Kittleman said he was feeling energized as summer begins. He said internal polls had him leading by four points, and "we feel like our fundraising is doing well."

Now that the primaries are past, he said, Republican Party candidates could unify and move forward.

"I know who will be on the ticket with me in District 1, 2 and 5," he said. "I'm excited about that."

He said he'd campaign, for the most part, in the same way as he always has.

"I've run a lot of races in the past, since 1998, and we're going to continue to do what we always have done," he said. "We're going to go to every corner of the county and meet as many people as we can possibly meet."

He said he didn't think Ulman's candidacy would have a ripple effect on the county executive race.

"Howard County has a long reputation of looking at the person, not the party," he said. "I think [the race] is going to be dependent upon the two candidates, and who people think they can trust as a leader for the next four years."

For Watson and Kittleman, one thing's for certain: They will be out in full force on the Fourth of July. This year, parades will be thinner without primary candidates in the mix.

"That's a really fun day in Howard County, and our campaign and volunteers will be out in full force," Watson said.

Kittleman said he planned to walk with the Precision Lawn Chair Marching Dads — a group of boxer-clad fathers who have made it a tradition to perform lawn-chair tricks in the River Hill Fourth of July Parade — as he has in previous years.

"I'm looking forward to that, it's one of the things I enjoy the most every year," he said. "I'm not going to change just because I'm a candidate."