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Vote in northwest Baltimore County mirrored national breakdown

Barry Rascovar
Barry Rascovar

Before we leave the Nov. 8 election as a distant memory, it is worth taking a moment to see how northwest Baltimore County voters reacted to the Donald Trump-Hillary Clinton race for president.

Most of the area's polling places registered large victories for the Democratic nominee.

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For instance at Deer Park Elementary, Clinton won a lopsided 86 percent to 9 percent victory, reflecting that community's large African-American population.

A similar pattern was seen at New Town Elementary in Owings Mills, where voters went for Clinton, 73 percent to 19 percent.

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At St. Thomas Church on St. Thomas Lane near Reisterstown Road in Owings Mills, Clinton got the nod by 72 percent to 22 percent.

The two polling places at Owings Mills High School gave Clinton nearly 70 percent of their vote.

At Har Sinai Congregation, just off Greenspring and Walnut avenues, Clinton posted a 55 percent to 38 percent win.

The Glyndon Elementary School polling place also went heavily for Clinton over Trump, 59 percent to 33 percent.

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Meanwhile, in Reisterstown, the polling place at Franklin Elementary School gave Clinton 62 percent to Trump's 33 percent; at Reisterstown Elementary School, it was Clinton 58 percent, Trump 33 percent.

In all these locations, voters also heavily favored Democrat Chris Van Hollen over Republican Kathy Szeliga to replace longtime icon Barbara Mikulski in the U.S. Senate.

The one exception to this heavy Democratic tilt occurred at Pikesville High School on Smith Avenue — in the heart of the region's Orthodox Jewish community. Voters there favored Trump, 51 percent to 40 percent; in the Senate race, they favored Szeliga over Van Hollen, 51 percent to 47 percent.

Voters at this polling place also favored Republican Mark Plaster over Democrat John Sarbanes for Congress — one of the few polling places to do so.

The heavy Republican tilt of this polling place — and the community surrounding it — isn't surprising. Four years ago, voters there favored Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney over President Obama by a 61 percent to 38 percent margin.

Highly observant Orthodox Jews believe in maintaining religious and lifestyle traditions. They have very conservative views on social issues, much in line with the Republican Party.

The same pattern took place in 2014 when this polling place voted in the governor's election for Republican Larry Hogan by more than a 2-1 margin (50 percent to 23 percent). Clearly, the Orthodox Jewish community surrounding Pikesville High School is prime GOP territory.

Want to know the early-voting results in our section of the county?

At the Reisterstown Senior Center at Hannah More, early voting provided a landslide for Clinton (71 percent to 25 percent) and Van Hollen (72 percent to 26 percent).

But at the rural Maryland Agriculture and Farm Park on Shawan Road in Hunt Valley, early voting showed a nip-and-tuck race between Trump and Clinton — similar to what happened in the nation's "battleground states." Clinton ended up winning the early vote there by a slim 51 percent to 49 percent; Van Hollen won by just 50 percent to 48 percent.

Throughout the nation, Trump did exceptionally well in rural and outer suburban communities, while Clinton's strength came overwhelmingly from urban centers and densely populated suburbs of major cities. That helps explain the differing results in those two Baltimore County early-voting sites.

Northwestern and western Baltimore County have become pivotal districts for countywide and statewide elections. While Clinton's heavy popularity in our communities wasn't seen in the national outcome, it proved highly reflective of the rest of the state on Nov. 8.

Barry Rascovar's blog is www.politicalmaryland.com. He can be reached at brascovar@hotmail.com.

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