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Updated Cecil County Primary Vote Tally: Outcomes Unchanged

April 16, 2012
By Nancy Schwerzler

State election officials have now counted absentee, provisional and overseas ballots to come up with the full results of the April 3 Democratic and Republican primaries for Cecil County candidates.

The post-election count of votes did not alter the outcome in any of the contests from the early voting and Election Day results.

Overall, the top vote-getter in a contested party primary for a county office was County Commissioner Robert Hodge, with 3,921 votes for the District 5 County Council seat in the Republican primary. Dr. Alan McCarthy was next in line, with 3,824 GOP votes for the District 1 County Council seat. Commissioner Tari Moore, running in a crowded Republican primary for County Executive, pulled in 3,115 votes.

County Executive:

In the three-way Democratic primary, Pam Howard, the former County Treasurer, won big, with 2,196 votes, or 55 percent. Finishing second was North East Mayor Robert McKnight, with 1,483 votes, or 37.1 percent. In distant third place was political newcomer Winston Robinson, with 313 votes, or 7.8 percent.

In the crowded seven-candidate Republican primary, Tari Moore led the pack, with 3,115 votes, or 46.3 percent. Commissioner Diana Broomell placed a distant second, with 973 votes, or 14.5 percent of the vote.

It was a close horserace for third place, with Michael A. Dawson, a Perryville town commissioner and anointed candidate of the Smipkin political organization, tallying 839 votes, or 12.5 percent. Former County Commissioner Harry Hepbron was just 14 votes behind, with 825 votes or 12.3 percent.

At the bottom of the pile were Richard Boyle, with 604 votes or 9 percent; Paul Trapani, with 193 votes, or 2.9 percent, and Pete Pritchard, with 181 votes, or 2.7 percent.

Despite Moore’s impressive win in the crowded field, adding up the votes of her opponents yields a 3,615 vote opinion against her candidacy, or a 500 vote majority over the votes she did receive.

Moore and Howard will face-off in the November general election.

County Council, District 1:

Veterinarian and businessman Alan McCarthy, of Chesapeake City, ousted incumbent County Commissioner James Mullin in the Republican primary. McCarthy racked up 3,824 votes, or 62.1 percent, while Mullin received 2,330 votes, or 37.9 percent.

McCarthy will face Democrat Pamela H. Bailey in the November general election, after Bailey overwhelmed Garrett Billmire in the Democratic primary. Bailey received 2,259 votes, or 65.7 percent, while Billmire scored 1,177 votes, or 34.3 percent.

County Council, District 5:

Incumbent County Commissioner Hodge pummeled political newcomer Keith Moore, who was an unaffiliated voter until a half-hour before the candidate filing deadline when he suddenly became a Republican and filed to challenge Hodge. The final tally in the GOP primary was Hodge, 3,921 or 62.5 percent, while Moore received 2,355 votes, or 37.5 percent.

Democrat James Crouse, the former mayor of Elkton, was unopposed in his party primary and racked up 2,946 votes, or 100 percent of ballots cast. He will face Hodge in the November general election.

State Circuit Court for Cecil County:

Sitting Judges Keith Baynes and Jane Cairns Murray will appear on the November ballot but it is really just a formality, after their overwhelming victories in both the Democratic and Republican primaries. Judges run on a non-partisan basis in both party primaries and since Baynes and Murray were the top vote-getters, the third man out—Del. Michael Smigiel (R-36)– falls by the wayside, and the incumbent judges will be returning to the bench to continue to hold their seats.

Baynes, who is a Republican, came in first in his party’s primary, with 4,412 votes or 39.2 percent; while Murray, who is a Democrat, came in second with 4,381 votes, or 38.9 percent. Smigiel was a distant third in his own party’s primary, with 2,458 votes, or 21.8 percent.

In the Democratic primary, Murray came in first, with 3,329 votes, or 46.1 percent, while Baynes came in second, with 3,202 votes, or 44.3 percent. Smigiel mustered a paltry 698 votes, or 9.7 percent.

[NOTE: Cecil Times used the official tally on the website of the State Board of Elections in Annapolis, which rounded vote percentages to one decimal point. The local elections board calculated percentages to two decimal points, without rounding. For historical purposes, the one decimal point calculation is used by the state board.)

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One Response to Updated Cecil County Primary Vote Tally: Outcomes Unchanged

  1. Mike Lara on April 23, 2012 at 11:19 pm

    Thanks for the update. Re: Tari Moore’s vote count, your math is OK but I have to take issue with your thought process. A vote for any of the candidates can only be identified as just that – a vote FOR that specific candidate in this specific contest. It’s quite a stretch to equate that to a vote AGAINST any ONE candidate. Tari Moore could have been the second choice for all 3,615 votes she didn’t get. Your conclusion seems to suggest that she was the last choice for all 3,615, and that she would have lost by that 500 vote margin in a two person race. Highly unlikely.

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