With 100.1 percent of the ballots counted, it appears that Andy Harris got the vote of every right-thinking man and woman on the Eastern Shore and at least two and probably more from a Windy Rosin.
At least I think that’s what she said her name was — the short, blond woman who stood ahead of me in the long line at the Ramsey GMC Real Good Deals, Easy Financing Voting Precinct yesterday. She appeared very knowledgeable about the process, and helpful. “Vote early,” she advised me, “and vote all day long. That’s my motto.”
I wondered, does that really work?
“For a while,” Windy admitted. “But you’ve got to move around. Then you can’t show your face here ever again.”
I couldn’t help asking, why would anybody want to do that — give up home, friends, reputation and thereby ensure that Andy Harris got reelected?
“For personal reasons,” is how Windy explained it.
I got that. They can be compelling. And I had some other questions for her, about something that had been troubling me for a while, and, really, she was the most experienced voter I’d ever come across.
Was the GOP, I asked, running the LaFerla write-in campaign? I mean, I’d occasionally seen signs in Chestertown, printed in very pale blue and discreet hints of lime, quite tastefully small, reading: “Write In LaFerla.” And, even if a majority of extremely sharp-eyed voters noticed and did exactly that, wouldn’t LaFerla still be likely to lose?
Because most people have at least two names, and ballots almost universally print both of them, and election judges can be notoriously picky, and in some places they’d been known to reject a ballot with just one name on it. And you couldn’t blame them, because what if there were more than, say, one LaFerla in the First District. And if a LaFerla actually got the most votes, would they give the job to John, Susan, or maybe Kathleen, to name a few? And how could an unsophisticated voter be expected to write in both correct names if the LaFerla campaign didn’t tell what they were?
So, I wanted to know from the wily veteran, was somebody just being naïve, or was this all a sneaky scheme by the GOP to make sure the actual candidate, John LaFerla, had no chance of winning?
Windy shook her head and smiled pityingly. No, she explained, it didn’t take a conspiracy to sink the hopes of Democrats in the First District, where most folks have their heads screwed on rightward. “I could practically do that,” she boasted, “all by myself.”