Last Tuesday, Marylanders casted their ballots for the statewide offices of Governor, Attorney General, and Comptroller. While many of the election results were widely anticipated by most major polls, Maryland’s incoming Governor surprised many Montgomery County voters.
Democrat Peter Franchot won reelection for Comptroller over Republican candidate William Campbell, with 62.5 percent of voters picking Franchot, who found his strongest support in Prince George’s County with over 180,000 votes, followed by Montgomery County and Baltimore County. Franchot, who once represented Takoma Park in the state legislature, was elected Comptroller for the third time. The Comptroller oversees and manages the state budget, pays state employees, collects state taxes and audits taxpayers, and prepares the financial reports of the state government.
Democrat Brian Frosh won election for Attorney General. With strong support in Montgomery County and Prince George’s County, Frosh gained an overall 55.5 percent of votes. After over 25 years of experience in the Maryland legislature representing southern Montgomery County, Frosh began his campaign for Attorney General in January, winning a primary campaign against Baltimore County Delegate Jon Cardin.
The most surprising outcome of the election was the election of the Governor, won by Republican candidate Larry Hogan against Democrat and Lieutenant-Governor Anthony Brown with 51.4 percent to 46.9 percent. Hogan launched his campaign from his organization, called Change Maryland, which advocated for lower taxes and reduced state government spending. With a Republican Governor taking office, Maryland will, for the first time in seven years, have a government divided between the executive branch and the overwhelmingly Democratic legislature.
“I think the result of the election was due to lack of voter turnout. Maryland is generally a Democratic state. I’m not sure what type of change the new governor is going to bring… [but] I’m hoping he recognizes important issues affecting students right now, such as SMOB voting rights and school construction,” said Omisa Jinsi, a freshman at Churchill High School in Potomac.
However, Wootton senior Ben Feshbach is more optimistic. “The O’Malley Administration has been, in a number of ways, not nearly as respectful to Montgomery County’s needs as it should be, especially when it comes to funding for our schools… there will be a paradigm shift in the politicians’ education policy. Hopefully Montgomery County’s representatives in Annapolis will play the political climate well and the shift will benefit MCPS.”
Article by Iman Durrani, MoCo Student press correspondent