I am a resident of Wicomico County and a part time Talbot resident. For the last eight years I have supported Delegate Johnny Mautz both as a candidate and as a member of the General Assembly.
In his current bid for the Maryland Senate (District 37) Johnny has given up his seat in the House and is now involved in the Republican primary election against the incumbent and his colleague, Senator Addie Eckardt. This was not an easy decision for him or one that he took lightly.
Out of their regard for both Delegate Mautz and Senator Eckardt many prominent Republicans including Congressman Andy Harris and Delegate Chris Adams have refrained from endorsing either candidate over the other. Their respectful position, however, has been compromised in Senator Eckardt’s recent mailing to potential primary voters, which features a dated picture of Senator Eckardt flanked by Congressman Harris and Delegate Adams displaying “Eckardt for Senate” shirts. The obvious implication being that both Harris and Adams are now endorsing her over Delegate Mautz in the July 19th primary election.
The slogan “Integrity Matters” has been bandied about in this campaign but in the real world facts matter. However, the facts of this matter reflect that the Harris/Adams picture is from an earlier election and is in no way connected with this current campaign. Also, true to their earlier commitment, Congressman Harris and Delegate Adams continue to withhold endorsing either Delegate Mautz or Senator Eckardt despite what appears in the Senator’s mailer.
The use of random pictures of other elected officials to misrepresent or imply endorsements is a classic political trick. This form of Annapolis style campaigning has mercifully not infected the Shore where issues and a candidate’s track record prevail over sleight of hand politics. Yes, integrity does matter and to the voters of the Shore it is much more than a hollow slogan.
Russell C. Dashiell, Jr.