This week saw the deadline for voter registration and change in party affiliation for this month’s Primary Election in Maryland.
Candidates will be selected in county, state and federal races that will be decided in November.
Early voting for the 2018 Primary begins on June 14and runs until June 21. Voters can cast their early ballots in the County Administration Building.
The formal Primary election day is June 26. Voters who go to the polls on that day will cast their votes in the district voting locations.
There is a lot of campaigning occurring in Cecil County, but the county elected offices are only competitive for the Republican Party. While all should come out to vote in the primary, Maryland has a closed primary system, meaning you can only vote for your favorite candidates within the party where you have registered. In other words, Democrats cannot vote for a Republican candidate in the Primary.
It is often difficult for the average busy person to discern the differences among the candidates, so I will give you some valuable, albeit tongue-in-cheek advice.
Beware of the candidate who says they are running to “give back to my community.” How do we know they have something to give that we actually want or need? Also, this phrase sometimes means the candidate has not really gone out and studied the issues, they just know they are great and can do the job better than anyone else.
Watch out for the candidates with the blanket statements. If they say the budget needs to be cut, ask them where would they cut it. Often, they just point to what they call waste, but they cannot actually identify specifics. This means they do not know.
The Economy is more than just retail. A number of candidates can only discuss how they think we need a department store or steakhouse in the county. Be careful. Economic development offices focus on bringing industry and technology businesses into the area. Retail will follow.
Candidates who do not answer questions or who post information about themselves without the option to make a comment are frightened to hear from you because they know they might not be able to answer your questions. Run from these people.
Never believe a candidate who thinks they can “run government like a business.” No matter what you have heard, government is NOT a business. A business is set up for profit. Government is there to protect and serve. They cannot be run in the same manner except for looking for management efficiencies.
Ask the one important question…How do you view your role as an elected official? Some candidates, if elected, will do whatever they want. Your input will not influence them. Other candidates come into the race with a commitment to listen to all sides and to put aside their own agenda when faced with a landslide of public opinion in opposition. Find those who will listen.