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As campaign-finance rules change, Baltimore developer Edward St. John floods Maryland politics with cash

As campaign-finance rules change, Baltimore developer Edward St. John floods Maryland politics with cash

In April, the Maryland Board of Elections made a momentous announcement: In order to comply with a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling, the total amount of money Maryland political donors may lawfully give to campaigns in a four-year period is now unlimited, instead of being capped at $10,000. At St. John Properties, a real-estate firm headed by developer Edward St. John, the change was taken to heart: Campaign-finance data show that 69 companies based at St. John’s Baltimore-area headquarters gave almost $475,000 to Maryland campaigns this year, more than 30 percent of the $1.52 million those companies gave since 2005. The data bear out what a St. John beneficiary, Republican state...

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