State House Update: Primary election sees some unexpected upsets

After a primary election with one of the lowest voter turnouts in recent history, the field is set for the 2014 general election. Lt. Governor Anthony Brown soundly won the Democratic nomination for Governor, winning 20 of 24 jurisdictions, while businessman Larry Hogan won the Republican nomination. The two will square off in the general election on November 4, 2014.

In one of the more high-profile races of the primary, Montgomery County veteran Senator Brian Frosh defeated Delegate Jon Cardin and Delegate Aisha Braveboy to become the Democratic nominee for Attorney General, a seat vacated by Doug Gansler when he decided to run for Governor. Frosh will face Republican Jeffrey Pritzker in the fall.

Tuesday’s primary not only decided the candidates for Governor and Attorney General, but also decided winners and losers in many state and local races that either had no challengers or had challengers only within one party.

In Frederick, Senator David Brinkley lost to Tea Party challenger Michael Hough. The moderate Republican, who served as the Senate Minority Leader, has been a member of the Senate since 2003.

In Baltimore City, Delegate Keiffer Mitchell found himself battling with two other incumbents for one seat following the 2010 redistricting process and lost by less than 200 votes to Delegate Keith Haynes.

Other incumbents who lost their seats include Carroll County Delegate Donald Elliot (R), Delegate Darren Swain (D) from Prince George’s County, and Eastern Shore Delegate Michael Smigiel (R).

Notable winners from last Tuesday’s primary include Brooke Lierman (D) in Baltimore City, who received the most votes of anyone in her district and will likely become one of the city’s newest Delegates; Delegate John Olszewski, Jr. (D), who won his party’s nomination for Senate in District 6 (Baltimore County) and will square off against Republican Johnny Ray Sailing in the fall; and incumbent Senator Richard Madaleno (D), who held off challenger Dana Beyer to hold his seat in Montgomery County.

Among local races, perhaps the most unexpected was the defeat of Baltimore City State’s Attorney Gregg Bernstein, who lost his race to challenger Marilyn Mosby. Bernstein defeated incumbent Patricia Jessamy by a slim margin in 2010.

In Anne Arundel County, County Executive Laura Neuman lost to Delegate Steve Schuh in the Republican primary race that saw more than a million dollars spent. Schuh will face former county sheriff George Johnson, IV in the general election.

In the state’s congressional races, all of Maryland’s incumbents beat their respective challengers to win the nomination for their party. Neither Senate seat was up for re-election this year.

A full listing of results from the primary election can be seen here

Best wishes,

Donald C. Fry,
GBC President & CEO


Eye on Annapolis

During the 2014 legislative session, the General Assembly passed the state’s $39 B operating budget, including some funds that will not be released until a number of studies are conducted and submitted to the budget committees. Below is a list of some of the studies currently being undertaken during the months while the General Assembly is not in session:

Baltimore Red Line: The Maryland Transit Administration is required to submit a report by July 1, 2014 on the expected contributions by Baltimore City and Baltimore County toward the construction of the Baltimore Red Line before they can receive $100,000 in funding.

Phosphorus Management Tool: Before the Maryland Department of Agriculture can receive funds for the final development and submission of new regulations regarding phosphorus management, they must submit a full economic analysis on the impact of the proposed regulations on the State’s Chesapeake Bay restoration efforts and on the people who would be required to follow such regulations.

Better Treatment for Mental Illness: The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene may not receive $100,000 in funds until they submit recommendations on how to improve treatment and service options for individuals involved with the court system who suffer from mental illness, intellectual disabilities, and substance abuse.

Baltimore City Detention Center: The Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services may not use $600,000 of their funds until they submit a report on the various security issues at the Baltimore City Detention Center. The report is due on November 1, 2014.

Need-Based Financial Aid and Historically Black Colleges and Universities: The Maryland Higher Education Commission has been tasked with submitted recommendations on how to improve the State’s need-based financial aid program before they can receive a portion of their funds. In addition, nearly $5 M in MHEC funds is restricted until the agency submits a report on how enhancement funds for historically black colleges and universities will be spent. That report is due on July 1, 2014.

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