Robert R. Neall
Originally a Democrat, Neall switched parties in 1972 to become a Republican. Neall was a member of the Maryland House of Delegates from 1975-1987. He was the Republican nominee for the United States Congress in the 4th District in 1986, losing to Thomas McMillen in an extremely close election by 428 votes. He was elected County Executive of Anne Arundel County, Maryland from 1990-1994.
After his term ended, Neall was appointed by the Anne Arundel County Republican Central Committee to fill a vacancy as State Senator from the 33rd District after the passing of John A. Cade. Neall was a member of the Budget and Taxation Committee. Neall was also a member of the Thornton Commission, which developed a plan for distributing money to the state's needier school districts in Baltimore City and Prince George's County and, after legislative compromise, Montgomery County.
In 1999, although the 33rd legislative District is one of Maryland's most conservative with 6,700 more registered Republicans than Democrats, Neall switched parties on ideological grounds and became a Democrat. In a letter to Richard D. Bennett, the state GOP chairman and now U.S. District Court Judge, Neall said, "While I have from time to time felt uncomfortable and unwelcome in the Republican Party, (my) feelings have clearly worsened in recent years" because of the changing nature of the party.
In 2003, Baltimore City schools' chief executive, Bonnie S. Copeland requested that Neall help solve a severe budget deficit. In order to qualify for a $42 million loan from the state, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich requested that Neall draft a plan for fiscal and management accountability. Neall's financial rescue plan was rejected by the Baltimore City School Board, sending the system into crisis as it headed towards insolvency. Neall then created controversy with his abrupt resignation on the day that he delivered his report.
- Bowie, Liz, Schools head for layoffs, pay cuts, The Baltimore Sun, Feb. 10, 2004
- Blok, Katherine, Neall Defects from GOP, Capital News Service, Nov. 12, 1999
- Penn, Ivan, Annapolis respects Neall on difficult fiscal matters: Lawmakers shake heads after he quits schools post, The Baltimore Sun, Feb. 24, 2004
- White, Tanika, Neall resigns; school rescue in jeopardy, The Baltimore Sun, Feb. 24, 2004
- Sabar, Ariel, Greenip defeats Neall, wins Senate seat, The Baltimore Sun, November 6, 2002
O. James Lighthizer
|Anne Arundel County Executive
John G. Gary