By Ryan Miner
Woody Spong resigned from his appointed commissioner seat this afternoon, according to the Herald-Mail. Facing insurmountable obstacles in Annapolis, Spong’s appointment would have inevitably been shut down by the Senate Executive Nominations Committee.
I have no doubt Mr. Spong will stay involved in the political process behind the scenes. I wish him the best moving forward.
Now that Spong is no longer an acting commissioner, the seat he once occupied is vacant.
The Washington County Republican Central Committee is a total disaster, led by Steven Showe – the recalcitrant chairman who failed miserably by ensuring that Terry Baker’s yes man would get the nod last April without question.
In short, the Washington County Republican Central Committee cannot be trusted to execute its constitutional responsibilities.
Gov. Hogan specifically asked Maryland’s Republican Central Committees to send three names to him when making appointments. Washington County bucked Hogan and sent only one name – Spong’s name. You would think a Republican Central Committee would show a modicum of deference to its Republican governor. Not even close. Washington County’s Republican Central Committee thumbed Gov. Hogan in the eye and deliberately defied his simple request.
Spong’s appointment was never vetted by Washington County’s Republican Central Committee. The committee rushed to complete the process and even failed to interview all applicants who applied. It should be noted that several applicants more qualified than Woody Spong applied for the seat and were never even interviewed by the Republican Central Committee. Fairness wasn’t first on the committee’s priority list.
Spong was naturally Baker’s hand selected choice. The committee abided by Baker’s request. The good ol’ boy network in Washington County is still alive and well with Terry Baker keeping the flame burning. When Terry Baker makes a backroom deal, it’s set it stone.
I don’t trust the Washington County Republican Central Committee, and neither should you. Had the committee taken its time to vet each commissioner applicant then it wouldn’t be in the mess it is in now. The committee failed epically to do its due diligence.
The Washington County community should not allow its Republican Central Committee to make the same mistake twice.
I am a strong proponent of the central committee process, but Washington County has become the exception to the rule. The backroom Republican insiders simply cannot be trusted to execute a fair and transparent process.
That’s why I propose a special election be held to fill the vacant commissioner seat left open after Spong’s resignation.
If you, like me, don’t trust unreliable Republican insiders and hard partisans in Washington County to make the right decision on behalf of the entire county, then you should demand a special election be held.
Don’t let Steve Showe and his cabal of Republican insiders make another irresponsible decision.
The Maryland primary is slated to be held on April 26. Perfect timing to hold a special election.
If a special election doesn’t happen – and it likely will not, I presume – then demand the Washington County Republican Central Committee hold open interviews and in public. Demand transparency. Demand the committee interview every applicant. Demand that every applicant is given a fair shake.
Washington County, it’s time to put your foot down and stand up to the Washington County Republican Central Committee.