In a joint session of the Maryland Legislature, lawmakers mourned the loss of their colleague, Delegate Michael Busch of Anne Arundel County, who had served as the Speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates since 2003.
Busch passed away Sunday following health complications emanating from a liver surgery in 2017. He was diagnosed with pneumonia a few weeks ago. His Chief of Staff said his health took a decline over the weekend and he was placed on a ventilator on Sunday morning. Busch passed away at 3:22 p.m. on Sunday at the age of 72.
As WGMD News previously reported, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan ordered flags in the state to half staff until Busch’s internment. In a statement released Sunday, the Governor said he was “This is a profoundly sad day for Maryland. Mike Busch was a giant in our government — the longest serving Speaker in our state’s history. He cared deeply about impacting the lives of Marylanders, and his legacy is evident in his many legislative achievements.” Mr. Hogan continued “Speaker Busch and I came from different sides of the aisle, but we often came together in the best interests of the people of Maryland.”
State Senate President Mike Miller, joined by the President Pro-Tempore of the House Adrienne Jones, who has filled in for Busch in his absence spoke on Busch’s life and legacy on the floor of the House.
A Baltimore and Anne Arundel County native, Busch entered the political fray in the 1980’s, being elected to the Maryland House of Delegates. Prior to that Busch served as an athletics coach and educator.
Among his most notable legislative achievements include championing the passage of same-sex marriage in the State, which eventually went to a public referendum, raising income taxes as part of a special session, repealing Maryland’s death penalty and tightening laws relating to motor vehicle operation while under the influence of alcohol.
Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.