Is Olszewski Really Up By 19 Points?

Maryland Matters sent a few shockwaves throughout Baltimore County this morning when they reported on a poll that Democratic Baltimore County Executive candidate John Olszewski, Jr. had a 19-point lead over GOP nominee Al Redmer, Jr.

A representative from the Olszewski campaign immediately shared the Maryland Matters article on the popular Facebook page “Baltimore County Politics”. The poll showed Olszewski winning 53 to 34 percent. However; Maryland Matters reported that the poll was conducted between Sept. 6 to 11 and that it was a “Democratic Poll” .
Redmer downplayed the poll by releasing a statement on social media.

“In a desperate attempt to generate a decent headline and reinvigorate their dried up donor base the Olszewski campaign released a month old poll that is in no way accurate at the present time. We’ve beaten Olszewski to mail and TV, and our polling shows we have successfully closed the gap in just a few weeks,” Redmer said.

“Our campaign has momentum, which is evident by the half-dozen major endorsements we’ve received over the last three weeks, as well as the voter enthusiasm and financial support we’ve accrued. As we close in on election day our positive message of fixing our schools and making Baltimore County safer and more affordable is resonating with voters, who are rejecting the dangerous Jealous/Olszewski agenda.”

The poll also reported that Olszewski is winning 49 percent to 35 percent “in the traditionally more conservative southeast portion of Baltimore County.” I’m not sure if the “southeast portion” is all of the 6th Legislative District, but Olszewski lost the senate race in the 6th District to current GOP Sen. Johnny Ray Salling 48 to 44 in 2014.

This race will come down to the 6th District. With Gov. Larry Hogan’s performance in 2014 and projected high numbers in 2018, Redmer must win in the Dundalk/Essex area. If Hogan is going to get around 60 percent of the vote countywide, Olszewski is going to need many of those Hogan voters to cast votes for him too. There are plenty of Hogan voters in the 6th District and that is why he is staying away from Ben Jealous.

So what is the truth? Maryland Matters has been known to lean to the left and why are they now reporting on a Democratic poll from September? I do believe that Olszewski was ahead in September, but not by 19 points. Again this was a Democratic poll. I also believe that Redmer has closed the gap with his mailers, television ads and recent endorsements from the Baltimore County Police and Fire unions.

Can the Baltimore Sun or Goucher College conduct an independent poll so we can see how this race truly stands?

Redmer Picks up Baltimore County Police & Fire Unions Endorsement


Republican Al Redmer picked up two huge endorsements as the Baltimore County Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 4 and the Baltimore County Professional Firefighters Association announced that they were endorsing the GOP candidate for Baltimore County Executive.

“IAFF 1311 is proud to support Al Redmer for Baltimore County Executive, and our members are confident that he is the right candidate not only for the men and women of the fire service, but for all Baltimore County residents,” Michael Day said from the firefighters union. “We look forward to working with Mr. Redmer over the next four years to improve working conditions for our fire fighters and make sure they have the resources they need to serve the people of Baltimore County.”

Cole Weston of the police union also said his union is proud to support Redmer.

“Al Redmer is the only candidate who truly understands the challenges that our law enforcement officers face on a daily basis, and FOP Lodge #4 is proud to support him in his race to become the next Baltimore County Executive,” Weston explained.

“We’re confident that under a Redmer administration, Baltimore County will be a safer place to live and work, which will benefit all of our residents and communities.”

This is in addition to Redmer receiving the Baltimore County sheriff’s deputies (Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 25) endorsement over the summer.

“I could not be more proud to have the support of these fine unions and the brave men and women who put their lives on the line every single day in service to our communities and the people of Baltimore County,” Redmer said in a statement.

“Throughout our campaign, I have consistently spoken of the failure of Baltimore County to adequately fund our most basic needs, and the fire and police departments have often been direct victims of that. For too long, these men and women have not had the support that they should from local government. As County Executive, I will make sure that the men and women who protect and serve our communities have the support and resources they need to do their jobs. They undoubtedly deserve it, and under a Redmer administration, they are going to get it.”

There was a time when all of the union endorsements went to Democratic candidates but there has been a shift, especially with police and firefighters.

His Democratic opponent John Olszewski, Jr. has been endorsed by the Teachers of Baltimore County (TABCO) and by multiple labor unions, but police unions have endorsed many GOP candidates during this election. It was really no surprise when Maryland Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) voted to unanimously endorse Republican Gov. Larry Hogan over his Democratic challenger Ben Jealous. Many believe that Jealous and his anti-police rhetoric made it an easy endorsement of Hogan.

The Maryland FOP also endorsed Republican Attorney General nominee Craig Wolf over Democratic Attorney Gen. Brian Frosh.

For decades, police unions have favored Democratic candidates over Republican candidates. That is starting to change here in Maryland.