My Assessment of Maryland Matters’ Assessment of Delegate Races

Maryland Matters [MM] is a great news source for Maryland Politics and they had a break down on their assessment of the most competitive House of Delegate races two weeks ago. According to MM, there is going to be a blue wave across Maryland in the Delegate races.

Despite Gov. Larry Hogan’s increasing poll numbers and the possibility of Republicans picking up three to seven seats in the Maryland Senate, MM believes that Democrats can increase their 71 to 50 majority in the House of Delegates. This assessment is based on campaign finance reports. It’s true that some Democrats have some impressive cash numbers, but cash does not always win elections. I’m more impressed with poll numbers. I do see a few races where incumbent GOP seats could be in danger, but there are other races where it is unrealistic to think the Democrat has a chance. There are also some Democratic seats in play that were not mentioned in this article.

Over the next three posts, I will respectively explain where I think MM is right, where I think they are wrong and what they missed.

Today- Where we agree

GOP Weak Spots

District 30A
As I mentioned a few weeks ago, this is a split district that includes Democratic Speaker Michael Busch and outgoing Republican Delegate Herb McMillian.
There was some excitement for the GOP as former Congressional candidate Mark Plaster entered this race. Many dreamed of McMillan and Plaster knocking out Busch in this two-member Annapolis area-district, but then McMillan decided not to seek re-election and Plaster dropped out of the race.
Now Democrats believe that their candidate Alice Cain can take McMillian’s vacant seat. I am a little concerned, but I believe Republican candidate Bob O’Shea will retain McMillan’s seat with Larry Hogan’s strong numbers in the district.

District 34A
This is another two-seat split district with Republican Glen Glass and Democrat Mary Ann Lisanti. Both delegates represent southeast Harford County. I haven’t seen a poll in that district, but I would predict that this is a moderate district that probably has a lot of Hogan Democrats. That would be helpful to Glass and his running mate JD Russell, but as MM reported, Lisanti had over $33,000 in her account compared to Glass who has less than $2,000. This district could go blue with Lisanti and her Democrat running mate Steve Johnson, might go red with Glass and Russell or could remain a split district with Glass and Lisanti.

GOP Bright Spots

District 31A
MM has District 31A Democratic Del. Ned Carey in trouble and I agree. Brooks Bennett has been a great campaigner and has been working hard for over a year and a half. This is a conservative district in northern Anne Arundel County where Carey won by only 523 votes in 2014.
There are many more Democratic seats in play that MM did not mention, but this is one that they did acknowledge.