As a Democrat, I really don’t have much business weighing in on the Republican gubernatorial candidates. But, I did approach all the Republicans in the race, and the candidates themselves made it very easy for me to pick my favorite among them. Only one of them bothered to answer my questions, and that candidate happens to agree with me on all of my three priority issues. Thus, my endorsement goes to David Craig.
As I pointed out in my Mizeur endorsement post, I think it does tell something about a politician when they respond to a citizen activist like me. If a politician doesn’t care about my views during the election season, how can I expect him or her to care about me after the election?
I realize that no Republican is likely to care about my endorsement in their gubernatorial primary. However, I want to point out that my election reform advocacy is very much non-partisan in nature. In reality, due to the Democratic dominance in Maryland politics, my efforts are mostly aimed at reducing the power of Democratic incumbents and party insiders. Frankly, I am a bit surprised that Maryland Republicans have not been hopping on the good governance bandwagon in greater numbers. It is one of the issues that could help them find a way out of the political wilderness.
A big hat tip to David Craig for being the first Republican gubernatorial candidate to respond to my questions. And not only did he respond, he agrees with my priorities! Craig’s responses are below (in red):
- If elected, will you actively work to outlaw candidate slates? – Yes
- If elected, will you actively work to outlaw “sample ballots” used by candidate slates as political advertisements? – Yes
- If elected, will you actively work to establish an independent, nonpartisan system for drawing legislative and congressional districts? – Yes
Now all I need is for the other Republican candidates to tell me where they stand on these issues.
Now that the February 25, 2014 filing deadline for candidacy has passed, we know who all is in the Maryland gubernatorial race. According to the Maryland Board of Elections website, these are our gubernatorial hopefuls:
Anthony Brown/Ken Ulman
Doug Gansler/Jolene Ivey
Ralph Jaffe/Freda Jaffe
Heather Mizeur/Delman Coates
Charles U. Smith/Clarence Tucker (no website)
Cindy Walsh/Mary Wingate-Pennacchia
David Craig/Jeannie Haddaway
Ron George/Shelley Aloi
Larry Hogan/Boyd Rutherford
Charles Lollar/Ken Timmerman
Brian Vaeth/Duane Davis
Shawn Quinn/Lorenzo Gaztanaga
I have submitted my three questions to all of these candidates. As of today, only Heather Mizeur and Shawn Quinn have had the courtesy of responding to my questions. I will continue reporting the responses and non-responses I receive from the candidates here on this blog.
I am a Democrat, but on this one I cannot ignore the facts. I need to give some kudos to the Republican gubernatorial hopefuls. All three declared Republican candidates for governor—David Craig, Ron George, and Charles Lollar—have a section on their websites articulating what their platform and vision for Maryland entails. I know, the bar is very low. But at least these guys cleared it, unlike the pitiful contenders on the Democratic side.
While the Republican candidates are kind enough to tell voters where they want to take us, I was a little surprised that I did not find a single mention on their platform pages about the good governance issues I am advocating for: slates, sample ballots, and redistricting reform. If nothing else, I thought the Republicans would have plans to do something about the gerrymandering that has been so directly aimed at them.