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Advertise on the Tentacle

January 4, 2018

Real Breaking News

Harry M. Covert

Breaking News! Alerts! Bulletins! Heavens to Betsy! I’m not scribbling for the teevee newsreaders. Stay with me gentle hearts, we’re zooming like a ray gun from Captain Video and Tom Corbett into 2018.


Few people will recall Al Hodge, the captain. The kids’ favorite in the early days of television where there were a few networks, or Tom Corbett, space cadet. They were obviously popular children’s shows leading swiftly into the space age, which is reality of today.


But, back to those times when networks had bulletins and breaking news. It was honest-to-goodness news and no editorial speak. Eric Severeid had not boomed onto the airways. May I say it again, newspapers were the records of the day. Alastair Cooke, the elegant English columnist and writer, was making a move to American journalism.


This is a long way getting into the latest Breaking News; not from the national scene, but perhaps some delicious rumors and make-believe about Maryland and Frederick County happenings.


Coming events over the next few months will bring national eyes and ears and anticipation to local events.


To begin with, Maryland’s race for governor will be sparkling and costly. The ins and outs will be at war. No kidding! It’s going to be a battle royalé as much delight as the professional rasslers ranting and raving for good over evil and vice versa.


The money will be flowing for good or ill.


The state’s General Assembly will be on the battleground, too. Senate seats and House of Delegate members will be rousting voters.


For certain, the Free State’s Senate and House wheezes will be attention-getters of the first rank. Fate of counties and communities are going to be seriously at risk.


It’s always entertaining to watch the boondoggles going on in Charm City where the politicians apparently are clueless on how to manage the tribulations, distresses and lawlessness that’s been ongoing for so long. If the Orioles and Ravens could just win some championships maybe things would change. Long shots on all levels.


Getting to the meat of this matter, the race for the heart and souls of Frederick County is underway. To begin with, the foolish charter form of government seems to have removed its county council from any authority.


The position of county executive, whether intentional or not, has become a marvelous first among equals spot. The CE has total dictatorial authority can – and does – ignore any measures proposed by council members. To the victor goes the spoils. What a grand position, for sure.


Candidates are lining up for the race this year to try and break the stranglehold on the executive’s position. It will be costly and rumors are running wild as to whom is going to win the Democratic and Republican nominations.


Bettors will have the big money on current executive Jan Gardner, the county’s top Democrat. She’ll be hard to beat even though she’s not announced her candidacy. There is no urgency. What Democrat would dare challenge her? None in all likelihood.


Three GOP leaders are in the race for executive —  County Councilman Kirby Delauter, Regina Williams, former county budget officer and Delegate Kathy Afzali (District 4) are gearing up to face Ms. Gardner.


The nomination battle will be busy at least for the Republican combatants. Each contender has strong networks.


All eyes will be glued to the GOP campaign. It’s early at this stage, but groundwork has been well underway.


Frederick’s race for the state Senate includes Republican Craig Giangrande, who’s been diligent for Senate District 3. Also interested in this Senate seat is Councilman Billy Shreve.


Jason Miller, a respected political operative from Mount Airy, has filed for a County Council seat. He is a former vice chairman of the county’s Republican Central Committee.


County Council President Bud Otis is expected to run for another term. He’s likely to announce later this month. Some chatter has emerged he could seek the executive’s post as an independent.


Another campaign will be incumbent Sheriff Chuck Jenkins. It’s doubtful he’ll have an opponent. This will be his third campaign for a four-year term.


Here’s a sad late News Break. The famed and popular Barbara Fritchie Restaurant on the Golden Mile, Route 40, has unexpectedly closed. A county loss, for certain.


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