South­ern Mary­lan­ders head­ing to con­ven­tions

Trump, Clin­ton sup­port­ers win del­e­gate seats in pri­mary

Maryland Independent - - Community Forum - By JOHN WHAR­TON jwhar­ton@somd­ Twit­ter: @JohnEn­tNews

South­ern Mary­land res­i­dents align­ing them­selves with the win­ning pres­i­den­tial can­di­dates in this week’s pri­mary elec­tion in Mary­land re­ceived the most votes in their bid to serve as del­e­gates at the up­com­ing nom­i­nat­ing con­ven­tions.

Don­ald Trump re­ceived more than half the Repub­li­can votes in the state’s 5th Con­gres­sional District, which in­cludes the three South­ern Mary­land coun­ties, as he eas­ily won the state’s GOP pri­mary, and Hil­lary Clin­ton re­ceived more than twice as many votes than her main chal­lenger in the re­gion as she also pre­vailed statewide in the Demo­cratic con­test.

The con­gres­sional district’s three del­e­gates at the Repub­li­can Na­tional Con­ven­tion to be held in July in Cleve­land will be Charles County res­i­dents Collins A. Bai­ley, his son, Caleb Bai­ley, and Jim Craw­ford. In the event one of them can’t be there, the three al­ter­nates elected this week in the district, also aligned with Trump, in­clude Den­nis Di Bello of Calvert County and Charles County res­i­dents Vanessa Jones and Tony Me­doro.

Collins Bai­ley, the 62-yearold chair­man of the Charles County Repub­li­can Cen­tral Com­mit­tee and 1st vice chair with the party’s statewide or­ga­ni­za­tion, said this week that he ran in 2008 and 2012 as a del­e­gate can­di­date in sup­port of Ron Paul, who sought the GOP nom­i­na­tion for pres­i­dent both times while serv­ing as a con­gress­man from Texas.

“I feel that it’s im­por­tant that peo­ple who have strong con­vic­tions go to the con­ven­tion,” Bai­ley said, and en­sure “we would have strong rep­re­sen­ta­tion in Cleve­land.”

The work in­cludes more than nom­i­nat­ing a can­di­date for pres­i­dent, he said, in that del­e­gates at the con­ven­tion also “work on the [party’s is­sues] plat­form and work on the rules.”

Bai­ley, a self-em­ployed lum­ber bro­ker, didn’t weigh in on the on­go­ing con­tro­versy as to whether Trump’s lead in del­e­gates will se­cure him the nom­i­na­tion on the first bal­lot. “I’m not much into spec­u­lat­ing,” Bai­ley said. “We want to make sure the peo­ple of the 5th District are heard and rep­re­sented.”

The win­ning del­e­gate can­di­dates from the con­gres­sional district sup­port­ing Clin­ton, con­sist­ing of four women and five men, in­clude five peo­ple liv­ing in the tri-county area — Edith J. Pat­ter­son and Rus­sell Yates, both of Charles County, Amanda Cross of St. Mary’s, and Calvert County res­i­dents Marie L. Duffield and Mon­ica Lee Sil­bas.

Pat­ter­son, 70, serves as del­e­gate from Charles County in the Mary­land leg­is­la­ture, and her re­sume in­cludes a 30-year ca­reer as a col­lege coun­selor and ad­min­is­tra­tor, as well as serv­ing as a mem­ber of the county’s board of ed­u­ca­tion and as a county com­mis­sioner. She was chair­man of the county’s Demo­cratic Cen­tral Com­mit­tee in 2004 when she was ap­pointed to the Mary­land del­e­ga­tion, in sup­port of John Kerry’s nom­i­na­tion at that year’s con­ven­tion.

Pat­ter­son sees her sup­port for Clin­ton this sum­mer at the con­ven­tion in Philadel­phia as be­ing part of a group ef­fort, one with a mis­sion that “sup­ports can­di­dates that you be­lieve in.”

Pat­ter­son noted Clin­ton’s call for mak­ing col­lege ed­u­ca­tion more af­ford­able, vot­ing rights, re­form­ing the crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem and pur­su­ing af­ford­able health care.

“These are things that she be­lieves in. These are things that I be­lieve in,” Pat­ter­son said. “Her po­si­tions and my po­si­tions are very sim­i­lar.”



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