The last two elections, the gubernatorial election in 2014, and the mayoral election in 2011, show a disturbing trend – historically low voter turnout. As one of Baltimore’s biggest cheerleaders, I am not willing to sit on the sidelines any longer…
I am issuing a challenge to all Baltimore City companies to join me in educating and encouraging our teams to vote.
There is too much at stake for our businesses, our employees and our city to sit by and let a fraction of the voting population direct the future of our city and state without our input. There are important issues like crime, education, taxes and how the city is managed that are crucial to our future.
In the last mayoral primary held in 2011, 23 percent of Baltimore City’s registered voters cast ballots, according to Baltimore City Elections Board. The results marked the lowest voter turnout in Baltimore City history.
In the last gubernatorial election in 2014, just 35 percent of Baltimore City residents voted representing the lowest turnout in the state when compared to 23 counties, according to data from the Maryland Board of Elections.
These are appallingly low numbers. These results demonstrate that a few hundred votes may decide the fate of our city. In the 2011 election Rawlings-Blake won by a landslide, but collected just 38,829 votes out of roughly 300,000 registered voters in Baltimore City.
The goal is simple: educate folks in a non-partisan way on how to register to vote, understand important deadlines and dates, and how the closed primary system works. Baltimore City is one of the four jurisdictions in Maryland where Democrats can only vote for Democrats and Republicans for Republicans in the primary election. Historically, the Democratic primary winner in April becomes the de-facto Mayor. Independents are the largest new group of registrants in the city and some are not even aware that their vote doesn’t count.
We are working on a website (http://BmoreVot.es) and other materials for a formal launch this fall, but we need your help to drive Baltimore forward. If you are interested in getting involved and helping our community have a larger say in city policies, shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or simply reply and I will keep you informed on an upcoming kick off meeting.
Founder & CEO