings have scared tourists and residents alike. Police have begun an internal probe of the incident.

But some of the criticism seems to be muted by the nature of the event, and no complaints have been filed with the General Assembly's ethics committee.

"It was poor judgment," said Ryan O'Donnell, director of the political watchdog group Common Cause Maryland. "It was kind of done in poor taste to begin with in my opinion, but it doesn't seem like the police were coerced in anyway. It seemed like it was done in a friendly kind of way."

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