Changes in political geography are usually the result of slow, steady evolution, but occasionally it is interrupted by a tectonic shift.

Local politicians are reading the returns from the 2020 presidential election to try to understand which is happening right now in Frederick County.

“Everybody” knows that Frederick has been a conservative, Republican county forever – except “everybody” is wrong. “Everybody” also knows that Montgomery County has been a liberal Democratic bastion forever — but once again “everybody” is wrong.

In recent years, both statements have been true. But both counties have evolved and changed over the decades. From 1970 until 1992, Frederick County was the heart of the 6th Congressional District, represented by Goodloe Byron and then by his widow, Beverly Byron. Both were Democrats. After Beverly Byron lost the Democratic primary to a more liberal candidate, conservative Republican Roscoe Bartlett was elected 10 times before he was redistricted out of office.

For much of that time, from 1984 until 2002, liberal Montgomery sent Republican Connie Morella to Congress in the 8th District.

Change happens, and now it may be happening again.

President Joe Biden became the first Democrat to win the presidential vote in Frederick County since Lyndon B. Johnson’s landslide in 1964. An analysis of 2020 voting data by News-Post reporters Ryan Marshall and Steve Bohnel showed that Biden flipped more than two dozen precincts that Republican Donald Trump had won in 2016.

While the Republican Trump won the county by exactly 3,000 votes in 2016 over Democrat Hillary Clinton, Biden captured 13,993 more votes than Trump in 2020. Voter registration grew substantially, and turnout here and around the country soared.

In 2016, the county had 65,905 registered Republicans and 60,747 registered Democrats, said Deborah Carter, chairwoman of the Frederick County Democratic Central Committee. By 2020, there were 72,487 Democrats and 68,757 Republicans.

Many more Republicans came out to vote for Trump — and many more Democrats came out to vote against him. He was the great motivator for both parties.

The question now is whether it was a one-time event. Frederick County has been trending toward the Democrats for the last decade. Was this the year it turned blue?

From 2010-14, the five members of the old Board of County Commissioners were all Republicans. After county voters approved a new charter form of government with an executive and seven council members, Democrat Jan Gardner defeated former commission president Blaine Young in 2014. However, four Republicans were elected to the seven-member County Council.

In 2018, Gardner was re-elected, and four Democrats took seats on the council. Two Republicans were elected to countywide office, Sheriff Chuck Jenkins and State’s Attorney Charlie Smith.

The county’s delegation in Annapolis is split 4-4, but at the beginning of the decade the GOP held six seats.

The change may have come about in large measure because of the influx of new residents into the county, many of whom moved north from Montgomery County and brought their Democratic leanings with them.

Ironically, the pro-growth board of commissioners from the beginning of the decade sped up construction of new housing particularly in the southern portions of the county and many of those new residents vote Democratic. Did the GOP plant the seeds of its own diminishment?

Gardner, who cannot run for re-election in 2022 because of term limits, told our reporters that if local Democrats can encourage younger voters to turn out for their candidates, the county will continue turning blue.

“I think that it is a reflection of the politics of the day. I think it’s a reflection of where young people are going. I think it’s a reflection of where more diverse communities are going, and I think it’s just going to continue to be the trend in Frederick County,” Gardner said.

The 2022 election will provide the clearest indication of the future direction of the county politically. A new executive will be chosen as well as all seven members of the council and the eight members of the legislative delegation. In addition, the state will be electing a new governor.

Will the Trump effect continue even after he is not on the ballot? We will know more in about 22 months.

(23) comments

olefool

Enough jsk, we've had more than a fair share of radical right bloviations from you, more than we need or want. trump is a loser, McConnell is a loser, McCarthy is a loser, the GOP is a loser and the Trumpism ticket is a loser... Open your mind.

“To argue with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason, and whose philosophy consists in holding humanity in contempt, is like administering medicine to the dead, or endeavoring to convert an atheist by scripture.”

― Thomas Paine, The American Crisis

public-redux

Don’t admonish him for commenting. It is his privilege and all viewpoints should be welcomed here. Besides, the Great Frederick Fair was canceled last year and we did not have the opportunity to see the bearded lady and the two-headed goat.

phydeaux994

👍

bosco

So, olefool, are you now the moderator on who is allowed to post and what they are allowed to say? You fit right in with the cancel culture. Congratulations - until they come for you and then you'll be squealing like a pig stuck under a gate about YOUR free speech rights.

Dwasserba

"Will the Trump effect continue even after he is not on the ballot?" Well-connected Liz Cheney is in a fight for her political life in a state where people are clinging to untruths and vociferously claiming not to be Republicans but "party of Trump." Everywhere may not be so boorish about it, but it is a thing.

jsklinelga

The changing political landscape? Jan Gardner claims diversity and the trend is where younger people are headed.

Does anybody really believe President Trump was the real force behind our nation's Capitol being attacked on January 6? That was, without doubt. the most pronounced change in our political landscape in 2020..

Very few would celebrate that event nor condone those actions unless fueled by the extreme. Unfortunately the extreme is not waning but the deep divisions in our country are being exacerbated and inflamed by over zealous political actions, such as impeachment, court packing commissions, unprecedented executive actions. etc.

But the column focuses on the local landscape. Is it surprising? The largest industry in this area, especially with the influx of new commuting suburbanites, is government. Take for example the 75,000 member Maryland Teacher's Union that is the largest political (Democrat) lobbying machine in the State. A machine that is funded by the largest, by far, tax burden on our local citizenry.

From the local zeal to the bizarre actions of folks like Nancy Pelosi you would think the results of the last election was a major landslide rather then an election riddles with inconsistencies and irregularities that was decided by small margin within a few states.

jsklinelga

Before the small group of liberal zealots that dominate this comment section excoriate my comments they should be cautious. As should the over exuberant and zealous that think this past election marks a new trend. Just after writing the comment I read the excerpts of a Politico (left leaning) story. It surmised, outside of Washington and the mainstream you would be wise to not condemn President Trump. "Politico reporter: Trump base is 'getting stronger' since he left office, impeachment would only empower him." What we need in this country is compromise and real unity. What the progressives are trying to force on this country will only lead to more division and more hatred/

Greg F

It’s being fueled, JS, by disinformation campaigns for profit of media company directed at those who don’t ever realize they are being strung along., combined with fear of being no longer the white majority blue collar power they once were and will never be again. We are seeing a necessity to change away from oil that will change things the way car making out wagon makers out of jobs. That was a tectonic shift.

Dwasserba

His point that we exist in a bubble here, is well taken, and much of the world outside us votes too. Your point about blue collar America is apt. Trump will continue to be their hero unless/until they have another better source of real hope as in, bring back jobs in infrastructure for adults lacking college degrees.

Greg F

This is not about liberal zealots as much as you want it to be that, JS....it is about a long-term mantra from the same folks who still want the south to rise, blacks to be out in the fields as slaves and not invited in to restaurants or to sit in buses in front and vote. This was not the first insurrection and by far not the last we heard from those who still think the south won or got rooked over. It's the perpetuation and reinvigoration from Trumnpians like you, CD, piddle, Bonzo et al, that want to subert democracy itself because they just don't like it as they don't thing everyone was created equal or should have fair opportunities. They mask it by having NRA say this is all about 2A when they don't really care about anything but profits for their paycheck from gun makers and who stirs the pot of racism to instill fear in them they are losing their whiteness and majority status (too late). Read this...it says a lot of who the rabble rousers were and still are from historical perspectives. I know you won't read it..you never do, especially if it's from what you perceive as a libby site. https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/01/30/what-ulysses-grant-can-teach-joe-biden-about-putting-down-violent-insurrections-463976?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Awteam2021

JSK, the changing in political geographical and diversity. It ain’t reversible.

There are far more coming that don’t share your opinions then you can humanly multiply.

You say “ the real force behind our nation’s Capitol being attacked on January 6? That was, without doubt. the most pronounced change in our political landscape in 2020..” First - it was Jan 6, 2021, not 2020.

Second - sorry, according to Trump - the loss was a landslide. The presidential electorate gave Biden a solid majority of 306 electoral votes to Trump’s 232, the same margin that Trump bragged was a landslide when he won the White House four years ago. Trump also lost his first election by 3 million popular votes, now this time by 7 million votes. Even if he won In Georgia and Arizona, he wouldn’t have lost the election. Right?

Everything else you say is ‘gobbledygook’.

Maryland Teachers Union? Trump Lost Maryland by 1 million votes. There are less then 125,000 teachers in Maryland and less then 75,000 in the Union. And you think they somehow turned the election in favor of Biden? Would that be justification to bringing back teachers to classrooms before being vaccinated, so they learn about demigods, like Trump?

Sound more like you are out of touch.

jsklinelga

awteam2000

Snowy Sunday morning so I will respond.

You seemed to miss the point of my message. Overzealous political actions that only heighten the divide in this country. Such as Impeachment, unprecedented executive orders, court packing commission plus radical energy policies that will have a huge detrimental effect on the lower middle class and poor. .These actions only further inflame the divide and ignore the split in this country.

Interesting that the objection to my statement that Trump was not the real force behind the Capitol attack was that I mistakenly said 2020. The real force behind the attack was an extreme reaction to radical politics. A lesson we seemed not to have learned which has led to a resurgence of Trump's popularity that the Politico reporter addressed.

As far as the Teacher's union I think you totally missed my point surmising that I thought the teacher's were the deciding factor in the election. Unless you were totally oblivious to the national news last year you would have known that government unions, teacher's union in particular, were a major point of contention.

Is it surprising that Maryland is 65% democrat. As I said our main industry is government and related businesses.

I left the Democrat party because of it's sheer hypocrisy. False claims like equal Medical coverage for all. Do you think the government union workers are going to give up their Cadillac policies for the sake of the whole? We have seen the answer to that in real time, in real life .Do you know how much money is spent to subsidize each one of those policies every month?.

Or grave concern for climate change? This past year we saw a huge reduction in harmful atmospheric gases because commuting came to a near standstill. Yet the strongest advocates of climate change are the growing numbers of commuters trying to escape living in Democrat controlled urban areas. Meanwhile the new radical energy initiatives will produce a huge burden for the lower classes that the Democrats profess to represent. Many will not be able to heat their homes or drive their cars due to the high energy cost/

Obviously the greatest example of the hypocrisy is the blatantly false claim for seeking unity

phydeaux994

Why is it jsk, that we only hear the words “unity” and “bipartisan” from the Republicans when the Democrats are in charge? We didn’t hear those words from Mitch and John for the 8 years of the Obama Administration or from Mitch for the first 2 years of the Trump Administration. We heard them from the Republicans in reference to the House of Representatives during ‘19 and ‘20 but not in reference to the Senate. And I have heard the words “bipartisan” and “unity” more in the last 11 days from the Republicans than I have heard it from them in the last 12 years, actually, more times on Chris Wallace’s Show in the past hour than in the last 12 years. It is hilarious. Hypocrisy is not a strong enough word for Republicans, pure ignorance and falsehoods is closer but.........??? BTW, jsk, no response for poor little ol’ me or am I just a waste of your precious time and intellect??

Piedmontgardener

The singularly characteristic that Trump supporters have is a method to turn any situation into a victimization statement. This is particularly rich coming from older white males who have lived their entire lives in the US from a perspective of being in the majority. When that perch appears to be crumbling, they've turned to conspiracy theory and outright support of lawlessness to maintain their position. Toss in a 24/7 stream of conservative media offering reinforcing content and the day is over before it starts. No introspection at all. Just fear.

artandarchitecture

I just subscribed to FNP. I'm a 24-7 political junkie. I live in Northern Frederick Co. I was born in MD & have lived in MD for 50 years now. I can't wait to move out of this Super-Majority Democrat state, but my husband doesn't retire for 5 more years. Then, I'm hoping I can convince our 3 white sons to leave too. Their future is very grim in Maryland which seems to be bending over backwards to be as pro-diverse (aka anti-white) as possible.

I disagree that "The real force behind the attack was an extreme reaction to radical politics." I believe there is much anger & fury over election results that have been proven mathematically & statistically impossible. The kiss of death, though, was not being allowed to show the evidence to the SCOTUS. Trumps 3 SC picks ALL decided they wouldn't render a decision on the evidence (hear the case) because they lack the backbone to make tough decisions that would cause them to lose their popularity with millions of people (no matter which way they decided). Cheating was rampant. Our votes mean NOTHING. We have no political representation, or accountability, & there is no political solution. And socialism-communism is rolling into the U.S.!

Greg F

This is a lot more of what is going on here: https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/01/30/what-ulysses-grant-can-teach-joe-biden-about-putting-down-violent-insurrections-463976?utm_source=pocket-newtab

phydeaux994

I have been telling you jsk that the major cause of the Division in our Country is RACISM. If the Protests for Racial Equality after the ‘last straw’ murder of George Floyd this past Summer and the FBI proclaimed Right Wing Racist Groups rioting in Charlottesville and agitations in Cities across the Country all Summer and the GRANDE FINALE planned, coordinated Domestic Terrorism January 6, 2021 by these same Groups on our National Capitol and Congress to overturn the 2020 Presidential Election haven’t convinced you of that, then WHAT IS THE CAUSE jsk? What are these “many other causes” you keep talking about jsk?? You keep forgetting jsk, that Donald John Trump NEVER had the support of the MAJORITY of Americans and left Office with one of the LOWEST approval ratings in the history of the Country. He was/is the RRR(RadicalRightRepublicans) “Great White Hope”, Jim Jones, Charles Manson, David Koresh, Warren Jeffs, Marshall Applewhite Cult Leader who will never forsake him and would like to kill those that do. 46.8% of American voters and their families and friends want America to remain a Majority WHITE Country ruled by WHITE people. It’s not complicated jsk, it’s the simple FACT. Opposing fact based opinions encouraged. Especially from jsk, DM (not CD), bosco, piddle, BTT(BullyTagTeam) members.

phydeaux994

You may not agree jsk, but I would say that the definition below fits you better than it fits me or any other Liberals that participate on the FNPOF. Peace. ✌️😷

zeal·ot

/ˈzelət/

noun

1. a person who is fanatical and uncompromising in pursuit of their religious, political, or other ideals.

ed82059

No It fits you

Greg F

Spot on, Phy. Compromise is not in the RRR dictionary, along with a lot of other words like "gracious loser."

artandarchitecture

The division, believe it or not, is not actually racism, it's wealth "inequality." This is why the gamestop move was SO great. Everybody on the right + everybody on the left could agree--it's time to challenge 'the establishment.' And like clockwork, the very wealthiest changed the rules when the 'little-guys' started winning. TPTB just picked up the phone & asked their social media owning friends in power to put pressure on Robinhood to not allow any more stock purchases through their platform. The corporations + big tech have more power/influence than the U.S. govt. For God's sake, they silenced the POTUS on twitter & 4 banks killed accts with multi-millionaire Trump?! The middle & lower classes will be squished like bugs!

Greg F

Trump was not about the little guy Art. Never. He was about him, profit for him, profit for his family, and self-aggrandizing, all while not caring who he hurt in the process. He grew up in a racist family and took that to heart. He is soulless and petty and vengeful and only seeks attention at whatever cost there is to him and those around him, and truth has no meaning whatsoever. To practice that, he spewed over 30,000 lies during his term that are well documented by many press and scholarly institutes. He fed a daily diet of misinformation and disinformation and directives to media to pass on to his followers, knowing it would profit that media, who had zero ethics and no direction not to do that since the GOP curbed the Fairness Doctrine long ago. Even now those media outlets are doubling down in a desperate campaign of more lies and misinformation to keep their viewership now that Der Leader is gone. He got them directly incited for insurrection, along with the media, who should face punishment as well.

Greg F

That wealth inequality spurs on people who know that much. RRR doesn't know that much, but they feel it, along with the pang of being no longer the majority white rulers they once were. Rome fell too. I'm sure a lot of them went down believing Nero fiddled a good song and held on for generations thinking they were winners. Trump is today's Nero, fiddling away with the "we won" song and "landslide victory" encore as his party burns to the ground. Like Rome and Nero, there are the hangers-on that will just grow old and die without ever realizing Nero actually died and Rome burned, and will deny anything was wrong, ever, with Nero. The Gamestoppers are more than likely either liberals that hate "the man" just like hippies did in the 60s, except they have a better tool than weed and acid to help with that, and Liberatarians who just hate anything big-anything. Republicans gave birth to the "Corporate People" who now out-gun real people in terms of financial equality. That sh** has to be repealed at any cost. In the meantime, this is the only way to screw corporate people, and simultaneously the republicans that gave breath to them.

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