Gov. Martin O'Malley Leading Bob Ehrlich in Maryland

Posted on October 24, 2010

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Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley has opened a 52-38 percent lead over former Gov. Bob Ehrlich, the Republican challenger, in the Maryland governor’s race, The Baltimore Sun reported today.

On the Lower Eastern Shore, early voting on Friday and Saturday was heavier than expected, according to reliable election observers in Berlin and Salisbury.  It looks as if Democratic turnout efforts may be working, because significantly more Democrats than Republicans cast ballots during the first two days of voting. That trend bears watching.

Ehrlich always faced an uphill battle to unseat O’Malley in Democratic Maryland, but the Republican got off to a fast start and was running even with O’Malley early in the year. However, Ehrlich has been fading for weeks, while O’Malley continued to come on strong. Both time and money are running out for the increasingly desperate Ehrlich effort.

With victory all-but-assured in O’Malley’s powerhouse counties on the Western Shore, the governor is free to campaign on the Eastern Shore, which was supposed to be an Ehrlich stronghold. O’Malley has scheduled a public appearance at 7 p.m. Monday night at Salisbury University. New information: Martin O’Malley’s Salisbury visit is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. at the Civic Center.

The Salisbury area has the largest population concentration on the Shore, and Salisbury has a critical mass of registered Democrats whom the O’Malley-Brown ticket would be happy to energize.

I hear that Republican Andy Harris may be running as much as 10 points ahead of incumbent Rep. Frank Kratovil, the Democratic incumbent, in the race for the District 1 Congressional seat, which represents the entire Eastern Shore and parts of three counties on the Western Shore. If Harris wins in District 1, that may be about the only bright spot for Republicans in Maryland this year.

Early voting in Maryland continues Monday through Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Each Eastern Shore county has one centrally located early-polling location. In Worcester County, early voting is at the Gull Creek Senior Center in Berlin; in Wicomico County, early voting is at the Civic Center in Salisbury; and in Somerset County, early voting is in Princess Anne.

Votes cast during early voting will not be counted until all voting ends at 8 p.m. on Election Day, which is Tuesday, Nov. 2.

— John Hayden

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