The Jaffe Defamation Lawsuit – Update

Press Release

Ralph Jaffe

Contact: 410-602-1811

September 13, 2018

Re: The Jaffe Defamation Lawsuit – Update

—A new court date for the Jaffe Defamation Lawsuit has been set.
December 6, 2018

Reason for the change of date.
Three defendants are involved in this case.
Two of the three defendants, the Baltimore Sun and WJZ filed Notices of Intention to Defend.
A miscommunication took place in serving the 3rd defendant, the Maryland Democratic Party. Therefore, a summons renewal was issued to them.

—Additional details
I plan to subpoena at least one writer or editor of the Baltimore Sun to testify as a witness at the hearing.

The case number is 0101-0018769 – 2018 in the Circuit Court of Maryland for Baltimore City.

Type of Proceeding: MERIT TRIAL
Date: December 6, 2018
Session Time: 8:30 AM
Court Location: 501 E. Fayette Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21202-4092


The Jaffe Defamation Lawsuit

Press Release

Contact: 410-602-1811

August 29, 2018

Ralph Jaffe, teacher who is leading the movement to get rid of corruption in Maryland politics and bring about true, ethical reform, has filed a defamation lawsuit against the Baltimore Sun, WJZ, and the Maryland Democratic Party.

The case number is 0101-0018769 – 2018 in the Circuit Court of Maryland for Baltimore City.

The Baltimore Sun and WJZ, have filed Notices of Intention to Defend.

The Court has scheduled a proceeding in the case.
Type of Proceeding: MERIT TRIAL
Date: November 14, 2018
Session Time: 8:30 AM
Court Location: 501 E. Fayette Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21202-4092

The summons to the Maryland Democratic Party was returned unserved. A summons renewal will be going out.

When it is all said and done concerning the Jaffe Defamation Lawsuit, I believe the real winners will be the citizens of the state of Maryland.

Below is a copy of the original lawsuit and documentation – namely, the date, writer(s), and title of articles – which support the lawsuit. Not included in this article but included in the lawsuit is the sampling of complete versions of some articles.

In developing this defamation lawsuit Ralph Jaffe had the help of 4 lawyers, one of whom I believe is the most ethical lawyer in the state of Maryland.


Copy of the lawsuit
I am filing a defamation lawsuit against the Baltimore Sun; WJZ Channel 13 TV station; and the Maryland Democratic Party for libeling my reputation as a teacher and as the leader of the movement which started in 2002 with the objective of beginning the process of getting rid of the blatant corruption in the Maryland political system and replacing it with real, true, ethical, political reform.

Detrimental actions committed by the Baltimore Sun – reporters such as Erin Cox, Michael Dresser; the editorial department such as Andrew Green who is the editorial page editor; the publisher, Triffon G. Alatzas – include the printing of misinformation about the Jaffe Movement and refusal to correct the error; deliberate omission of information about my campaign; repudiation of the legitimacy and real intent of the movement; and/or use of belittlement in any coverage it did provide. Any comments made were peppered with negative overtones. All such measures served to defame and discredit my reputation and hurt the movement’s objective. Moreover, these acts deprived Baltimore Sun readers the opportunity to become informed about the movement.

Please note the enclosure, Baltimore Sun Documentation to Support Lawsuit, which documents my claim against the Baltimore Sun writers and the editorial department. For example , the article “Jealous picks former Democratic Party chair Susan Turnbull as running mate” states that “Ben Jealous is the first of the eight Democrats seeking the nomination to announce a running mate.” However, that statement is not correct. In May 2017, I officially filed and named my lieutenant governor. Such being the case, how could Ben Jealous be the first one to announce his lieutenant governor?

Two articles make the point that “neither Jaffe or Jones have raised enough money or built a campaign infrastructure capable of a statewide campaign.” (Enclosures, “Democrats to share stage Monday in first debate of Maryland governor’s race,” May 21,2018 and “Democratic candidates for Maryland governor to debate today as campaign enters final stretch,“ June 5, 2018. However, my budget, by design, was not to exceed $495. This was the purpose of the movement – refuse to accept campaign contributions or raise millions of dollars for campaign expenditures.

With regard to WJZ the TV station’s staff such as Audra Swain, the general manager and Gail Bending, the news director continued their practice of omission of information to its viewers about the Jaffe Movement. What is more, they denied me the opportunity to participate in the TV Democratic gubernatorial debate which aired on June 5, 2018 in conjunction with the Baltimore Sun. Please see the enclosure, “Dem. Gov. Primary Debates Update: Baltimore Sun. Their decision to exclude my involvement had a ripple effect. Please note the enclosure, NEED RESPONSE: Update on NBC-4 Debate,” which conveys the fact that station NBC-4, after watching the Baltimore Sun debate, wanted to limit debate participants from all 9 campaigns to 7.

The Maryland Democratic Party, via staff such as Stephanie Potter, the executive director and Kathleen Matthews, chairman reached an agreement with the 9 Democratic candidates for governor whereby it was concluded that in any of the TV or radio debates, it would be all 9 Democratic candidates running for governor or none. If all 9 were not invited to participate, none of them would participate in the debate. Please note the enclosure, “Democratic Gubernatorial Campaigns Agree on Inclusive approach for Televised Debates.”

In the debates conducted by the Baltimore Sun and WJZ only 7 candidates were invited. The Democratic Party refused to uphold the agreement.

Numerous citizens, including my students and other interested parties, approached me with the question as to why the Baltimore Sun does not include me in their coverage of the campaign for governor. I was also asked why I did not take part in the WJZ debate.

I make reference to the enclosure of two letters to the editor printed in the Baltimore Sun. (“The press doesn’t do its job,” 10-18-17 and “Sun lacks serious coverage of candidates,” 4-17-18) These substantiate my claim that the Baltimore Sun committed a huge disservice to its readers by denying them accurate and complete information about the Jaffe Movement.

These deliberate behavior patterns by the Baltimore Sun, WJZ, and the Maryland Democratic Party discredited and caused major damage to my reputation as a teacher. Therefore, I am requesting I be paid the amount of $1 (one dollar) in monetary compensation. Of more importance to me, I am requesting an apology from these organizations for their arrogant and irresponsible actions directed toward me and the movement.

I am pleased to inform the Court that in developing this lawsuit which is now before you, I have had the assistance of four attorneys, one of whom I consider to be the most ethical attorney in the state of Maryland.

Baltimore Sun Documentation to Support Lawsuit

Information provided includes the date, writer(s), and title of articles.

May 23, 2014 Michael Dresser
Baltimore County up for grabs in governor’s race with no hometown favorite

May 28, 2014 Michael Dresser
Brown raises more than $1 million in 6 weeks

May 28, 2014 Michael Dresser
With money to spend, candidates for governor likely to launch ad blitz

June 21, 2017 Erin Cox
Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker says he’s running for Maryland governor

September 19, 2017 Erin Cox
Krishanti Vignarajah, the only woman running for Maryland governor, launches campaign

September 26, 2017 Erin Cox
Maryland Democrat with most name recognition isn’t among 7 running for governor, poll says

October 21, 2017 Erin Cox
Democrats running for governor court teachers’ endorsement with big promises

November 29, 2017 *** Erin Cox
Jealous picks former Democratic Party chair Susan Turnbull as running mate

December 8, 2017 Michael Dresser
Madaleno to accept public financing in governor’s race

February 23, 2018 Erin Cox
Candidates for Maryland governor are picking running mates. Should voters care?

April 3, 2018 Erin Cox
Democratic candidate for Maryland governor vows to avoid advertising on Sinclair stations

April 15, 2018 Erin Cox
Packed field alters tactics

April 18, 2018 Editorial
Paths to Victory

April 21, 2018 Erin Cox
Democratic candidates back legislation legalizing marijuana

April 22, 2018 Luke Broadwater
Most Democrats seeking governor’s seat will release taxes

April 24,, 2018 Michael Dresser and Pamela Wood
Hogan far ahead of all Democrats in poll

April 25, 2018 Editorial
Winning Issues

April 29, 2018 Michael Dresser
Campaign Ad Watch

May 5, 2018 Luke Broadwater
Jim Shea releases tax returns, showing he paid $4.7 M in taxes

May 11, 2018 Erin Cox
Death stuns county, upsets state politics

May 21, 2018 ***** Erin Cox
Democrats to share stage today in first debate of Md. governor’s race

May 27, 2018 Liz Bowie
Democrats for governor make pitch for education

May 27, 2018 Editorial
Red line reality

June 3, 2018 Editorial
How to help Baltimore

June 5, 2018 ***** Erin Cox
Democratic candidates for Maryland governor to debate today as campaign enters final stretch

June 5, 2018 Editorial
On the issues: education

June 6, 2018 Editorial
The Issues: Health care

June 6, 2018 Erin Cox
Democrats emphasize their differences more

June 7, 2018 Editorial
The issues: Environment

June 24, 2018 Erin Cox
Fall’s race will differ

June 25, 2018 Erin Cox
Late choices could be key

June 30, 2018 Michael Dresser
Joe Biden to lead Maryland Democrats in unity event

July 1, 2018 Erin Cox and Luke Broadwater
Jealous faces crucial task of trying to unite Democrats

July 1, 2018 Doug Donovan
Biden talks of Democratic unity

Bring On Bratton

While the series of articles in the Baltimore Sun detailing the corruption trials involving several Baltimore City police officers have been enlightening, the article, “Officer: Suiter stole money,” 2-6-18, was one that really dismayed me. Although it is obvious a small number of officers have been responsible for severely tarnishing the image of the Baltimore City Police Department, I firmly believe the overwhelming majority of the rank and file officers are heroes. Every time they put on their uniforms, they risk their lives to protect all of the citizens of Baltimore City regardless of the fact they are underpaid and under-appreciated.

The testimony coming out in the trials indicates to me that there is no one in the upper management in the Baltimore City Police Department who is capable of restoring public confidence in the integrity of the Baltimore City Police Department.

What needs to be done is to think outside the box; otherwise we will just be going around in circles. What needs to be done is to call on the Greater Baltimore Committee to persuade Mayor Pugh to agree to offer Mr. William Bratton – the most respected individual in American policing, $500,000 in the hope that he will agree to accept the position as the Police Commissioner or consultant for the Baltimore City Police Department. William Bratton has served as a highly successful police commissioner for New York City and also the city of Los Angeles . His credentials are impeccable.

As far as I am concerned, he is the only one who can clean up the mess and bring back public trust in the Baltimore City Police Department.

This action needs to be done now!

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election

Is She Kidding?

After reading “Pugh starting office to help blacks.” 2-5-18, I have to ask, is she kidding? In my book, what this new office amounts to is another PR attempt on her part to make us believe she is on the right trajectory for the city. Furthermore, it is a program that does not come without a price – a steep one at that.

Mayor Pugh, are you cognizant of the fact that I offered a TUTOR-MENTOR TEAM PROGRAM free of charge for the Baltimore City Public School System. Unfortunately, because currently you have a leaderless CEO, Dr. Sonja Brookins Santelises, who draws a salary of $299,000 (an outrageous amount) my program has not made any headway thus far. As a side issue, what does the CEO do to earn her salary. It seems to me the principals of the city schools are actually running the disastrous show.

Do you realize that in the last 5 days, there have been revelations of 2 new programs, all at the expense of the taxpayers. Rumors have it that Mayor Pugh is planning to spend $150,000 for a TV station to strengthen her connection with the citizens of Baltimore City. As for the new Office of African American Male Engagement (which overlooks younger males and excludes females all together) she does not disclose the salary of Andrey Bundley, the designated leader, nor does she make known the cost of running the office. For discussion purposes, if the price tag for these 2 programs is close to $500,000, I would think that hiring 8 police officers or making needed repairs in the deteriorating school buildings or using the money for the war on opioids might bring better results for the citizens of Baltimore City.

When are the citizens going to say – Enough – Enough is enough!

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election

No Superman on the Scene

The editors of the Baltimore Sun are acting like a bunch of Monday morning quarterbacks as evidenced in their editorial, “Getting impatient,” 1-21-18.

Over the past year and one half, I can not recall reading one word in the Baltimore Sun whereby the editors demanded that Mr. Kevin Davis be fired. But, now all of a sudden, they declare that it is about time Mayor Pugh made the move.

Furthermore, I do not remember hearing either Mr. Jack Young or City Councilman Brandon Scott calling for the firing of Mr. Davis. To my recollection, many of the articles showcased measures being put into place by city officials to get a handle on the crisis. Remember the daily morning meetings conducted by Mayor Pugh, Mr. Davis, business leaders, and others to map out strategy for the day. And were we fed a note of optimism that over time the things they were putting into place would lead to changes for the better. However, what has been the result? More crime and more suffering endured by the citizens of Baltimore City.

The truth is had Mayor Pugh chosen Superman or Wonder Woman, instead of the new Police Commissioner, Darryl De Sousa, we are still not going to witness improvement – not until we have politicians who are willing to tell the truth. Thanks to the career politicians in control of Baltimore, the Baltimore City Police Department is at least 1000 police officers short of where they need to be in order to effectively protect the citizens of Baltimore City. Commissioner De Sousa’s commitment to deploy police officers in the dangerous areas amounts to “hogwash rhetoric.” Unfortunately, we will continue to hear of shootings taking place every day and night because the Mayor and the Governor do not have the “guts” to call out the National Guard to clear the streets of the criminals who now have seized control of Baltimore City.

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election

Fake term limits versus “Real Term Limit”

Sorry to say – but the editors of the Baltimore Sun do not understand the difference between “fake term limits” and “real term limits.” (“Term limit limits, “ 1-12-18) Unfortunately, the Baltimore Sun editors have not learned what my students have learned.

Point 1 to learn – When a first time politician, male or female, Democrat or Republican is elected to office, this newly elected politician enters his/her office and looks all around. Wow! He/she sees all the perks – the fancy carpeting, striking furniture, high-tech equipment, and other such luxuries and exclaims, “This is for me.” Thus, instead of having in mind what is in the best interests of his/her constituents, he/she considers what does he/she have to do to keep this, fame, power, and money that the office will provide for him/her.

Point 2 to learn – In the Sun’s version of term limits, deemed “fake term limits,” after a politician has served for two terms, such as a Baltimore City councilman, the individual can easily start a new cycle of term limits by aspiring to become a delegate. When that two term of office has concluded, he/she then moves on to state senator. From there, the politician looks to the office of governor, and then United States Senator. He/she could even aim for president. So…. what happened to term limits? He/she follows in the footsteps of someone like Senator Ben Cardin or Senator Barbara Mikulski – a 40 year career politician. That is the so-called “fake term limits” – always running for re-election and always taking campaign contributions (legal bribes) to ensure re-election and retain power, fame, and money.

On the other hand, this is “real term limits.” the individual chooses whatever office he/she desires – serves one term and makes a commitment that he/she will not run again for any political office. What does this accomplish? #1 – The person does not have to worry about taking bribes to get re-elected. #2 – The person has the opportunity to be a committed, dedicated, real, ethical politician whose only goal is to make life better for the citizens he/she represents.

Unfortunately, the editors of the Baltimore Sun do not understand that we do not have any ethical politicians in our state or country. That’s why “what’s in it for me,” occupies the top of the list of values for most politicians and explains why our country is so messed up. The best proof of this is Donald Trump is our current president. Need I say more?

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election


Defending the Indefensible

Outrageous situations call for bold measures to be taken. The members of the Baltimore City Board of Education should resign along with members of the Baltimore City Council.

It is not enough that they have failed to properly straighten out the 10 year chaotic deterioration of the public school education system. And now we witness their failure to properly ensure the safety and welfare of students attending Baltimore City public schools as evidenced by the deplorable heating conditions endured by students in the winter and the terrible cooling system in the spring and summer.

While Governor Hogan is attributing the problems to mismanagement and Mayor Pugh is pointing to insufficient funds for the problems, the students and parents are caught in the middle – they are the innocent victims suffering from the unforgivable mistakes of Governor Hogan, Mayor Pugh, and the school officials.

The school board heard the distress of parents and teachers alike at their school board meeting on January 9th. Now they are planning for a town hall meeting to be held on January 22nd – 2 weeks away – just more delay – more time for school officials to come up with band-aid explanations that will only make a small, if any, dent in a massive crisis. For Mayor Pugh to say that Baltimore is not the only place that has suffered is an unacceptable excuse. Furthermore, the 9 million dollars that Governor Hogan is giving to the city to get the heat back on represents a step that is after the fact. The dire circumstances in the city schools should never have been allowed to reach this breaking point in the first place.

One thing is certain – The disastrous quality of the education system and the horrifying environment in which students have to learn are problems that need to be resolved now – not with a lot of rhetoric – but workable measures that will make a REAL POSITIVE difference in the lives of Baltimore City people – young and old alike. The City Council and the General Assembly along with the mayor and the governor need to act now. Stop pointing the finger at one another; just “fix the problem.” If they are not capable of doing this, then all of these career politicians need to be voted out of office.

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election

No Reason for Optimism

“City reaches 343 homicides, highest per capita rate ever,” 12-28-2017
“City prayer vigil honors lives lost to violence,” 12-29-2017
“BPD making strides,” 12-31-2017
“Backward-looking strategy – Gov. Larry Hogan’s proposed crime plan
sends Maryland back to the 80’s,” 1-1-2018
“Maryland politics 2018,” 1-1-2018
“City searches wearily for cures for violence,” 1-2-2018

Putting all of these articles together can easily cause one to come to the following conclusion.
Bad politicians (such as members of the Baltimore City Council, Mayor Catherine Pugh, Governor Larry Hogan), bad bureaucrats (such as Baltimore City Police Commissioner Kevin Davis), bad policies, bad solutions, bad media editorials equal an overload of bad news and one big, bad mess for the citizens of Baltimore City.

The only way to convert all this bad to something good is to gravitate towards Ralph Jaffe’s proposals and solutions for the crime problem in Baltimore City – specifically, calling out the National Guard for 3 weeks and the Tutor-Mentor Team Program for city public schools . This action will lead to good news for Maryland citizens.

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election


A Costly Plan Without Real Benefits

Preposterous and outlandish – that’s how I would characterize Governor Hogan’s Baltimore plan for widening the highway on the northern part of the Baltimore Beltway in order to ease congestion (“Hogan proposes $461M for roads,” 12-20-17).

According to the article, state officials stated that travel time might be cut about 15 minutes to an hour in getting home from work. To the commuters I would respond in the following way. There are thousands of Marylanders who are looking for jobs and would gladly trade places with those who are so upset about the long traffic delays.

And then there is the cost – $461 million dollars! Can you imagine how many police officers could be hired with that amount of money? Doesn’t the governor and his cohorts in the State Highway Administration realize that saving lives might be more important than saving time for commuters. In light of the raging fire of violence in Baltimore which affects the lives of so many people, couldn’t these government officials show more sensitivity for these citizens?

Wake up Baltimore – do your part to get Governor Hogan and the morally bankrupt career politicians out of office before it is too late.

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election


What About a Credit Instead of a Surcharge?

The article, “BGE seeks OK for $963M pipeline improvement program,” 12-5-17, ignites feelings of exasperation and aggravation. I am vehemently opposed to BGE’s effort to get approval from the Maryland Public Service Commission for its five -year plan to upgrade the natural gas pipeline system – a program that would place a customer surcharge of up to two dollars a month.

Isn’t it ironic that the program was launched in 2013 with legislation passed by the Maryland General Assembly and approved by the Governor – legislation that allows for the customer surcharge. At that time, apparently, the career politicians including Governor O’Malley were in cahoots with one another to rip off the customers. Now, five years later, BGE customers are once again the injured parties being ripped off by the shenanigans of the career politicians, members of the General Assembly, the Governor along with the Maryland Public Service Commission.

Past experience with the Maryland Public Service Commission, whom I believe are merely a group of “puppets” appointed by the Governors, gives me cause to think that the chances of the Commission disapproving BGE’s request are slim to zero.
If there is any justice, the Public Service Commission should demand that BGE give its customers a two dollar credit each month for their inept service. But…that will not happen either.

The only solution to this type of unfair practice is the following. In the 2018 state election vote every incumbent out of office. Until we get career politicians out of business and money out of politics, customers of BGE and citizens will continue to suffer.

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary election