Friday, February 22, 2013

Laura Who?

A few observations coming out of last night’s surprise appointment of Laura Neuman as Anne Arundel County Executive.

  • Sources in Anne Arundel County have been telling me that the Democratic members of the County Council were likely to be the driving factor in engineering the pick, and last night’s event proved it. Indeed, the math always favored such an outcome, assuming the three Democrats voted as a bloc and peeled off one of the GOP councilman eying the seat for himself in 2014. It looks like Councilman Jerry Walker forged an alliance with the Democrats.

  • Remember that the county charter specified that the new county executive had to come from the same party as the incumbent whose resignation caused the vacancy. The fact that Democrats were able to identify a compelling if little known candidate from within the Republicans’ own backyard speaks to the level of division and dysfunction existing in the Anne Arundel County GOP. While Republicans were plumbing the past for candidates or looking to help those wanting to run in the future, the Democrats stayed focused on the here and now, 

  • The big winner of the night: Howard County Executive Ken Ulman, who now has a political ally at the helm of a neighboring county in advance of a possible gubernatorial run. True, Neuman is a Republican, but assuming her two year tenure as county executive is a success, and she is able to build a reputation as a reformer in the wake of the John Leopold mess, she could make a compelling running mate for Ulman if she switches parties.

  • The big loser of the night: former First Lady Kendel Ehrlich. Toothy and supremely self confident, Mrs. Ehrlich failed to receive a single vote from council members – including Councilman Derek Fink, who once served as her State House press flack. One wonders if last night’s outcome will convince the Ehrlichs – who have been on a chronic campaign to reclaim lost relevance since 2007 – to finally hang it up as far as politics is concerned. Perhaps Mrs. Ehrlich will write a book just like her husband did. Three possible titles: “We Miss The Chefs,” “Targeting Britney,” or my personal favorite, “Tow This Car Away.”



  2. You and the Ehrlichs have the broken record syndrome.

  3. Anon @ 2/24/13 @ 14:59:

    Thanks for your comment. If you look at my blog in its totality, you'll see I cover a lot of non-Ehrlich related topics.

    I don't think accusing me of having "broken record syndrome" in the case of the Ehrlichs is fair. I think that would be a fair description if I were writing about the same event over and over. There is a difference between reporting the same car crash incident multiple times versus reporting each separate instance of multiple car crashes involving the same drivers. If the Ehrlichs didn't keep putting themselves out there and making laughably foolish decisions (e. g. launching a pay to play TV show, Kendel running for an office for which she was clearly unqualified), snarky bloggers like me and Joe Steffen wouldn't have anything to say about them. As it stands, they continue to be a rich source of material because they keep making one misstep after another.

    Best, RJC

    1. That's easy for YOU to say. You're not the one who's run out of space to store all big EHRLICH signs and all the unsold copies of that book.