No early voting in Maryland this year

September 04, 2006|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

Contrary to instructions in a sample ballot Washington County residents recently received in the mail, there will be no early voting in Maryland this year.

On Aug. 25, Maryland's Court of Appeals upheld a circuit court ruling that early voting - five extra days before the primary and general elections - is unconstitutional.

The Washington County Board of Elections had sent its sample ballot to the printer before an Anne Arundel circuit judge struck down early voting on Aug. 11. The sample ballot includes a notice that there will be early voting Sept. 5 through 9, but the appellate ruling on Aug. 25 ensures that there won't.

What do they think?

Two citizen groups have grilled Washington County Commissioner candidates on land issues.

Citizens to Protect Rights Political Action Committee, or CPR PAC, which focuses on landowners' rights, received responses from 17 of the 24 candidates who filed to run.


CPR PAC asked about charter home rule, eminent domain and rural rezoning among its seven questions.

Another group, Citizens for Protection of Washington County, or CPWC - which favors controlled growth - heard from 13 candidates. Its eight survey topics included housing density, farmland preservation and open government.

CPR PAC went one step further by endorsing Republican incumbents William J. Wivell and John C. Munson, plus six others: Republicans Terry Baker, John Barr and Jeff Hewett, and Democrats N. Linn Hendershot, Daniel Moeller and Lloyd "Pete" Waters.

The CPR PAC questions and candidate answers are posted at

CPWC doesn't have its questions and answers online, but Jim Laird, the group's president, said he'll forward them to whomever is interested, as long as he's not flooded with requests. His e-mail address is

See forums again

Two candidate forums sponsored by The Herald-Mail Co. last month can be seen again on Antietam Cable Television.

A forum held Aug. 16 for Washington County Commissioner candidates will air on Antietam Cable channel 19 on Tuesday at 8 p.m.

A forum held Aug. 17 for candidates for Washington County Board of Education, sheriff, state's attorney and House of Delegates Subdistrict 2C will air on Channel 19 on Thursday at 8 p.m.

The two forums will be shown back to back on Monday, Sept. 11, at 7 p.m.

Absentee deadline nears

Tuesday is the last day for registered Maryland voters to request an absentee ballot for the Sept. 12 primary.

Mailed applications must reach the board of elections by 4:30 p.m. Faxed applications will be accepted until 11:59 p.m.

For more information, call the Washington County Board of Elections at 240-313-2050.

Meet a Democrat

Democratic candidates for local offices will be at the Boonsboro American Legion on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. for a "meet-and-greet" session with the public. The South County Democratic Club is sponsoring the event.

GOP's home

Washington County's Republicans have invited the public to a grand opening of their headquarters on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The building is at 1423 Dual Highway, behind Dunkin' Donuts.

Chairwoman Paula Lampton said there will be refreshments and a 1 p.m. ribbon cutting.

Five women endorsed

As it does each year, a bipartisan political action committee called Women At The Table, or WATT, has endorsed female candidates.

For the Sept. 12 primary, WATT is supporting:

· Republican Doris J. Nipps and Democrat Donna L. Brightman for Washington County Commissioner

· Jacqueline Fischer and Ruth Anne Callaham in the nonpartisan Washington County Board of Education race

· Republican Gloria Bastian for judge of the orphan's court.

He's nothing if not optimistic

As part of the Democratic leadership in the Maryland House of Delegates, Del. John P. Donoghue, D-Washington, shares office space in Annapolis with House Majority Whip Anthony Brown, D-Prince George's. Brown is Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley's running mate in this year's gubernatorial race.

Donoghue, who faces two challengers this year, informed a few dozen O'Malley supporters Friday in Boonsboro that the Annapolis neighborhood was about to change - a little.

Brown, he predicted, will "be moving across the street to the statehouse, and I'll stay where I am."

Safety first

O'Malley and Brown acknowledged as they embarked on their "Working for Western Maryland" tour this weekend that they were treading on GOP turf.

Noting Brown's recent tour of duty in Iraq, O'Malley said his running mate "knows how to pilot a helicopter, which could come in handy if we're surrounded by a Republican Central Committee in a remote part of the state."

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