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November 1, 2010

Campaign Diary Closing Down

Michael Kurtianyk

Tuesday, Oct. 26 – FCC Forum


The forum last Tuesday at Frederick Community College was an almost a repeat performance of the one conducted just before the primary. There were 10 candidates (not 11 – more on that later), and each of us was asked two questions, and then we could speak on up to five others.


The moderator was Professor Ken Kerr. What was unique about this evening’s forum was that, instead of video questions pre-recorded by people on the street, each question was read to us by different FCC students, as the question was projected on the screen behind us. I liked it a lot, and it gave college students an opportunity to be part of the political process.


There were only 10 candidates, not 11, at tonight’s forum. The 11th, a write-in candidate, could not participate. When I asked Cliff Cumber, of The Frederick News-Post, he told me that it was a policy decision. Candidates have up to one week before the election to submit the necessary paperwork to file as a write-in. As such, there could have been twice the amount of candidates as the 10 from the two major parties. Thus, it is the policy, whether you agree with it or not.


Wednesday, Oct. 27 – Resignation


Just before taping an interview on the Just Joan Show on, I received an email in which Mike Marschner, director of Frederick County’s Division of Utilities and Solid Waste Management, wrote (in the final paragraph):


Your (Commissioner Kai Hagen) treatment of staff over the last several years, who were directed by a formal BOCC Resolution to work on the WTE project, has been nothing less than unprofessional and childish. Do you really think this type of behavior and attacks on staff are justified or appropriate by an elected official. I do not, and this is one of the principal reasons that I have decided to submit my resignation/retirement from Frederick County.


Having just read it, I was very upset by it. It was uncharacteristic to have received this information in this manner, but things just came to a boiling point, I suppose, and my disappointment is that, if elected, I would have liked to work with Mr. Marschner. It’s a shame that things ended in this way, but when people are allowed to email using incendiary language, and expect a response from a county official, without support from members of the Board of County Commissioners, then the whole process reached a point that should have been stopped a long time ago.


Very sad….


Friday, Oct. 29 – Final Forum


The last forum of the campaign occurred at Homewood at Crumland Farms. The 11 candidates had the opportunity to mingle with the audience members then speak formally for up to five minutes, and then mingle some more. No questions could be asked by the audience.


I find it hard to believe that at this stage of the campaign, candidates are still reading their scripts to the audience. I feel that by now, people don’t want to be read to. We only had to talk for up to five minutes, and it continues to amaze me that whole scripts have to be read verbatim only four days before the general election. I can see bulleted lines on the back of a postcard, but not too much more.


* * * * * * * *


When this is posted, it will be the day before Election Day. I will be at the polling places putting up signs, and then resting before the BIG DAY. I will be at various polling places with my family on HUGE Tuesday, and then watching the results at various locations in Frederick.


I don’t know what will happen, but I know that I’ve done all I could, and stayed above many of the frays that have occurred during this campaign season. I hope it has been enough.


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