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Attention, Sen. Pugh: The state runs elections

When the Baltimore City Elections Board sent out sample ballots with the wrong primary date, Catherine Pugh pointed a finger at City Hall.

Maybe that's to be expected from a candidate for mayor. Unless the candidate also is a state senator, who should know the state runs elections, not the city.

"State Senator Catherine Pugh called on the city administration to take action immediately to correct their mistake on the sample ballot," reads a news release from her campaign.

“I’m calling on the city to take action immediately to educate voters on the correct primary date.  The most important right any citizen has is their right to vote and I’m disappointed that the Board of Elections was so ridiculously careless,” said the ridiculously careless state senator.

It's not hard for ordinary citizens to mistake the Baltimore City Elections Board for a city entity. Look the board up online and you'll find a page on the city government website. Visit its offices and you'll find yourself in the Benton Building, home to many a city agency. Full disclosure: The Sun's story on the ballot goof began, "The city mailed sample ballots out this week ... "

But the Baltimore City Elections Board is, in fact, a state board, whose members are appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the none other than the state Senate, whose members include Pugh.

There's certainly nothing wrong with calling on the city, as Pugh does, to help the Elections Board get the word out about the error. But if City Hall follows her suggestion to educate voters, it might start with the senator.

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