Mailers In Local Howard County Races Cause A Stir

I have been writing about mailers in races for a while now…bad ones from the left and right….from local candidates and external entities sending this stuff to mailboxes right here in Howard County…and now I have two more for you…

Raj Kathuria (Howard County Council District 1): This mailer was widely talked about last night after being written about from Jason Booms. Here is the mailer:

A few thoughts:

  • This is a different mailer than I have written about in the past. It is not a full blown attack mailer…only half of one (on one side of this mailer).
  • The imagery on the backside of this mailer is bad (like REALLY bad). Raj and his team should have known better and should have expected this backlash given all of the talk about bad mailers this election season. I wonder who on his team put this together? (I have my guess but I do not know for sure).
  • Jason’s statement of “But this mailer is flat-out racist and misleading” is not wrong given the text and the image on the backside of this mailer.
  • Give the article from Jason a read for his thoughts (this was widely shared and many agreed with Jason’s comments):

Howard County Republican Party: They put this mailer out in support of John Liao. This mailer has not been widely talked about…but was mentioned by the local Democrat bloggers recently. Here is the mailer:

A few thoughts:

I did recommend an edit the Bill’s post last night (on The 53 Facebook page)…here is what I sent:

One edit I would recommend: “John Liao showed incredible literary chops in his recent negative mailer against Opel Jones”…this mailer did not come from his campaign…it came from the HoCoGOP. So maybe the dis here is on them and not John.

And Bill responded with the following:

I respectfully decline this edit. The source of the mailer was the local party but Liao approved it. Despite what Republicans tell you, they know every damn thing that state and local committees send out under their name. And so do Democrats.

OK…while I know that candidate and campaigns get a heads up before these things hit mailboxes (I have heard and seen this myself) the Liao “approved” it hit me as odd. Maybe Bill has an inside source with the HoCoGOP or someone in the Liao camp that has confirmed that John had direct approval over this mailer…or maybe this is just a total guess on his part…I know this…I don’t know and wont hold a candidate directly responsible for stuff sent out by other entities….because if I did…with all the negative mailers I have already written about…I would have to call out a number of candidates (Democrats as well as Republicans) this election cycle for the negative stuff hitting mailboxes. the Delegate District 9B race…there is a clear issue not addressed by bloggers yet where it is easy to draw a direct line between an outside entity sending negative mailers and one of the campaigns…but that is an article for later.

One final note…if I am going to write up a mailer I don’t love…I am going to show it to the readers for context to my comments. I know some do not love that I put them out there…but I think it is important to show it if I am going to write about it….that is just me.

Only 4 more days left in this election cycle…I am expecting candidates and supporters to be door knocking like crazy in the final days. Hopefully the negative mailers stop…but we will have to wait and see.

Be sure to do one thing Howard County…VOTE!!! If you did not get out over the past 8 days to vote early…make sure to get out and vote on Tuesday.

Scott E

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