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Duncan's Stunner


Doug Duncan's expected announcement today that he is dropping out of the governor's race has stunned the state's political world.

His two rivals, Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley and Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. offered no immediate reaction. O'Malley's office planned to issue a written statement, and Ehrlich said only he was "digesting" the news as he hustled to the executive mansion in Annapolis.

By  |  June 22, 2006; 1:00 PM ET
Categories:  Governor  
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I'm so sorry to read that he has been sick. He's a fine man and I hope MoCo and the State of Maryland can continue to benefit from his leadership and expertise. I really wish him well!

Posted by: Feel better soon Doug | June 22, 2006 1:37 PM | Report abuse

I'm so glad Mr. Duncan had the courage to deal with this sickness - the sooner he beats it, the better off Maryland is - we need his leadership, whatever job he is doing.

Posted by: James | June 22, 2006 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Amen. He's a good and decent man, and has been a great leader. I'm sad, but still proud as he seems to have made the best decision for his family. That's integrity. I hope we haven't seen the last of him in public life.

Posted by: Marc | June 22, 2006 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Get well soon Doug.

And thanks to the Demcratic machine-you are your worst enemy!

Now it's clear. There are two choices in November. A far left Democrat with a poor mayoral record virtually unknown outside of the Baltimore beltway. Or a strong incumbent centerist Republican who has brought Maryland out of the fiscal red and into the black.

Posted by: BG from PG | June 22, 2006 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Goodbye Doug...the door is that way!

As political excuses go, I suppose now we're supposed to feel sorry for him. Because it's depression, we're supposed to not look at the awful things he's done to the county.

Sorry, Doug. Not that easy. Really glad you're moving out of Rockville and hopefully into political obscurity. Leave your Republican Party membership card in the tray by the door as you go.

Posted by: Glad He's Gone | June 22, 2006 3:38 PM | Report abuse

"Now it's clear":

A big-city mayor that has made great strides toward bringing Baltimore back to greatness, as cited by several national publications...or a megalomaniac governor that has abused his powers by appearing in "nonpartisan" ads to advance his campaign, has a wife that used her office to get a TV job, has raised tuition at state universities to astronomical levels, and has advanced the cause of a $3 billion toll road that will hurt the environment, destroy private homes, and not take any cars off the Beltway.

Yes, the choice is clear.

Posted by: Mad In Maryland | June 22, 2006 3:39 PM | Report abuse

In response to the idiot "glad he's gone," I don't think Doug's trying to make anyone feel sorry for him. He made the right decision for his family...he could have just cited vague "personal reasons" and not talked about his depression publicly. The public still stigmatizes depression, and probably still will. So yes, Doug's decision to talk about it is courageous as hell.

Of course, his wild-eyed Montgomery County detractors (a minority) will continue to assume the absolute worst from Doug for no rational reason whatsoever. Many of these detractors are closet-racist NIMBY's who speak only in slogans as if they're trained rats in a socialization experiment. I wonder if "Glad He's Gone" is one of them. Fortunately we're in a system where even programmed foot soldiers for a defamation campaign deserve good leaders.

But we're also in an unfair world, and Doug deserves better than the likes of you.

Posted by: Marc | June 22, 2006 3:48 PM | Report abuse

As another human being, Doug has my sympathy. At least his disease is probably curable or manaqaeable, and is unlikely to be fatal. Hopefully, he will have a speedy recovery.

From a poltical point of view, though, I'm relieved to see him out of the race. I can think of only one major positive accomplishment attributable to Doug: the revitalization of downtown Silver Spring. Unfortunately, he also left the county with crumbling roads, attracted illegal aliens to our schools (who are very expensive to educate), brought gridlock to our streets, raised our taxes to unheard of levels, and brought crime to our previously safe county.

Still, I wish Doug the best in the future.

Posted by: MCR | June 22, 2006 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Sorry to lose such a great candidate. I was a Duncan supporter, through and through. That said, I think that every Democrat in the state now needs to strongly unite behind O'Malley with time, money and opinion. The next exit I want to read about is Ehrlich's.

Posted by: Paul | June 22, 2006 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm with Paul. Go O'Malley.

Posted by: Marc | June 22, 2006 3:57 PM | Report abuse

No matter what our opinions were of the two Democratic candidates, I think most of MoCo and Prince George's will strongly support Mayor O'Malley to beat the current Republican Governor. Now we have a chance to unite in that goal!

I hope that Mayor O'Malley spends some more time in MoCo and that Doug feels good enough to help him out here and in PG.

Posted by: Feel better soon Doug | June 22, 2006 4:11 PM | Report abuse

I'm an O'Malley supporter but I've liked what Duncan's done for my home county. I hope he recovers and is back in the game soon - someone will need to follow Makulski when she retires. I also hope that people suffering from the same illness learn from Duncan's example and seek treatment. Democrats are united in Maryland for a gubernatorial candidate and in hopes that Duncan has a full and speedy recovery.

Posted by: Mike | June 22, 2006 4:12 PM | Report abuse

But I really can't see him making a political comeback based on his performance in this primary.

Posted by: A lot of Duncan love on these boards right now . . . | June 22, 2006 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I'm a PG democrat (who voted for Bob Ehrlich)and was looking forward to supporting the Duncan campaign. I've admired what he has done with his county and felt confident that he would make a good governor. I'm sorry he is not well and admire his courage to step aside.

My choice is very clear now though- I will not be supporting the O'Malley ticket but will cast my vote again for Gov. Bob.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2006 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Sad news. I was a big Duncan supporter and now I am left having to choose between Martin O'Malley, who has driven his city into the ground, and Bob Ehrlich, who seems to have zero principles at all. This is going to be a rough year.

Posted by: Fred | June 22, 2006 6:12 PM | Report abuse

I will be writing in Duncan this November. I refuse to vote for O'Malley because he is the only Democrat running. His record in Baltimore is clear. O'Malley's only concern is O'Malley, not Baltimore, and not Maryland. His goal is to become President. I don't like having no choice as a citizen. I can't imagine O'Malley having the state's future in his hands.

Posted by: Francisco | June 22, 2006 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Fred and Francisco, it's Duncan supporters like you guys who may help re-elect Ehrlich because you're too stubborn and brainwashed to see the real goal here--electing someone with the right principles into the governor's mansion.

Posted by: Kenneth | June 22, 2006 8:50 PM | Report abuse

What principles does Martin O'Malley have other than self promotion? Making the statement that because I was a Duncan supporter, I should automatically support O'Malley becasue, otherwise, I am helping re-elect Ehrlich means nothing. To me, there is no difference between O'Malley and Ehrlich, so I don't care if not supporting O'Malley gets Ehrlich re-elected. I don't vote for party, I vote for principles. At this point, it really makes no difference to me whether Ehrlich or O'Malley wins.

Posted by: Fred | June 22, 2006 9:36 PM | Report abuse

Duncan's problems are not his health. They are legal. This is the typical excuse politicians give just prior to indictment.

Posted by: Truth Out | June 22, 2006 9:54 PM | Report abuse

I'm with Fred, I will not hold my nose and vote as I have done so many times when voting the party line. I guess I will change my registration to independent once again.

Posted by: Francisco | June 23, 2006 2:02 AM | Report abuse

People like Glad He's Gone, Truth Out and Merlin are the reason people become so fed up with politics. These people have no ideas, have never had the guts to get involved and prefer to sit on the sidelines and sling trash and venom.

After taking a lot of time to consider both, I supported Doug. I will bet none of the three named above have ever met the man and spent time talking to him as I did, let alone his family whom they also like to trash. Had they done so, they would have found a decent, caring and truly sincere man committed to making everyone's life a bit better...nothing these three have ever likely taken the time to do.

Some would say they should be ashamed. I won't. They don't have the collective integrity to comprehend the concept.

Doug's withdrawl is a loss to the party and our state. Given the fodder O'Malley has left Ehrlich in the past 3 years, I suspect it will be a landslide for him.

Posted by: Tired | June 23, 2006 8:18 AM | Report abuse

"Without publicity, all other checks are insufficient; in comparison of publicity,
all other checks are of small account" -- Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) philosopher, legal & social reformer
Convicted felon, Abramoff, is cooperating with the FBI, he has named over sixty politicians. This is germane to this topic and needs to be publicized by our newspapers, public service announcements by politicians is no substitute for actual information.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 23, 2006 8:49 AM | Report abuse

O'Malley stands for the a lot of the same things Duncan does - that is why Duncan is supporting his candidacy.

I suspect these Duncan - Ehrlich turnovers are actually Ehrlich supporters who are terrified of unified Democrats.


Posted by: James | June 23, 2006 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Martin O'Malley is the most selfless public servant I've ever seen, he deeply cares about Marylanders unlike Ehrlich, what's wrong with having higher ambitions and O'Malley becoming President someday, that just means that he's got to do a great job as Md Gov to get there, which benefits us all.

Posted by: ron | June 23, 2006 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Much as I liked Doug personally I will never forgive him for the nasty "end gridlock" campaign he ran to run Blair Ewing off the County Council. I was very conflicted about supporting him and now the decision is clear and I'll give my support to O'Malley. Anything to get rid of Ehrlich.

Posted by: Silver Spring | June 23, 2006 10:39 AM | Report abuse

You know, AG Curran is a class act for knowing when to throw in the towel.

Doug Duncan is a class act for telling us, truthfully what's wrong and then bowed out gracefully.

When is William Donald Schaefer going to bow out and say his time is done. What an arrogant, disagreeable man.

Posted by: CLASS ACTS | June 23, 2006 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Now Doug is claiming he is DEPRESSED??? Well, join the club Doug. Those of us at Stop Ducanomics Now have been depressed for quite some time. We've watched as you have given our county away to illegal aliens, raised the property and income tax to unmanagable levels, and welcomed your developer friends to nearly all of our open spaces. Your policies and campaign finances will become known even though you've become "depressed" just a week before the filing deadline. I don't care if your End Gridlock put the brakes on free tax and spend liberals like Blair Ewing and Marc Elrich, but I do care that you've promised away our children's futures to special interest unions and a education system which illustrates a county government that has raised more money than it knows what to do with. Is there any way your Depression is spreading to Silverman and Leggett and Floyd? Because, every time I listen to any of these guys it sounds like your voice? The only candidate for Montgomery County Executive this year is Ficker, and I intend to vote for him. He is an independent, and his questions will be on the ballot once again, trying to keep spending limits and restore honesty to our government. As for the council, I hope the voters vote out EVERY one of them. Twenty years of Praisner, Knapp, Subin, Leventhal, and their tax and spend policies are over. Hopefully we will get a council that will enforce our zoning laws, stop allowing illegal aliens to dominate our social services, and free our communities from the MS 13 gangs which Duncan and this council invited into our jurisdiction. El Salvador is calling for you El Duncano, and I suggest you and all your politico thugs head south of the border!!!!!! Hasta La Vista Baby!!!!!!

Posted by: El Slavador is a Great Place to Recover | June 23, 2006 2:29 PM | Report abuse

I have two words for Duncan supporters who now claim they won't support O'Malley - - -- Ralph Nader.
Remember how he said it didn't matter if Gore or Bush was elected? Now we have a failing war in Iraq, an incredibly huge budget deficit, and rampant government incompetence ala Katrina. Please don't make the same kind of mistake in our State. O'Malley will be a fine Democratic Governor for Maryland. Note that Doug Duncan is supporting O'Malley. If you respecthim, respect his endorsement too!

Posted by: it matters | June 23, 2006 2:50 PM | Report abuse

I disagreed with Doug's politics, but thought he had good character (i won't say the same about the other candidate in the Dem race). I wish him well in his recovery.

Posted by: Bryan | June 23, 2006 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Martin O'Malley is the most selfless public servant I've ever seen, he deeply cares about Marylanders unlike Ehrlich, what's wrong with having higher ambitions and O'Malley becoming President someday, that just means that he's got to do a great job as Md Gov to get there, which benefits us all.

Posted by: ron | June 23, 2006 3:06 PM | Report abuse

A more important question is what is going to happen in Montgomery County in the next four years. But out of 950,000 people in Montgomery County, Leggett and Silverman only want to debate one, each other. The County Executive will have to be able to debate the Governor, other County Executives. the Council and maybe even Congress and the President. This seat is open for the first time in l2 years. Leggett and Silverman are trying to cheat the voters out of an election because they never want to ask themselves the tough questions. They have consistantly refused to debate me, someone who has collected 7,000 signatures to get on the ballot and whose ballot questions in the last electiom received over 350,000 votes. They opposed these questions and told lies about them. Come on progressives when are you going to get the guts to demand that tweedle dum and tweedle dee engage in a real debate. Any Judge can tell you that a friendly adversary process brings out the truth. Robin Ficker Independent for County Executive.

Posted by: Robin Ficker | June 23, 2006 3:08 PM | Report abuse


Although I had never heard of Doug Duncan before the current "mediastorm" about his decision to pull out of a political race because of a diagnosis of depression, I would like to share my disappointment about this decision, if, in fact, a history of depression is the sole reason for his withdrawal.

Depression is the product of many stressors, physical and/or mental, and can result, in part, from trying to honestly deal with complexity rather than distort it into a false simplicity. Politics is one of the best examples of this process in action.

Although I do no know Mr. Duncan, nor did I know Senator Thomas Eagleton, the candidate for Vice-President in 1972 who also withdrew, in part, due to the emergence, during the campaign, of his history of depression, it appears that they both know that most Americans prefer simplicity over complexity even if it means distortion of the truth.

In my opinion, this way of perceiving and dealing with issues, using sharp "soundbytes" kindled by "mediaspeak" and abused by intolerant adversaries, reveals a diminished ability to see the gray of reality. It appears to be a form of angry, defensiveness which we know is usually a cover of an underlying fearfulness.

Moreover, people who oversimplify complexity seem to be unaware of the underlying fearfulness which produces this illusion of simplicity. (Examples of this may be seen when angry reactionaries respond to this comment with attacks on its logic and the character of the writer.)

Depression, when adequately treated, can result in greater awareness and understanding of ourselves and others, a characteristic I would prefer over a limited, simplistically narrow focus in a politician.

Posted by: Ange Lobue, MD, MPH, BSPharm | June 23, 2006 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Ficker, there is a reason you are not taken seriously. Whether it is your wily antics at the Verizon Center or your crass beration of DeMatha athletic opponents, you have proven yourself to be a clown and a hack. Simply wanted to be heard does not entitle you to be. There is a reason the people of Montgomery County don't want to pay attention to you, we've all seen you pony act on Comcast Sports Network and are embarrassed everytime we read about your juvenile antics in Sports Illustrated. You have done an incredible job of making Mark Cuban look mature.

Posted by: Ficker's candidacy is like an SNL skit | June 23, 2006 4:18 PM | Report abuse

One of the tactics the other side uses is to disenfranchise via disgust. They pretend to be someone else and say something so stupid or derogatory as to turn-off the public to the political process.

We all have our commitment and moral compass. Don't let some goofball deny you your right to vote or to express your opinion - especially due to disgust. They claim two votes on election day (the one they cast and the one you don't) and success is theirs.

Posted by: Ed Mann | June 23, 2006 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Though I do believe that Duncan suffers from depression and wish him well, I wonder whether this was the only reason he quit the campaign.

Was there some news story that was on the verge of being broken about Doug.

I know I read on these boards in recent days that Doug allegedly ran an anti-semitic political campaign against an opponent early in his career.

Can someone share what they think?

Posted by: Do we really know why Duncan quit? | June 23, 2006 6:31 PM | Report abuse

The Ficker critic above is typical. They never mention any issue. They like to get personal just like lawyers do when they are weak on the law and the facts. No wonder Leggett and Silverman don't to talk about Clarksburg, the biggest scandal in Montgomery in 50 years. No wonder Leggett aqnd Silverman don't want to talk about how they worked with Jack Abramhoff to give the $10 million Belt Jr. High building to Abramhoff's Yeshiva School. No wonder Leggett and Silverman don't want to talk about the fact that they have yet to name a tax between them that they don't want to increase. No wonder they don't want to talk about how Montgomery squandered a $300 million surplus and has an unfunded $650 million General Motors -like pension liability for county employees. No wonder they don't want to talk about Montgomery's l4 schools on the watch list or 50% cost overruns on nine school construction projects. No wonder they don't want to talk about their opposition to a new Potomac Bridge, their opposition to extending Metro to Germantown and their failure to connect the Silver Spring and Bethesda Metro stops for twenty five years. No wonder they don't want to talk about how they've funded political campaigns with 64%-71% developer money while giving ordinary citizens the cold shoulder and developers back door access. No wonder they don't want to talk about how they have supported overriding the charter's property tax revenue limit for three years and how they plan to do so again after the election. No wonder Leggett and Silverman don't want to talk about the quintupling of the county's energy tax and the breaking of the promise to sunset this tax. No wonder they don't want to talk about their dumb spending which has led the county budget to double in nine years while the county population has risen less than 20% making Montgomery County the fastest growing big county government in the United States. No wonder they don't want to talk about their support of developer buyouts of the requirement that new developments have l2.5% low income housing. No wonder they don't want to talk about their conflict of interest between saying they are for low income housing and collecting contributions from so many developers, including those of Clarksburg, who make more money building expensive housing. No wonder they don't want to talk about how attorneys for developers were actually writing opinions for the planning board. No wonder Leggett and Silverman want only to pat themselves on the back which they can do 24-7 after the dynamic man I work for, Robin Ficker, is elected County Executive.

Posted by: angelina | June 23, 2006 11:26 PM | Report abuse

For uncensored news please bookmar:

Why should the GOP worry, it controls the voting machines

By Bev Conover
Online Journal Editor & Publisher

With each passing day, the US slides further into some dark farce that would have us rolling in the aisles with laughter if the consequences weren't so monstrous and bloody.

Good poker players know when to fold 'em. But there are no good poker players in Washington. Not among the incompetents in the Bush administration. Not among the Republican dunderheads who control both houses of Congress and very few among the so-called opposition -- a.k.a. Democrats.

It's bad enough when the imbecilic Decider in Chief makes a fool of himself, as he did this week in Vienna. First, by making like a "girlie-man" by stomping his feet and telling Iran not to test his patience over its perfectly legal nuclear program. Who in hell does he think he is? Oops, he's the Decider.

Then Decider Bush stupidly says it's "absurd" for Europeans to suggest that the US is the greatest threat to world stability. Right, just don't glance over at the debacles in Iraq and Afghanistan.

And, in all his infantile insolence, he couldn't resist lashing out at the third leg of his "axis of evil," the North Korean, warning them if they test fired their long-range missile, he would pick up his joystick and launch his (non-existent) missile defense whatevers to shoot them down.

Then he goes to Hungary and tells the Iraqis they should be inspired by the 1956 Hungarian Uprising, which the Soviets crushed in 12 days. It only took the Hungarians 33 more years to rid themselves of tyranny. Some inspiration for the Iraqis or was Bush telling them they would be under Corporate America's boot for three more decades?

Meanwhile back in Washington, the GOP leadership in the House and Senate, taking their orders from the Decider and his controller, Dark Side Cheney -- and armed with the Pentagon's illegal political talking points -- instead of folding 'em on Iraq, buckled under and decreed the Republicans would "stay the course."

Never mind that the majority of Americans want us to leave. Never mind that the majority of Iraqis want us to leave. Never mind that US Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, former Unocal adviser and our current puppet in Iraq, is busy having documents shredded in preparation for the Green Zone being overrun by the Iraqi resistance, which the Bushies and the corporate media insist upon calling "insurgents."

Despite all the nonsense about the gains being made in Iraq that is spewed daily by the administration and dutifully reported by the corporate media, plus Cheney's repeated pronouncements that the "insurgency" is in its "last throes," Khalilzad's leaked confidential memo paints a grim picture of the stark reality that life in Iraq worsens daily.

But Khalilzad's revelations are meaningless to the congressional Republicans who reject the wimpy Democrats paltry proposals for withdrawal and accuse them of being "defeatists" who want to "cut and run."

Now why do you suppose the Republicans, who claim to be so worried that the Democrats will retake Congress in November, think that continuing the killing of Americans and Iraqis is their key to victory? Because their worries are a sham; they make cheap for copy to fill the spaces between the ads in newspapers and the commercials on so-called TV and radio "news." It's all a game, a sick, sick game that can't get much sicker.

The Republicans control the easily rigged touch screens and optical scanners most Americans will use to cast their votes on.

The GOP is utterly contemptuous of the American people and what the people thought was their democratic republic. And the Democrats are not much better. Do American have to have feces rubbed in their faces before they grasp what is going on?
An even more frightening scenario is ff the Democrats should emerge victorious in November, voters, especially Democrats, will think they have prevailed and they will pat themselves on the back and promptly go back to sleep, allowing the Dems to play their phased withdrawal and redeployment games. When, in truth, if the Democrats regain control of one or both houses, it will have been the handiwork of the corporate powers behind the curtain that decided a change was better for their bottom lines. Rigged computerized voting machines can go both ways.

Posted by: che | June 24, 2006 4:43 AM | Report abuse

Duncan not only has left the governors' race, but as of 2007 will be a private citizen. How many doctors, lawyers or other professionals do you know decide to leave their 25+ year vocation after being "diagnosed" as clinically depressed by a psychiatrist just 48 hours earlier? BTW, no psychiatrist would diagnose a patient with any condition after just one visit. Why would Duncan allow the MC Chamber of Commerce to endorse him less than 24 hours before his Thursday announcement, only to withdraw and make Rich Parsons look like an idiot (actually that's not that hard)? No doubt that if Duncan actually saw a clinician on Monday, it was only after the Feds informed him of an indictment headed his way. The other shoe hasn't dropped yet and when it does, Duncan's "depression" will be understood for what it really is... an excuse for corrupt and indictable activities. Duncan's depression may turn out to be real after all, when he doing his 5 to 10 year stretch in a cell next to Jack Abramoff.

Posted by: A Concerned Voter | June 24, 2006 6:41 AM | Report abuse

Duncan not only has left the governors' race, but as of 2007 will be a private citizen. How many doctors, lawyers or other professionals do you know decide to leave their 25+ year vocation after being "diagnosed" as clinically depressed by a psychiatrist just 48 hours earlier? BTW, no psychiatrist would diagnose a patient with any condition after just one visit. Why would Duncan allow the MC Chamber of Commerce to endorse him less than 24 hours before his Thursday announcement, only to withdraw and make Rich Parsons look like an idiot (actually that's not that hard)? No doubt, if Duncan actually saw a clinician on Monday, it was only after the Feds informed him of an indictment headed his way. The other shoe hasn't dropped yet and when it does, Duncan's "depression" will be understood for what it really is... an excuse for corrupt and indictable activities. Duncan's depression may turn out to be real after all, when he doing his 5 to 10 year stretch in a cell next to Jack Abramoff.

Posted by: A Concerned Voter | June 24, 2006 6:44 AM | Report abuse

We have difficult choices at this stage in the conspiracy to defraud the voters of their right to representative government. Two voting companies & two brothers count 80 percent of U.S. election using both scanners & touchscreens ....
April 28, 2004--Voters can run, but they can't hide from these guys. Meet the Urosevich brothers, Bob and Todd. Their respective companies, Diebold and ES&S, will count (using both computerized ballot scanners and touchscreen machines) about 80 percent of all votes cast in the upcoming U.S. presidential election.
Both ES&S and Diebold have been caught installing uncertified software in their machines. Although there is no known certification process that will protect against vote rigging or technical failure, it is a requirement of most, if not all, states.
And, according to author Bev Harris in her book, Black Box Voting, " . . . one of the founders of the original ES&S (software) system, Bob Urosevich, also oversaw development of the original software now used by Diebold Election Systems." From Lynn Landes online journal
But this is not the only salient point to consider try reading a transcript or viewing a clip of the
Clint Curtis sworn testimony before members of House Judiciary Committee where software engineer, Clinton Curtis testifies how he was paid to write undetectable secret software for these machines to flip the vote without detection... and see for yourself or perhaps a short video will bring you up to speed for further details and last but not least here in Maryland we have Linda Shade of to catalogue the extent this has been going on in Maryland and being covered up, i.e. TrueVoteMD Releases Documents Detailing Diebold Failures, Violations of State Law In Response to Florida Diebold Hack, Lamone Expresses 'Great Concern' about Threat to Maryland
TrueVoteMD urges de-certification of biting system and halt to "secretive" style of the state board of elections...
Many of us are concerned and are doing our best to return to honest voting in Maryland and throughout America but everyone needs to become educated with the facts to restore the integrity of our elections and hence our government. Go to and get educated and get involved.

Posted by: wake up | June 24, 2006 8:00 AM | Report abuse

A frustrated voter writes a song to express his frustration with the vote fraud issue. you can hear the clip at this link:

Posted by: no more vote fraud | June 24, 2006 8:34 AM | Report abuse

There seems to be a growing rumor that Duncan has been under treatment for depression for a lot longer than he says. If that's so, let's speculate a little about why he decided to withdraw now. I think he is looking toward his political future. Despite the spin attempts by the Duncan campaign, it has become increasingly clear that Duncan was unlikely to win the nomination. And time was running out.The deadline for filing candidacy is coming up on July 3. By dropping out now, Duncan can still make his often repeated claim that he never lost an election. And he can blame his poor performance on his illness. That same illness can be used as his own personal version of the "race card" down the road; he can accuse any of his critics of prejudice against those with mental illness (just like he accused them of anti-Semitism in the Belt school controversy). If O'Malley loses to Ehrlich, Duncan is the presumptive nominee in 2010. My guess is Duncan will keep saying he supports O'Malley, but won't lift a finger to help him. And people will excuse it because he's "clinically depressed". I know I sound cynical, but I have a personal reason. I've suffered from recurrent depression for many years, just like many other nobodies. I don't like to see someone exploit it for political gain, which is how I see Duncan's actions. I invite him to prove that I'm all wrong.

Posted by: Rumormonger | June 24, 2006 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Before giving him my support, I want to know how O'Malley plans to continue Duncan's legacy of taking a lead on global warming. Better yet, I'd like to hear that O'Malley will put Duncan in charge of such policy if O'Malley is elected governor. Fact is, Ehrlich signed the Healthy Air Act which included brining Maryland into the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. What would O'Malley do beyond this to combat climate change if we give him our support?

Posted by: Hyattsville, MD | June 24, 2006 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I do not doubt Doug Duncan suffers from depression. It is my understanding that, when he was a student a Good Counsel High School in the early 1970's, he had already been diagnosed as "manic-depressive" [I don't know what the popular name for that malady is today], and was regularly taking medication for that condition.
It is my understanding that was pretty much common knowledge among his friends and classmates.
Doug, even when he was in High School made it abundantly clear his goal in life was to aspire to the highest political office possible, often saying he would be a US Senator someday.
When he began his political career as Mayor of Rockville, and even when he was first elected as County Executive, he seemed to be, all things considered in balance, a fairly dedicated public servant.
However, his tenure in the Executive Office Building was marked by an increasing sense of self-importance and a drive not necessarily to serve the public interest, but only to serve his personal ambitions to get re-elected and then move on to even higher office, at the expense of the citizens and taxpayers of the County, and our children and grandchildren.
The best example was his particularly under-handed and downright nasty "End Gridlock" campaign against incumbent Council Members during the 2002 election cycle.
Perhaps Doug's latest bout with depression came about as a result of the fact his campaign was facing a very steep uphill battle.
But I suggest there may be more to it. I am surprised that the Duncan campaign's receipt a few years ago of something like $20K, which only recently came to light, from some island in the South Pacific tied to Jack Abramoff garnered little more than passing interest in the press.
As I recall, Doug recently stated he was not previously aware of the receipt of that contributiuon.
While it is correct that under Maryland election law the periodic reports required of a political committee established for a candidate do not require the candidate's signature [only the Chairman & Treasurer], common sense says that contributions received are always reported to the candidate, especially in a campaign as sophisticated as Doug's. A candidate always wants to know, in real time, who his or her "friends" are.
And it is just beyond the pale of mere coincidence that such substantial donations were received at the same time Doug decided to turn over the former Belt Junior High School to an organization closely tied to Mr. Abramoff.
Mr. Abramoff's web of deceit and dishonesty appears to spread far and wide, and it would be truly unfortunate if Doug found himself entangled in the web. But the lure of money is a strong temptress.
Is there looming over Doug's head a Grand Jury subpoena, or even worse, a possible indictment? Can't tell you, don't know.
But perhaps that is the real reason for Doug's recent bout of depression.
Just a thought from a Montgomery County native.

Posted by: MONTCO NATIVE | June 24, 2006 11:46 AM | Report abuse


I'm sure you're writing from Havana or Caracus aren't you? Hell no. You're a suburbanite gas guzzling SUV driver just like the rest of us.

I'm also sure that you're not checking real estate listings in Pyongyang and planning on changing your citizenship are you?

Maybe you could go to Venezuela and spew your anti-American venom while being toted around on Chavez's leash ala Harry Belafonte. Then you can fly back on the next plane to the US (first class, of course) to your Beverly Hills home where you're protecting under the very freedoms you despise.

Don't like the voting process? Move to Venezuela where they have "fair" elections.

Posted by: Ironic isn't it? | June 24, 2006 11:49 AM | Report abuse

I was fortunate enough th wrestle for four years at Dematha High under coach Dick Messier,. being his captain my senior year and for five years at U.Cal. Davis in the PAC 10. My Dad, Robin Ficker came to every match, every tournament. Never once did he berate a wrestler opponent. In fact, he was my #l fan.
The critic above is probably a relative of one of the many guys we pinned at Dematha. We
won the National Preps, the Maryland Independent School championship and the Washington area Catholic championship. We won about 95% of our dual meets at Dematha. One of our wrestlers, Wes Cummings, set the Maryland record for most wins.I know some folks got upset at us, but if they had worked as hard as we did, they would have done better. If you want a good wrestling coach go to Dematha. Flynn Ficker P.S. My Dad has never been in the Verizon Center.

Posted by: Flynn Ficker | June 24, 2006 1:31 PM | Report abuse

To rumormonger, a concerned voter, and the rest...

Who the hell are you to question Mr. Duncan's medical condition? This man is ending decades of public service to help get his health back on track and be with his family. Aren't those the priorties we want in a leader? Don't you have any repsect for a dedicated public servant who, this past week, was open with the public about an extremely personal situation? I have never respected him more than I did this Thursday - and I am appaled that people who have NO IDEA what was going through his mind have the NERVE to dare question him. You should all be ASHAMED.

Posted by: You have no idea. | June 24, 2006 1:31 PM | Report abuse

For "you, who have no ideas:"

Duncan is a crook. He does not suffer from any medical condition, other than pathological lying and multiple chins. This man is ending decades of public service to prepare himself for the legal battle that is about to ensue. The "clinical depression" deception is only a CYA for what's to come. Those aren't the priorities of a leader, but one of a retreating coward. And no, I have no respect for a "public servant," who has been dedicated to self-serving political gain, the lining of his own pockets and those of his special-interest contributors, at the expense of Montgomery County's citizens. I have never seen Duncan stoop as low as he did this past Thursday. And yes, I have an excellent idea of what was going through Doug's mind...

1.) "I've been notified by the Feds that a Grand Jury will subpoena me shortly (oh $#!+ !)."
2.) "How much has Abramoff told the Feds about the money he gave me?"
3.) "Will they find out about the fiscal malfeasance in my 2006 campaign?"
4.) "What other BS excuses can I use to elicit sympathy and perhaps use as a defense? (Oh yeah, I tried anti-Semitism already and that didn't work.)"
5.) "How can I cover up the fact that I have been living well beyond my means for the past decade?"
6.) "How can I avoid an IRS audit?"
7.) "Will they find the vacation home (in Barbara's name) that I paid cash for and was forced to sell about a year ago, when I heard that it had been uncovered?"
8.) "I know it's not their field of expertise, but perhaps Linowes and Blocher can defend me."
9.) "How many years will I spend in jail?"

I am appalled that people, who have NO IDEA what Duncan has been doing over the past two decades, have the NERVE to defend him. You should all be ASSHAMED.

Posted by: A Concerned Voter | June 24, 2006 3:39 PM | Report abuse

To the poster who wanted to know "who the hell" I was to question Doug Duncan's medical condition: I'm someone with an opinion, just like you. That's what these blogs are for.

Posted by: Rumormonger | June 24, 2006 4:06 PM | Report abuse

If unsubstantiated and libelous crap from anonymous sources is what these blogs are for, then The Washington Post should be ashamed of itself for putting its imprimatur on these blogs (and don't give me that line about how is completely separate and apart from The Washington Post and how could anyone think otherwise?)

Posted by: Graham | June 24, 2006 4:29 PM | Report abuse

To: Concerned Voter
What information do you have re vacation home posted today?

Posted by: MONTCO NATIVE | June 24, 2006 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Graham, if you feel the postings here are "unsubstantiated and libelous crap", why are you spending so much time here?

Posted by: Rumormonger | June 25, 2006 1:29 PM | Report abuse

By the way, have you noticed I was right about this becoming Duncan's personal version of the race card? Suddenly anyone who criticizes or questions his actions is being accused of some kind of bigotry. I don't like Duncan, but I must admit that he and Jerry Pasternak and David Weaver know how to manipulate and exploit things.

Posted by: Rumormonger | June 25, 2006 1:35 PM | Report abuse

He, david weaver, and jerry pasternak are to thank for the high quality of life so many Montgomery County residents enjoy today. They deserve better than to serve people like you - but they would never see it that way.

Posted by: You have no idea. | June 25, 2006 3:03 PM | Report abuse


Oh, yes, I know very much about Jerry Pasternak's good work for Montgomery County.
Such as, for example, his orchestrated effort following the 1990 Decenial Census to re-district the County for the sole purpose of putting Nancy Dacek [R-District 2] out of job.
Excuse me, but I respectfully submit that wasn't a matter of good government. It was a matter of political gerrymandering, pure and simple.
While I respect your right to your opinion re Mr. Pasternak, I trust you will recognize my right to my opinion that he is nothing more than a political hack.

Posted by: MONTCO NATIVE | June 25, 2006 3:28 PM | Report abuse

And don't forget what they did to Blair Ewing!

Posted by: Rumormonger | June 25, 2006 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Rumormonger, I am sorry for whatever things have gone wrong in your life to make you so angry.

Posted by: Graham | June 26, 2006 3:24 AM | Report abuse

I'm not the one who needed to resort to name-calling and profanity to express himself. Please save your sarcastic sympathy for someone who wants it. I don't.

Posted by: Rumormonger | June 26, 2006 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Just a little bit curious, what happens to Weaver and Pasternak?

Do they continue to work for Duncan until he is booted out of his office building in December?

Or do they leave early to work for O'Malley or pursue other interests.

Posted by: What happens to David Weaver and Jerry Pasternak now? | June 26, 2006 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I'd be very surprised if Pasternak and Weaver went to work for O'Malley. They will probably intensify their efforts to get Steve Silverman elected County Executive so they can keep their jobs after Duncan goes. Both Pasternak and Weaver have been advising Silverman; they wanted a safety net because they knew Duncan was a longshot to even get the nomination. When you see attack ads and distortions aimed at Ike Leggett, you'll know Weaver and Pasternak are on the job.

Posted by: Rumormonger | June 26, 2006 12:40 PM | Report abuse

When Depressed Doug brags about the renovation of downtown Silver Spring, does anyone realize that Montgomery County taxpayers paid for over 20 million dollars of state of the art projectors, etc., for the AFI Silver Theatre? Steven Speilberg, as Jerry Pasternak's brother in law, had a big hand in managing our tax dollars to provide a glorified "let's stroke ourselves as artists" theatre. There is absolutely no reason that the taxpayers of this county should be paying for state of the art digital equipment while our property and income taxes are so out of control that going to the movies is too expensive for most families. Jerry Pasternak should long ago have been ousted from the county payroll, and this was before his ties to the Abramoff scandal. Jerry has been known for a long time in political circles here as "not too bright, but very ruthless". There's a reason he never found a place working for his brother-in-law, as even the great steveo couldn't trust him. Just like ET phoned home, you'll be allowed one call from the cell once the Feds catch up with you too Jerry!!!!

Posted by: Jerry Pasternak & Steven Speilberg | June 26, 2006 1:06 PM | Report abuse

These guys have been loyal soldiers to Duncan and I think we, as a blog community, should send them a bunch of flowers.

Anyone know where these guys are going to find new jobs?

Posted by: Can someone tell me where to send flowers to Jerry Pasternak and David Weaver? | June 27, 2006 12:06 PM | Report abuse

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