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June 3, 2014

Looming Primary

Roy Meachum

Every election, primaries come up. This one arrives in three weeks: let the slaughtering begin. On June 24, you will select among the very politicians those to be on the ballot on November 4th. I still don’t understand why and how voters participate.


Casting for the governor might help, and there’s a new county government up for grabs. Very few people show up in the primaries. Eventually, Frederick electors will choose between the leading Democratic and Republican leaders for county executive: Jan Gardner and Blaine Young. The county pulls a switch on the rest of the state.


However, the political scion of the Young family has done many things to offend people: Montevue/Citizens lead the list. County Attorney John Mathias said it’s okay. But then he’s held the same job for more than 20 years. I can find no connection with the late Republican senator who frequently voted Democratic. No connection.


But lawyer Mathias has harrowed all sorts of storms. When Mrs. Gardner was the Board of County Commissioners’ president, there was a wind blowing from a wildly different direction; but as attorney he found legality behind Mrs. Gardner’s reasoning. Whoever wins I am confident the county attorney stands behind her/him.


Meanwhile, Mr. Young used to chew up his opposition several hours a day on WFMD, the station on which I appeared earlier in the day on a single morning, Friday. He has a cheering section, including barber Walter Mills; as he cuts hair, Mr. Mills tests each customer’s politics. I’ve never been in his chair.


In Frederick, we have a “county executive” that appears on the ballots this November. Forget the commissioners’ president, this new position is much more potent – which is why Commissioner David Gray filed in opposition to Blaine Young. Either way, Mr. Gray is dead politically; he knows that. In three weeks he slices his throat out in public.


The other interesting race is for sheriff. Chuck Jenkins and Kevin Grubbs are in opposition; they are both Republicans. I backed Mr. Jenkins consistently. I encouraged Captain Grubbs to run as opposition. Three sheriff’s deputies, working off duty, manned a local shopping center. There was a 26-year-old man who bucked their authority. Robert Ethan Saylor died for the price of a movie ticket. There were other incidents. Anyway, I saw no reason why former Frederick City Police Captain Grubbs shouldn’t challenge the sheriff.


For all sorts of reason, this year in the primaries you ought to vote. I’ll return to the subject in the three weeks ensuing.


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