Maryland Teenage Republicans, commonly known as MDTARS is an official auxiliary member organization of the Maryland Republican Party (MDGOP) and holds a charter from the National Teenage Republicans. MDTAR's is a grassroots organization which is dedicated to the causes of the Republican Party and to help elect Republican candidates to office. MDTAR's membership, with the exception of the principle founders and State Advisors, are made up of high school attending teenagers between 13-19 years old. History and Formation The idea of a statewide organization of Republican teenagers began in mid-2002 with the dream and vision of principle founders Justin Shuy, Daniel Zubairi, and Justin Fishbein. In collaboration with MDGOP Chairman Michael Steele, the executive structure and bylaws were adopted and placed into effect under the oversight of Chairman Michael Steele and his successor, Chairman John Kane. The group was formally approved as an auxiliary member of the MDGOP in December 2002 at a MDGOP Executive Board meeting in December 2002. Since its inception, the goal of the MDTAR's has been to branch out in the hope of one day forming a network of 24 county (and Baltimore City) TAR's organizations within the state of Maryland. Each County and Regional TAR chair are highly motivated and dedicated individuals who help to shape the focus of the MDTAR's at the state level. MDTAR's executive leadership have been highly supportive of a member-driven organization while ensuring necessary supervision and oversight. Recent Campaign Efforts Some most notable efforts spearheaded by members of MDTAR's include the popular ballot referendum effort of Maryland for Responsible Enforcement. It was the first bi-partisan collaboration involving MDTAR's. Although members were unable to legally participate in the physical collection of petition signatures, or to sign the petitions themselves, they were instrumental in spreading the word out to local elected officials and County GOP Central Committees. Signature MDTAR's campaign efforts include: Bob Ehrlich for Governor (2002) and (2006), Congresswoman Morella re-election campaign (2002), George W. Bush re-election campaign (2004), Michael Steele for Senate (2006), John McCain for President (2008), Andy Harris for Congress (2008). MDTAR's executive advisors and member leadership have set new goals in the 2008/2009 election year(s), primarily the desire to deploy out-of-state to aid GOP candidates in neighboring states. MDTAR's has expressed interest in deployments to Virginia and New Jersey to aid in the promising campaigns of GOP Gubernatorial candidates, Bob McDonnell in Virginia and Chris Christie in New Jersey. The ability to deploy to the state of New Jersey would be new ground gained for the rapidly expanding MDTAR's grassroots organization. MDTAR's aided in the 2008 John McCain "72-Hour Campaign" in Northern Virginia, an integral part of the crucial battleground state. MDTAR's representatives have attended the 2004 and 2008 RNC National Conventions. Financial Support The Maryland Teenage Republicans' sole financial supporter is Daniel Zubairi, MDTAR's State Advisor, Founder, and elected McCain Delegate (2008). Unaffiliated Groups In August 2009, several individuals unaffiliated with MDTAR's filed paperwork creating a 527-group calling itself "Maryland Teenage Republicans, Inc." There have been suggestions that the 527-group violated the point of law known as "First Use," in using such a name. The 527-group has sparked a brewing Election Law controversy as it has tried to claim affiliation to the Maryland Republican Party, although by law 527-groups are not permitted to coordinate with a political party or election campaign. The 527-group has also tried to unilaterally remove the existing MDTAR's organization and executive leadership and replace it with an arbitrarily selected Board of Directors. An overwhelming majority of MDTAR's members and executive advisors have reputiated and opposed this effort.