G.O.P. Gains 6 In House; Possbily Minus-2 In Senate

November 3, 2010

Maryland’s House of Delegates gained six new Republicans, while its Senate may lose two seats long held by the minority party. All 188 seats were on the ballot this year for a General Assembly that has roughly twice as many Democrats as Republicans.

On the House side, four open seats across the state went to Republicans. Republicans also toppled two Democratic delegates, Sue Kullen and Virginia Clagett, who are district-mates of the General Assembly’s top leaders. The House now contains 98 Democrats and 43 Republicans — equaling the minority party’s modern-era high achieved under then-Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. in 2003.

Two Senate races remain extremely close but seem to be breaking in favor of Democrats who will replace Sen. J. Lowell Stoltzfus, an Eastern Shore Republican who retired this year, and Sen. Alex X. Mooney in Frederick County, who has been in a tough battle for re-election.

Considering how well Republicans did nationally, said House Speaker Michael E. Busch, Maryland Democrats held their own.

Kullen represents Calvert County in Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller’s district. She has been a member since 2004 and is president of the women’s caucus. Republican Mark Fisher defeated her by about 5 percentage points.

Clagett, first elected in 1994, is a District 30 delegate along with Busch. She came in fourth place last night, meaning Republican incumbent Del. Ron George and Busch will be joined by Republican Herb McMillan.  

Absentee votes are still being counted in Stoltzfus’ old district on the Eastern Shore. But Democrats are cautiously optimistic that Democratic Del. Jim Mathias will edge out Michael James. And it appears that Democratic challenger Ronald Young will prevail over Mooney, a senator since 1999.

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