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Baltimore County Democrats spent nearly $1.7M on TV ads in primary

The three leading candidates in the Democratic primary for Baltimore County executive spent a significant amount of money on television ads before the vote.

Combined, they spent nearly $1.67 million on TV ads in the Baltimore market in the weeks leading up to the June 26 primary, according to an analysis by The Baltimore Sun of contracts that were filed with the Federal Communications Commission.

Each candidate ran multiple commercials on local stations touting their campaigns and, in some cases, attacking one another.

State Sen. Jim Brochin of Cockeysville spent the most on television, about $822,000.

He was followed by County Councilwoman Vicki Almond of Reisterstown, who spent about $521,000.

Former Del. Johnny Olszewski Jr. of Dundalk spent about $325,000.

The fourth candidate on the ballot, Carney resident Kevin Marron, did not buy any TV ads. He said his only expense was $150 for business cards.

Olszewski was declared the winner of the Democratic primary by 17 votes on Saturday night after a three-day, manual recount of 87,222 ballots.

The candidates spent the most at WBAL-TV, Channel 11, buying a combined $717,000 worth of airtime, according to the contracts posted on the FCC’s website.

They spent about $547,000 with WJZ, Channel 13; $300,000 with WBFF, channel 45; $104,000 with WMAR, Channel 2; and $30,000 with WNUV, Channel 54.

The Republican primary also was contested, but the two candidates, Del. Pat McDonough and insurance commissioner Al Redmer Jr., did not buy any airtime on broadcast TV stations.

Redmer ran an ad on cable TV, mainly Fox News, that cost about $16,000, according to his campaign. McDonough had no TV ads.

Redmer won the GOP primary.

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