By Adam Pagnucco.
Two ballots were handed out today announcing county-level endorsements by the Washington Post.
The first one shows all of the Post’s endorsements for County Executive, County Council and Board of Education. It has an authority line from David Blair’s campaign. We hear that several other Post-endorsed campaigns distributed it in addition to Blair’s people. The presence of an authority line makes it legal and the fact that it included all the county Post endorsements, not just some, is fair.
The second one shows just four of the Post’s endorsements: County Executive (Blair), Council At-Large (Evan Glass and Marilyn Balcombe) and Council District 1 (Andrew Friedson). The other two Council At-Large Post endorsees (incumbent Hans Riemer and Gabe Albornoz) do not appear. It has no visible authority line. This particular one was distributed in Bethesda but we have no idea how many were handed out. If it indeed lacks an authority line, this ballot violated state election law. It was also misleading because it only partially lists the Council At-Large endorsements. No campaign has admitted responsibility for this flyer.
We have not seen a “Washington Post Ballot” in the past. But if it continues, and if campaigns can agree on funding it, it could conceivably be turned into an alternative to the Apple Ballot.