Harford County, as well as the state, approved the four other state ballot questions: Questions 1 and 2, requiring judges for the Prince George's and Baltimore County so-called "Orphan's Court," which oversees estate cases, to be admitted to the Maryland Bar; Question 3, which states lawmakers, such as a mayors or county council members, will be immediately removed from office after being found guilty of a felony; and Question 5, which upholds the state law that redrew Maryland's congressional districts.
County charter amendments
All seven amendments to the Harford County charter were approved, most by wide margins.
The only measure that was relatively close was Question B, allowing county council members to apply for a position with Harford County Government as soon as they leave office, eliminating the long-required two-year waiting period. It passed by a 53-47 percent margin.
Other county charter amendments to be approved are: changing the definition of a pending zoning case for the board of appeals to allow council members, who also serve as the board, to discuss matters with the public that could potentially become a zoning matter; extending the county executive's deadline to submit the annual budget to the council to April 15 after the state budget has been finalized; those filling the vacancy of the county executive before the end of a term will be of the same political party as the immediately preceding county executive; public notices will be required to be posted in one newspaper widely circulated in Harford County and on an official website, such as Harford County Government; expanding the county's redistricting commission to represent more political parties; and changing the list of personnel who can be fired at will to be consistent with the pay and classification plan.
Before 9 p.m. Tuesday at the Dark Horse Saloon in Bel Air the mood was hopeful at the Republican Central Committee's party.
Hosted by Del. Donna Stifler and Sen. J.B. Jennings, the party drew about 60 to 70 attendees, all anxiously watching the results come trickling in on the newscasts.
Harford County Councilman Joe Woods was celebrating with a small group of people.
"It's been a long day going to all the polls," he said. Woods goes to as many polling places as possible every election.
He was "really impressed" with the turnout, adding that the line at Fallston High School was out the door and around the building, taking voters up to 30 minutes to reach the actual machines.
"Everybody was talking about Romney, even the Democrats," Woods said about his time at the polling locations. "Across all the polls, the amount of people just mad at Obama is unbelievable."
Woods voted for Romney because "defense is critical to us," he said. "Our community relies on APG."
He feels the military won't be as strong with Obama as president for a second term and that could prove to be detrimental with another base realignment expected for Harford County in the next few years.
"That's what's going to make Harford County stronger," Woods said.
Just caddy-corner across Main Street the Democratic Central Committee was holding its party at headquarters.
Albeit a smaller crowd, the 15-20 people huddled around a TV and eating were incredibly enthusiastic, cheering when a state was projected to go in Obama's favor and booing when it was projected for Romney.
Committee chairperson Wendy Sawyer commented on the "remarkable turnout of volunteers" that night, calling it "so refreshing and rewarding."
Sawyer voted in Edgewood as she has done for the past 40 years.
"I never had to wait to vote before," she said. At 7 a.m. right as the polls opened, 30 people were waiting in line.