Commentary: Not Hogan’s place to tell Republicans how to vote
As the titular head of the Republican Party, it is not Governor Larry Hogan’s place to tell its members how to vote in a primary election. Hogan would have us in District 29 to vote for his choice of a state senator, Jack Bailey, to serve his statewide interests in the General Assembly. He wants a minion who will unquestionably support his agenda.
Has Jack Bailey promised to rubber stamp their funding requests?
However, this narrow view ignores the role of a state senator at the local level, which serves as a check and balance on the board of county commissioners. For example, the St. Mary’s County board attempted to expand its powers through the adoption of code home rule, which Sen. Steve Waugh opposed. Is there a behind-the-scenes deal that, if Jack Bailey is elected, he will not oppose code home rule? Has Bailey also agreed to support the unionizing of the sheriff’s department, which Waugh opposed? Waugh questioned the board’s legislative proposals, especially its borrowing, spending, and debt. Has Jack Bailey promised to rubber stamp their funding requests? Those opposing Waugh have made none of these issues public.
The publicized opposition to Waugh is that he allegedly lacks in party loyalty. He is accused of being too chummy with Senate President Mike Miller, a Democrat. However, at April 10, 2018, bill signing ceremony, sitting next to Miller, Hogan said, “The success of our legislative session shows that, unlike the partisan gridlock we see in Washington, here in Annapolis, we work together in a common sense, bipartisan way to get things done.”
Considering there are only 14 Republicans out of 47 members in the Senate, what could Waugh achieve if he was not bipartisan out of necessity and when appropriate?
For years, St. Mary’s County was in the grip of Democratic good-old-boys style politics. The opposition to Steve Waugh appears to be a Republican version of the same. Republicans should not allow the governor and the board of county commissioners to place their political interests above public interests. Send them a message. Vote for Sen. Steve Waugh. He has earned your support.