Howard County Maryland Blog

Local Politics and Current Events

A vote for Wallis is a vote for Ulman?

Posted by David Keelan on Tuesday, June 27, 2006

A reader posted the following which I will post here because I think their is some validity to this readers “concerns”.  I certainly think that Wallis would hurt Merdon and help Ulman.  I honestly think an independent without County government experience has an uphill battle. 

I won’t go as far as to claim that their is a Wallis/Ulman deal as the reader speculates, but it raises a very important point?

Will a Wallis campaign put Ulman in the County Executive seat?  Merdon has traditionally done very well in District One among independent voters.  It is a democratic district and he won by large margins twice because he was able to garnish support from democrats and a large proportion of independent voters. 

Ulman won in a very predominant democratic district – altough he still had to run an ugly campaign to beat Joan Lancos (R).

So will Wallis siphon off enough independent votes to help Ulman or do voters know better?  What do you think?  Do you think we would see Steve Wallis in an Ulman administration if Ulman won?

Here is the post:

I wish I were not so cynical, but my gut tells me that Wallis entered the race with Ken Ulman’s encouragement and that the goal is to split the independent vote away from Chris Merdon so that Ken Ulman can eek-out a win the on election with a plurality.

Here’s a prediction. If Ulman “wins”, Wallis will just happen to be appointed to the plumbest of plumb positions (superintendent or chief admin officer will be his consolation gift).

It takes a cynic – me – to identify such a cynical plan, but search your feelings and you know it’s probably true.

Or should I believe that Wallis really thinks he can win? I don’t. He simply seems too smart for that. I bet he and Ulman have an informal deal that only those two are aware of. It’s a win-win for them: pretty smart, shrewd and ruthless political manuevering.

Of course I’ll never know for sure and have to simply continue to speculate. They may conspire to take the executive’s race, but they can never take my tinfoil hat away from me.

Update:  An informed reader offered me this opinion.

I would think he (Wallis) would hurt Ken Ulman in his base area of Harper’s Choice which is in Ulman’s district.  Wallis’ supporters are largely made up of parents at the school over the years that live in District 4 and they will vote for him, not Ken Ulman.  Additionally, Wallis won’t have any money to reach out beyond his circle as it is now defined – so I don’t think he’ll make much headway in the rest of the county.  Independents are independents because they vote for THE PERSON, not the party.  They will not blindly vote for someone just because they are labeled an “independent”. 

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