2014 Elections Look Explosive
The eight-year reign of Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley will end in early 2014, and not a moment too soon. In addition, there will be elections in the state Senate, House of Delegates, and the new Frederick County charter government that will prove to be important.
Let’s begin with the gubernatorial elections. On the Republican side, there are many candidates who are coming out of the woodwork in this no-incumbent race. Similarly to how Bob Ehrlich won in 2002, this would be the perfect time for the Republicans to regain the top seat in the state.
Possible contenders include Harford County Executive David Craig, Frederick County Commissioner Blaine Young, “ChangeMaryland” CEO and former Ehrlich appointee Larry Hogan, failed congressional candidate in MD’s 5th District Charles Lollar, and 2012 U.S. Senate Republican Nominee Dan Bongino.
Larry Hogan has not been fundraising, but he will definitely throw his hat in the ring. In addition, David Craig doesn’t know how to fundraise, which explains why Blaine Young has the most money out of any of the possible GOP candidates.
Mr. Lollar has a “Draft Charles Lollar for Governor” group that meets, but rumor has it that it’s run by him and a small group of supporters. That leaves Dan Bongino, who has a nationwide donor base, strong volunteer presence statewide, and supporters who are absolutely crazy about him. Out of these possible candidates, I would say Dan Bongino would receive the Republican nomination.
On the opposing side, Attorney General Doug Gansler has been eyeing the top state office, just like Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown has for eight years. There is no doubt that the Democrats have been preparing Mr. Brown to run for governor ever since he and Governor O’Malley won eight years ago. These preparations even include his own personal website (http://anthonybrown.com/) that looks more like a campaign website. If the election were today, I would say Lieutenant Governor Brown would receive the Democratic nomination.
The House of Delegates elections will prove to be another hot topic, especially in Frederick County. Most notably, Del. Kathy Afzali (R., 4A) will have some trouble getting through a primary election. The delegate, who once described herself as “unapologetically conservative,” might have changed her philosophy a little bit when she voted during this legislative session for the governor’s budget, a wide expansion of spending and taxes. No doubt that Republican competitors in the primary election will cruise to victory over Delegate Afzali solely based on this vote.
But Delegate Afzali is ambitious. With one legislative session under her belt, she felt experienced enough to run for U.S. Congress rather than fulfilling her four year commitment to the voters that elected her to the House of Delegates. It would be surprising, after that stunt, for her to run for re-election. My guess would be State Senate for Sen. David Brinkley’s seat.
As for the news Frederick County government, Blaine Young will most likely drop his gubernatorial bid and run for county executive. Although Commissioner Billy Shreve has already begun fundraising for that position, there’s no way he would go against Blaine, leaving his best bet to be on the county council.
So, there you have it. These next elections will prove to be major for not only Frederick County, but also for Maryland as a whole. With such things as the war on guns in Annapolis, or the most recent gas tax hike, let’s hope Maryland can come together and vote the “Right” way.