Republican state Delegate Brett Wilson, who represents territory mostly inside the City of Hagerstown, was personally appointed by Gov. Larry Hogan this Monday to serve on the Washington County Circut Court bench.
Wilson will replace Circuit Judge Kenneth Long. Jr., who reached 70 this past May – the mandatory age when Maryland judges are forced off the bench.
Wilson will be sworn to the bench after he resigns from the Md. House of Delegates.
Then the Washington County Republican Central Committee will be tasked with appointing Wilson’s Republican replacement.
Finally, the Central Committee will submit one name – Hagerstown City Councilman Paul Corderman – to Gov. Hogan.
Gov. Hogan will then appoint Paul Corderman to fill Brett Wilson’s 2B delegate seat.
Corderman, first elected in 2016 as a Hagerstown City councilman, would be a logical choice to replace Wilson. He has earned the respect of the Republican establishment in Washington County, and the godfather of Washington County Republican politics, former state delegate Paul Muldowney, is Corderman’s biggest supporter and cheerleader.
Predictably, Jerry DeWolf, the dutiful chairman of the Republican Central Committee, is likely to be summoned by Don Vito Muldowney and will be given marching orders by Terry Baker and Neil Parrott.
And Jerry always follows his orders.
The Republican Central Committee should skip the application ruse and just announce today that it has already chosen Paul Corderman.
At least by doing so, the Central Committee won’t insult City residents by pretending to run a fair selection process – similar to how Linda Murray was selected by DeWolf and Company to replace Karen Harshman on the Washington County Board of Education.
This is not to say that Paul Corderman wouldn’t make for a fine state delegate.
Corderman has worked hard as a city councilman and has earned the support of both the City’s landlords and public unions. The firefighters and City police like Corderman – at least on the surface. And it would also be fair to say that Corderman is an establishment conservative who would do no harm to Hogan’s agenda.
But could Corderman win the seat in 2018 against, say, fellow Councilman Kristin Aleshire?
Or would Aleshire switch political parties, join the Republicans, and apply for the open seat? Aleshire could almost have the seat on a silver platter if he really wanted it.
Unless the Aleshire scenario takes form – and it’s unlikely – there is no reason for any City Republican to waste their time and apply in a process that is rigged to support Paul Corderman.
Watch and see.