Maryland voters choosing a governor, 188 state legislators

Published 11-07-2018

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland voters were choosing a governor, a U.S. senator and eight U.S. House seats, as well as 188 state legislators on a rainy Election Day Tuesday.

Larry Hogan is seeking to become the first Republican governor re-elected in Maryland since 1954 in the state's highest-profile contest. He is being challenged by Democrat Ben Jealous, a former national NAACP president who would be Maryland's first black governor.

A number of voters in Baltimore, historically a Democratic stronghold, said they supported the candidates who practiced pragmatism and were willing to listen to differing views and then implement changes. Many were enthusiastically supporting Hogan.

"The U.S. right now is in a lot of turmoil and we need politicians who are serious about their jobs," said Venus Jackson, a 25-year-old employee of a downtown Baltimore parking garage. "If you are a reasonable Republican like Hogan and you have a good track record, then I'll support you no problem. But those Republicans are pretty rare these days."

Other Maryland voters also cited displeasure with politics in nearby Washington.

Peter Stone, an independent voter, said he voted for all Democrats, though he made an exception for Hogan and voted for him.

"I'm protest voting right now in terms of: I'm not voting for any Republican who has anything nice to say about the president," Stone said after voting in Annapolis, Maryland, noting that Hogan has taken stands against the president.

A majority of voters casting midterm election ballots in Maryland said the country is headed in the wrong direction, according to a wide-ranging survey of the American electorate. As voters cast ballots for governor, U.S. Senate and members of Congress on Tuesday, AP VoteCast found that about a third of Maryland voters said the country is on the right track, compared with 7 in 10 who said the country is headed in the wrong direction.

For a third of Maryland voters, President Donald Trump was not a factor they considered while casting their vote. By comparison, more than 6 in 10 said Trump was a reason for their vote.

Marion O'Connor, of Oxon Hill, said she voted for Jealous for new ideas and his proposal for Medicare for all.

"I do believe everyone should be covered under some type of a plan

"I'm protest voting right now in terms of: I'm not voting for any Republican who has anything nice to say about the president," Stone said after voting in Annapolis, Maryland, noting that Hogan has taken stands against the president.

A majority of voters casting midterm election ballots in Maryland said the country is headed in the wrong direction, according to a wide-ranging survey of the American electorate. As voters cast ballots for governor, U.S. Senate and members of Congress on Tuesday, AP VoteCast found that about a third of Maryland voters said the country is on the right track, compared with 7 in 10 who said the country is headed in the wrong direction.

For a third of Maryland voters, President Donald Trump was not a factor they considered while casting their vote. By comparison, more than 6 in 10 said Trump was a reason for their vote.

Marion O'Connor, of Oxon Hill, said she voted for Jealous for new ideas and his proposal for Medicare for all.

"I do believe everyone should be covered under some type of a plan, and it should be affordable," she said after voting early last week in Fort Washington. "It shouldn't have to break the bank for children or seniors or even the working to have health care."

At the statehouse, the focus is on whether Republicans can win five seats to break a supermajority held by Democrats. That would have a considerable impact on state government in Maryland, if Hogan wins, because Democrats would not be able to override his vetoes. Democrats now hold a 33-14 advantage in the Senate, and they need 29, or a three-fifths vote, to override a veto. The Maryland House of Delegates has 91 Democrats and 50 Republicans. They need 85 votes for a supermajority in that chamber.

U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin, a Democrat, is seeking his third term. He is being challenged by Republican Tony Campbell and Neal Simon, an unaffiliated candidate.

Maryland's 6th Congressional Dist

For a third of Maryland voters, President Donald Trump was not a factor they considered while casting their vote. By comparison, more than 6 in 10 said Trump was a reason for their vote.

Marion O'Connor, of Oxon Hill, said she voted for Jealous for new ideas and his proposal for Medicare for all.

"I do believe everyone should be covered under some type of a plan, and it should be affordable," she said after voting early last week in Fort Washington. "It shouldn't have to break the bank for children or seniors or even the working to have health care."

At the statehouse, the focus is on whether Republicans can win five seats to break a supermajority held by Democrats. That would have a considerable impact on state government in Maryland, if Hogan wins, because Democrats would not be able to override his vetoes. Democrats now hold a 33-14 advantage in the Senate, and they need 29, or a three-fifths vote, to override a veto. The Maryland House of Delegates has 91 Democrats and 50 Republicans. They need 85 votes for a supermajority in that chamber.

U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin, a Democrat, is seeking his third term. He is being challenged by Republican Tony Campbell and Neal Simon, an unaffiliated candidate.

Maryland's 6th Congressional District race is for the only open seat in Maryland's eight-member U.S. House delegation. David Trone, a Democrat and co-owner of a national wine store chain, is running against Amie Hoeber, a Republican and national security consultant. The district stretches from the suburbs of the nation's capital to the borders of West Virginia, Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Maryland Rep. Andy Harris, the state's lone Republican congressman, is being challenged by Democrat Jesse Colvin in the district that includes Maryland's Eastern Shore.

Voters also will be deciding two constitutional amendments. One would require casino revenue set aside for schools to be used to enhance education spending above state funding formulas. The other would allow residents to register to vote at their polling places on Election Day.

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Associated Press writer David McFadden in Baltimore contributed to this report.

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For AP's complete coverage of the U.S. midterm elections: http://apne.ws/APPolitics

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