I have been seeing a number of signs throughout the First Congressional District that read, “I’m With Andy.” What does this mean? I know that Congressman Andy “Handgun” Harris is a staunch supporter of Donald Trump and his big lie. Harris voted against certifying the results of the 2020 election. The doctor-turned-politician also has gained notoriety for attending a December 19, 2020, meeting at the White House at which, I assume, Harris offered advice on how to persuade Vice President Pence to reject the electoral college vote count and allow Trump to remain in office. And, of course, I still wonder what Harris was doing when he was caught trying to carry a gun onto the floor of the House of Representatives.
Does “I’m With Andy” mean that I endorse these actions? If it does, my follow-up questions are “Really?” and “What do these things have to do with the First District?”
I would also ask the Congressman about his propensity to vote against almost every piece of legislation that comes before the House. Harris voted against the Biden infrastructure bill. Andy, why did you vote against a bill that would bring money and needed social services to the First District?
Several of the Andy Harris campaign signs I have seen say “Fire Pelosi.” Nancy Pelosi (R-CA), of course, is Speaker of the House. Andy chose to tout his interest in “firing” the House Speaker, presumably by having Republicans win a majority in the House, rather than any other issue.
When I visited Harris’ campaign website, I was greeted with “Andy’s Message.” In part it reads, “The 2022 election is more important than ever. The Biden Agenda is hurting our communities. It’s time to stop the Biden-Pelosi Agenda – save our schools and protect our pocketbooks.”
Harris is confused about who he represents in Congress. Donald Trump, thank heaven, does not live in Maryland.
Andy, like many of the most prominent Republicans serving in the House and Senate today, appears more interested in national issues than the ones that impact the daily lives of his supposed constituents. Rather than work to represent their states or districts, these Republicans embrace the Trump agenda. That is sad.
Andy, if doing the job of representing the First District means working to make life better for the people living here, you are not doing your job.
Have you noticed that Harris is not reminding voters of his former support for term-limits? Harris broke his promise to serve no more than six terms in Congress. When he announced that he was breaking his promise, he said he had unfinished work to do fighting liberals and socialists.
Andy, is part of that unfinished work returning Donald Trump to the presidency? (I also wonder how the Oath Keepers feel about Andy breaking his oath on term limits, but that is another conversation.)
Lest anyone think I focus too much on Andy Harris, it is worth pondering what a sign reading “I’m with Heather” might tell us. Heather Mizeur is a Democrat with a solid legislative record. Her resume is impressive, including work on Capitol Hill, in Annapolis, and as a working farmer. Should Heather win in November, she would make an impact, almost immediately, on legislation relevant to the First District.
What legislation are we talking about? Visit Mizeur’s website to see her 10-point vision. It includes several items that the First District needs, such as better workforce training, infrastructure investments, and improved housing. A liberal agenda? Note that she also supports policies that should appeal to more conservative voters, such as tax relief for small businesses, support for the fishing industry, and reining in inflation. It sounds as though Heather understands the First District and plans to pursue priorities that are important to its residents.
Next time I talk to Harris supporters, I will ask them if they are with Andy. If they answer yes, I will try not to shake my head in disgust. I do not see anything about Handgun Harris to get excited about. Of course, in saying that, I do not want to see Trump returned to office and American democracy destroyed.
If you have not registered to vote, do so today. Our future depends on it.
J.E. Dean is a retired attorney and public affairs consultant writing on politics, government, and other subjects.
Postscript. This column was written prior to publication of the Spy’s profile of Congressman Andy Harris on October 3. In the video profile, Harris addresses his carrying a concealed firearm and the incident where a handgun was detected by a metal detector while entering the Floor of the House Chamber. Harris indicates he had forgotten he was carrying the weapon that day.
Congressman Harris’ discussion of the incident begins at 18 minutes into the video. He specifically discusses the incident at around 18:50.