Have you seen this mailer in your mailbox or on social media yet here in Howard County?
This is a mailer paid for from “Vote Yes on Question 2” – a Ballot Issue Committee in 2020.
Four Howard County Board of Education candidates (Molyett, Watts, Mosley and Mallo) in 2020 listed “in-kind contributions” from Vote Yes on Question 2 in their latest campaign finance reports: https://scotteblog.com/2020/10/24/summary-from-the-campaign-finance-reports-of-candidates-running-for-howard-county-board-of-education-october-2020/. Not big money…a little over $430 for each candidate per the listings. (note – I have not looked up the finance reports for any other candidates listed on the mailer).
- A “yes” vote supports authorizing sports and events wagering at certain licensed facilities with state revenue intended to fund public education.
- A “no” vote opposes authorizing sports and events wagering at certain licensed facilities.
Learn more about it here: https://ballotpedia.org/Maryland_Question_2,_Sports_Betting_Measure_(2020)
Visit the Vote Yes on Question 2 website here to learn more about this issue: https://voteyesontwo.com/
I wondered who was funding this Ballot Issue Committee so I took a look at the campaign finance reports: VIEW HERE
The primary funding sources to date have been (per the campaign finance reports):
- FanDuel ($2,250,000)
- DraftKings ($1,750,000)
- BetMGM LLC ($500,000)
$4,500,000 in direct funding sources (per the three finance reports)…with FanDuel and DraftKings being $4,000,000 of the funding (or nearly 89%).
The Washington Football Inc (think Washington Football Team) has also provided more than $100,000 in In-Kind contributions to this Ballot Issue Committee.
So the questions I have include…why is this entity playing a role in local races here in Howard County via that mailer? Why is this role totally partisan in nature (particularly for an issue that does not appear to be a partisan issue)? Did Howard County Executive Calvin Ball (and his campaign team) approve the use of his image and quote on this local mailer (one would have to assume he and his team did…right)?
It appears that mailers may have gone out to other areas as well but I have not seen copies of those yet….but the latest campaign finance report for Vote Yes on Question 2 does list a number of other candidate campaigns outside of Howard County….but obviously my focus here on this blog is Howard County.
I have not reached out to candidates or the County Executive about this mailer. It might be something I do in the future or I will wait to see if any candidates provide additional information about this mailer on social media.
I support question 2 on the upcoming ballot. I have no issue with it and what the money will go towards in the future (education). I do have some concerns with this local mailer from an entity funding by sports betting entities on local elections (just seems odd to me). I get a mailer about the issue…but this seems to go way above and beyond that for this election cycle.
What do you think about this mailer and where it came from for our local elections here in Howard County?