Kathryn L. Afzali (born May 27, 1957) was an American politician who represented district 4 in the Maryland House of Delegates from 2011 to 2019.
Afzali was born in San Francisco, California and raised in Middletown, Maryland. She is a graduate of Mount St. Mary's University. She was a columnist for the Frederick News-Post from 2003 to 2006.
Afzali was sworn in as a member of the Maryland House of Delegates in January 2011. She was assigned to the House Ways and Means Committee and to its Election Law and Education subcommittees. She is now the Ranking Republican on Ways and Means. She is also a member of the Women Legislators of Maryland. By the end of Afzali’s first legislative session in Annapolis, she sponsored or co-sponsored forty-nine bills.
Afzali has sponsored legislation to increase sanctions on drunk drivers with multiple offenses, and was responsible for "Anayah's Law", which allows Child Protective Services to be relieved of its obligation to reunite children with their parent if the parent has committed "severe physical abuse" against the child. In her second year, she pushed for legislation to require a photo ID when voting in the state of Maryland. In 2013 she co-sponsored legislation to make the cyber-bullying of a child a misdemeanor.
Her first successful piece of legislation was a honey standard which passed unanimously through both chambers and has been used as a model in other states. She introduced a Farm Estate Tax bill that eliminated state inheritance taxes.
2012 Congressional election
Governor Martin O'Malley proposed, and Maryland General Assembly adopted, a redistricting plan that reconfigured Republican incumbent U.S. Congressman Roscoe Bartlett's 6th congressional district to one that Barack Obama won in the 2008 presidential election. Portions of Baltimore and Harford counties as well as Carroll County were taken away from the 6th District during redistricting. More of Montgomery County was put into the district, while another part of Montgomery County was removed and added to northern Frederick County in 8th District, still safe for incumbent Chris Van Hollen.
The previous version of the district has President Obama at 40%, while the newly redrawn district has President Obama at 56%. On January 11, 2012, believing that Bartlett would be retiring, Afzali announced her intention to run for the GOP nomination to represent Maryland's 6th congressional district. At the last minute Bartlett decided that he would be running for reelection. He won the primary election with 44% of the vote in a crowded field but went on to lose the general election.
Afzali is a member of the United Methodist Church.