Hoyer, Cardin, other Democrats keep seats

The Calvert Recorder - - Front Page - By JESSE YEAT­MAN jyeat­man@somd­news.com

Al­though re-elected, Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md., 5th) once again came in be­hind his Repub­li­can chal­lenger in his home county, St. Mary’s, and in Calvert.

Hoyer won the high­est per­cent­age — 70 per­cent — of votes across his district, which in­cludes all of South­ern Mary­land and a por­tion of Prince Ge­orge’s County, al­low­ing him to once again hang on to his seat.

In St. Mary’s, how­ever, Repub­li­can Wil­liam A. Devine III had more votes, top­ping Hoyer by about 50.5

per­cent to 46 per­cent.

In Calvert, the long­time in­cum­bent came in slightly be­hind Devine, col­lect­ing just 47.8 per­cent of votes cast. Hoyer eas­ily won over Charles vot­ers, gar­ner­ing al­most 72 per­cent of the votes.

Devine and Hoyer far out­paced Green Party can­di­date Pat El­der of Lex­ing­ton Park and Ja­cob Pulcher, a Lib­er­tar­ian from Shady Side, who each had less than 2 per­cent of votes across the district.

Hoyer has rep­re­sented the district since 1981, and touts his work on pro­tect­ing ac­cess to af­ford­able health care, ex­pand­ing ac­cess to eco­nomic op­por­tu­nity and en­sur­ing lo­cal mil­i­tary bases and other fed­eral fa­cil­i­ties have re­sources they need.

“I am hon­ored to re­ceive the sup­port of vot­ers to con­tinue serv­ing them in the Fifth District,” Hoyer said in a state­ment is­sued af­ter the elec­tion. “I’ve worked hard through­out my time in Congress to ad­dress the is­sues most im­por­tant to my con­stituents, such as en­sur­ing all fam­i­lies have ac­cess to af­ford­able, quality health care; pro­tect­ing fair pay and ben­e­fits for our hard­work­ing fed­eral em­ploy­ees; ex­pand­ing ac­cess to eco­nomic op­por­tu­nity to all Mary­lan­ders; and en­sur­ing our mil­i­tary in­stal­la­tions have the re­sources they need to con­tinue serv­ing our na­tion.”

pub­li­can chal­lenger Craig Wolf 64 per­cent to 36 per­cent, with nearly all of state precincts re­port­ing.

Wolf beat Frosh by more than 18 per­cent­age points in St. Mary’s, though, and also had more votes in Calvert. Charles voted over­whelm­ingly for Frosh.

The state’s top fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer, Comptroller Peter Fran­chot (D), trounced Repub­li­can An­jali Reed Phukan 72 per­cent to 28 per­cent, with most precincts re­port­ing, win­ning a fourth term in of­fice.

Phukan gar­nered more votes in St. Mary’s than the in­cum­bent. Calvert and Charles res­i­dents cast more votes for Fran­chot.

Bal­lot ques­tions pass with ease

Vot­ers made de­ci­sions on two bal­lot ques­tions — both amend­ments to the Mary­land Con­sti­tu­tion. Both passed.

The first ques­tion, which had gar­nered 89 per­cent to 11 per­cent with most state precincts re­port­ing, spec­i­fies that, start­ing in 2020, the ed­u­ca­tion fund­ing from gaming rev­enues must be sup­ple­men­tal, and can­not be used as a sub­sti­tute for other school fund­ing al­ready re­quired by law. The mea­sure passed over­whelm­ing in St. Mary’s.

The new amend­ment re­quires the gov­er­nor to al­lo­cate at least $125 mil­lion in fiscal year 2020, $250 mil­lion in fiscal year 2021, and $375 mil­lion in fiscal year 2022.

“Ed­u­ca­tors are thrilled

that such an over­whelm­ing num­ber of Mary­lan­ders voted for in­creased fund­ing for our pub­lic schools,” Bal­ti­more County ele­men­tary school teacher and Mary­land State Ed­u­ca­tion As­so­ci­a­tion Pres­i­dent Cheryl Bost said in a re­lease. “The $500 mil­lion an­nu­ally that Ques­tion 1 will add is the first step to clos­ing the $2.9 bil­lion an­nual fund­ing gap that neg­a­tively im­pacts stu­dents, ed­u­ca­tors, and schools across the state. Keeping the prom­ise on casino rev­enues was the easy part.”

The sec­ond ques­tion amends the state con­sti­tu­tion to al­low qual­i­fied in­di­vid­u­als to regis­ter and vote on the same day. It passed 67 per­cent to 33 per­cent statewide, as of most precincts in the state re­ported. The mea­sure was ap­proved by 51.6 per­cent of St. Mary’s vot­ers.

Cur­rent law al­lows same-day reg­is­tra­tion and vot­ing dur­ing the early vot­ing. The amend­ment ex­pands that to in­clude Elec­tion Day, ac­cord­ing to the Mary­land Board of Elec­tions.

“At a time when other states are dis­en­fran­chis­ing vot­ers with un­nec­es­sary re­stric­tions, re­duc­ing bal­lot ac­cess, Mary­land sent a clear sig­nal in our pref­er­ence for open and ac­ces­si­ble elec­tions,” Da­mon Eff­in­g­ham, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of Com­mon Cause Mary­land, which sup­ported the mea­sure, said in a re­lease. “The Gen­eral Assem­bly should heed th­ese results and en­sure that a sys­tem

is in place for elec­tion day reg­is­tra­tion for the 2020 elec­tions.”

Calvert weighs in on na­tional trends

As elec­tion results poured in across the coun­try Tues­day night, Calvert County Demo­cratic Cen­tral Com­mit­tee Chair David Salazar al­most pre­dicted what would hap­pen in na­tional House and Se­nate races.

“Democrats are taking the House. I’m call­ing pur­ple for the Se­nate. Dems are go­ing to take some seats, but that’s an up­hill bat­tle,” Salazar said at the lo­cal Democrats’ elec­tion watch party at Adam’s Tap­house and Grille.

Democrats did man­age to take the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, but Se­nate con­trol will re­main with the GOP.

As far as Democrats in Calvert, Salazar said they’re just get­ting started af­ter knock­ing on a record num­ber of doors, can­vass­ing and per­form­ing grass­roots out­reach this elec­tion.

“We’re go­ing to take what we’ve done for 2018 and ex­pand on it for 2020,” he said.

On Wed­nes­day, Salazar con­grat­u­lated ev­ery­one who was suc­cess­ful this elec­tion cy­cle, from lo­cal to na­tional races.

Calvert County Repub­li­can Cen­tral Com­mit­tee Chair Ella En­nis said at

the na­tional level, Democrats have been out­ra­geous in their treat­ment of the Se­nate process and are not in­ter­ested in hav­ing good govern­ment, but rather a “hate­ful po­lit­i­cal voice.”

“They did not share hon­esty and in­tegrity in that ju­di­cial nom­i­na­tion process,” she said, re­fer­ring to the con­fir­ma­tion of Supreme Court Jus­tice Brett Ka­vanaugh, which was met with con­tro­versy af­ter he was ac­cused of sex­ual as­sault decades af­ter the al­le­ga­tions took place.

“I’m very pleased the U.S. Se­nate will re­main un­der Repub­li­can con­trol,” En­nis said.

But in re­gard to Democrats re­gain­ing con­trol of the House, En­nis said, “I am not happy to see her be the speaker again,” re­fer­ring to Demo­cratic House Mi­nor­ity Leader Nancy Pelosi of Cal­i­for­nia. “The Democrats have fu­eled ob­sti­nance” and are not will­ing to give Pres­i­dent Trump and his ad­min­is­tra­tion “a fair chance.”

En­nis did not wish to comment on ei­ther Cardin’s or Hoyer’s wins. A ma­jor­ity of Calvert vot­ers did not choose ei­ther of the in­cum­bents, but En­nis did say “vot­ers here tend to be more con­ser­va­tive. They don’t want an over-pow­er­ful govern­ment. They look at can­di­dates’ pol­icy, not their race or gen­der.”

This year, Calvert chose an all-male board of Repub­li­can com­mis­sion­ers. Ad­dress­ing the gen­er­al­iza­tion that Repub­li­can women do not vote across party lines just to sup­port a fe­male can­di­date, En­nis said, “I think Repub­li­can women have very strong ideals but are not afraid to sup­port an ideal. ... Look at Mar­garet Phipps,” a Demo­crat who won re-elec­tion over Repub­li­can chal­lenger Mark Lynch in Calvert’s regis­ter of wills race.

En­nis also noted Calvert’s clerk of the cir­cuit court, Kathy P. Smith, is a Demo­crat who ran un­op­posed in this year’s elec­tion.

Go­ing for­ward, the lo­cal GOP chair said she hopes “we will all re­flect on the turmoil and vit­riol that has hap­pened over the last two years and in­stead work on the is­sues and not get­ting into the per­son­al­i­ties.

“We should put forth ideas to im­prove the na­tion, coun­try and state and be fair to all peo­ple. End the anger and out­bursts [by] the me­dia and Democrats — it is very un­fair,” En­nis said, not­ing there is much that is pos­i­tive to re­flect on un­der the cur­rent ad­min­is­tra­tion, such as a good econ­omy.

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