Election day results reinforce Maryland's political status quo

COLUMBIA, Md. (Nov. 4, 2020)—Deep-blue Maryland provided few surprises on Election Day.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden won the state with more than 63% of the vote.

All of Maryland's congressional representatives, seven out of eight of whom are Democrats-easily won re-election.

Baltimore City overwhelmingly elected a new Democratic mayor, 36-year-old Brandon Scott.

And the state's two ballot initiatives-one that legalizes sports betting-and another that allows the General Assembly to add items to the state budget-both passed by comfortable margins.

"It's pretty apropos for Maryland politics. [City Council President-elect] Nick Mosby won a new seat in the city. Brandon Scott was elected mayor of the city. And once again not a single Republican won in Baltimore City," Del. Brian Chisholm (R-Anne Arundel) told MarylandReporter.com on Wednesday.

Chisholm added: "I think [GOP congressional candidate] Kim Klacik did a little better than I thought. I think she's an outstanding candidate. But she faced huge odds there. She did get a huge amount of money that came in both l0cally and nationally. At least she showed that you can fight above your weight in Baltimore City. But in the end, its Baltimore City politics and it's still going to be run by the same people and the same party."

Chisholm said he does not expect the state's political dynamics to change anytime soon.

"One of the things you hear often in Maryland is: 'I can't wait to retire and move out of Maryland,' which usually indicates the business owners and the upper-middle-class….They tend to leave. And they tend to leave and go to other states like North Carolina and South Carolina and Florida where they are taxed less."

However, Sen. Cory McCray (D-Baltimore City) insisted that continuity of party does not equate continuity of leadership. McCray said Scott's ascension to mayor represents a "generational shift" in Baltimore City's political leadership and that alone constitutes significant change.

"You now have the youngest mayor ever elected to the city of Baltimore."

McCray added: "I think that Brandon is who our moms see as their sons, who our grandads and grandmoms see as their grandsons…Every young man that's told to do the right thing, go to school, get a job-or fight against a broken system-Brandon Scott inspires them."

Sen. Will Smith (D-Montgomery) said Tuesday's election results were mostly predictable.

"Nothing initially shocked me or surprised me. I was happy to see that some of the referendum issues passed to include the budget item. I was happy to see that."

Smith also said he was not surprised to learn that Biden appears to have won once staunchly conservative Frederick County.

"I know a lot of folks that have moved north from Montgomery County to Frederick County over the last couple of years. So, Frederick still remains the fastest growing city in Maryland. And it's been trending bluer for the last decade. So that didn't surprise me."

An estimated 2.8 million Marylanders voted on Tuesday, according to the Washington Post. As of Wednesday morning, about 1 million ballots have yet to be counted, according to the Post.

More than 983,000 Maryland voters cast ballots during the early voting period. That number is slightly higher than the estimated 875,000 Marylanders who participated in early voting in 2016.

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