A “purple wave” crashed into Frederick County on Tuesday night, as incumbent County Executive Jan Gardner (D) won a second term in office while the partisan split on the County Council remains too close to call.
The Council races emphasize the “purple” nature of the county’s electorate, with the two at-large seats being narrowly split D/R in a very close four-way race, while one district race appears close enough for possible recount attention.
County Executive Gardner captured 54,052 votes (51.8%). Her opponent, Maryland Delegate Kathy Afzali (R), received 45,325 votes (43.4%).
There was a significant shakeup on the County Council, with only two incumbents, M.C. Keegan-Ayer (D) and Jessica Fitzwater (D), returning.
Incumbent Kirby Delauter (R) ran an unsuccessful bid for County Executive, losing to Afzali in the Republican primary. Incumbent Billy Shreve (R) sought to represent District 8 in the Maryland State Senate but was defeated by Craig Giangrande in the primary election.
Incumbents Bud Otis (R). Tony Chmelik (R) and Jerry Donald (D) all lost in their respective County Council primaries.
As of Wednesday morning, the winners for County Council are:
Kai John Hagen (D – At-Large) with 45,638 votes (24.0%)
Philip Dacey (R – At-Large) with 44,357 votes (23.3%)
Jerry Donald (D – District 1) with 11,385 votes (50.4%)
Steven McKay (R – District 2) with 13,380 votes (57.1%)
M.C. Keegan-Ayer (D – District 3) with 10,983 votes (63.7%)
Jessica Fitzwater (D – District 4) with 12,080 votes (61.5%)
Michael Blue (R – District 5) with 11,881 votes (64.1%)
All election results are unofficial until absentee and provisional ballots are counted. As of election night, 6,854 absentee ballots had been issued to Frederick County voters, and 3,592 had been returned, according to the Maryland State Board of Elections. The first round of absentee ballots have been counted, 84 out of 86 precincts. The final two precincts, provisional’s and second round of absentees, will be counted and finalized by November 16th.
Note: All vote totals cited in this article are from the unofficial results of the Maryland State Board of Elections (MSBE) as of 9:00 am on 2018-11-15.