Events give voters chance to get to know candidates
Wednesday, 07 May 2014 12:18

Three Q&A, “meet-and-greet” events slated

by Ben Boehl

    With the June 24 primary less than seven weeks away, a slate of candidate forums will provide local voters with a chance to get to know the candidates a little better.
    There will be a general candidate forum on May 14 at the North Point Public Library, a “meet-and-greet” for Republican candidates on May 15 at the Del Capri, and a forum for the six County Council candidates on May 21 at the North Point-Edgemere Volunteer Fire Department hall.

Business groups to host Council debate
    The May 21 County Council forum, held by the Dundalk Chamber of Commerce and the Millers Island-Edgemere Business Association, runs from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and will have a basic question-and-answer forum featuring the one Republican and  five Democrats running for the council seat.   
    A  “meet-and-greet” session will also be held for half an hour before and after the forum.
    Keith Bowman of the Dundalk Chamber said all six candidates were invited and that all replied.
    “All candidates have confirmed their attendance,” Bowman said.

GOP delegate hopefuls set to “meet and greet”
    The Republican “meet-and-greet” event, organized by House of Delegates candidate Ric Metzgar, will be held at the Del Capri on Thursday, May 15 at 7 p.m.
    “I am the candidate that is taking the leadership to get everyone together,” Metzgar told The Eagle. “It is the fair thing to do. We are all in the same pond.”
    There was speculation that Metzgar and the other eight Republican delegate hopefuls would have a forum or debate similar to the one Metzgar organized in 2012 for Republican congressional candidates seeking to  challenge Democratic incumbent, U.S. Rep C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger in that year’s race.
    Metzgar was able to secure commitments from all of the major candidates in that year’s Republican primary, including state Sen. Nancy Jacobs (who went on to capture the GOP nomination before losing to Ruppersberger), Del. Rick Impallaria and former military intelligence officer Larry Smith.
    With nine Republicans running for the House of Delegates this year, however, Metzgar did not feel as if there would be enough time for a question-and-answer session.
    “I was going to do [the debate format], but there are so many candidates,” Metzgar explained. “We would only get to answer two to three questions each with that many guys.”
    According to Metzgar, Republican candidates running for governor, state Senate, House of Delegates, county executive, County Council, attorney general and comptroller have been invited to the event, and local House candidates Carl Magee, Dan Liberatore, Mitch Toland and Robin Grammer have committed to the event so far.

GDA to host local candidates

    The Greater Dundalk Alliance will host a candidate forum at the North Point Public Library on Wednesday, May 14, starting at 6 p.m.
    The forum is open to both Democrats and Republicans running for the House of Delegates and the state Senate in the 6th District and the six candidates running for County Council in the 7th District.
    It appears that the format will be similar to the council forum, with a possible question-and-answer session.
    With every Democrat and Republican running for the House of Delegates, state Senate and county council invited, there could be up to 29 candidates.
    Diane MacDougall of the GDA responded that the proper accommodations will be made for the expected large candidate field.
    “We think there will be plenty of space; [we are] more concerned with time restraints,” MacDougall explained. “[The question and answer session]  may be limited or not [held] at all, to make sure candidates have time to present themselves.”