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Letter: Candidate — make an informed choice for judge

My name is Maria Oesterreicher and I am running for Circuit Court Judge. The incumbent has told you that he is the only qualified candidate, based solely on his appointment. But it's what he isn't saying that is most revealing. I was so qualified that all three Circuit Court judges wrote letters to the judicial nominating commission lauding my excellent qualifications and temperament and recommending me for the very seat to which Titus was appointed; a fact he'd prefer remain private.

Titus has alleged that he doesn't feel right accepting donations from people who may appear before him. He has touted the endorsement of the local Bar Association, but hasn't told you that when given the opportunity to permit the bar association to hold a secret vote on his own motion to endorse him, he objected, and forced the very attorneys who must appear in front of him to vote verbally, in his presence; an endorsement by intimidation of sorts. Why was no one else willing to make the motion on his behalf? Why did he object to a secret ballot? What is he afraid of? He's afraid you'll discover that I am highly qualified, and that he was appointed based on who he knows and not what he knows.

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A letter to the editor written on Titus' behalf suggested that voters should be troubled by anyone seeking this office who is accepting donations. I have dedicated my career to public service. I did not engage in the private practice of transactional law with which to amass a war chest to self-fund my campaign. The suggestion that voters should be skeptical of the source of donations is nothing more than fear-mongering. Campaign donations are public record. Voters may recall the judicial campaign of 2014 in which the sitting judge accepted donations. Is Titus suggesting that judge is less capable now of upholding his judicial oath because of those donations?

I know the voters of Carroll County to be thoughtful, interested voters. Voters who will choose to do their own research and not substitute the opinions of a political commission for their own. Now is your opportunity to have a voice in who sits on your circuit court. Please make it an informed choice. Carroll County deserves the best qualified candidate, not the most politically connected. Please read more about my qualifications and this historic election on my website MariaForCircuitCourt.com

Maria Oesterreicher

Eldersburg

The writer is a candidate for judge of the Circuit Court of Carroll County.

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