It's nearly two years until Baltimore County voters pick their next county executive, but Democrats and Republicans are already preparing for a race that both parties expect to be highly competitive.
Democrats, who have held the office since 1994, are eager to defend their turf. Three prominent officials — County Council Chairwoman Vicki Almond, state Sen. Jim Brochin and former state Del. John Olszewski Jr. — say they are considering a run to lead the state's third-largest county.
"We want to keep the momentum going," said Tara Ebersole, chairwoman of the Baltimore County Democratic Central Committee.
But Republicans, encouraged by the election of GOP Gov....