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Jim Mathias has earned your vote
commentary by Joe Reynolds

I'm a conservative. I am a Republican. How conservative? Well, I voted for Jack Kennedy for president, but he was the last Democrat to receive my vote in a presidential election. I even voted for Barry Goldwater. My vote went to Donald Trump in the last election.

I'm voting for Jim Mathias to remain my Maryland State Senator on November 6. If you live in Ocean Pines or elsewhere in this area of the Eastern Shore, you should seriously consider voting for Jim Mathias as well, regardless of whether you are a Democrat, Republican or Independent.

Mathias is a moderate member of the Maryland legislature, someone with the proven ability to work across party lines for the benefit of all. Replacing a conservative, moderate Democrat like Jim Mathias with a conservative Republican in a Democrat-controlled legislature may make blind Republican party loyalists feel good, but will accomplish nothing to benefit the people in this part of the Eastern Shore. If that happens, we the people will have less influence in Annapolis.

When it comes to voters in Ocean Pines there are about 300,000 important reasons why Jim Mathias deserves your vote. When county politicians and the OPA Board of Directors deserted us a few years ago, Jim Mathias went to bat for Ocean Pines by sponsoring a bill in the Maryland legislature to mandate Ocean Pines Association (OPA) receive 10% of the total slots impact funds coming to Worcester County. The bill passed and OPA now receives over $300,000 a year as a direct result.

Mathias did this at the request of a diverse and non-partisan group of Ocean Pines residents, ignoring the local political powers that wanted Worcester County to receive all the money and thus forcing OPA to come begging to the County Commissioners every year with specific, proven impacts due to the slots operation.

Inexplicably, even the OPA Board of Directors wanted the county to receive all the money and make OPA a yearly beggar at the County for impact funds.

Jim Mathias listened to all sides. In the end he sided with the people of Ocean Pines, not the local politicians who wanted to control the purse strings and thus increase their own power and importance.

Another local issue was Mathias' success in obtaining legislation to stop hydraulic clam dredging in the coastal bays. As an avid fisherman, I saw firsthand, on the water, the devasting muddy mess this practice caused in our Coastal Bays every Fall. Again, Mathias sided with the people in this area, not the special interest groups intent on continuing this extremely environmentally harmful method of commercial clam harvesting. Inexplicably, his opponent in the current election supported the renewal of some aspects of the damaging commercial clam dredging. Fortunately, the foolish legislation never passed.

Jim Mathias is not endorsed by Republican Governor Larry Hogan, but Mathias was the sponsor or co-sponsor of 81 pieces of legislation passed by the legislature and signed into law by Republican Governor Hogan this year. Mathias is involved in the process. Mathias' Republican competitor for the Senate seat was the sponsor or co-sponsor of only 23 bills Republican Governor Hogan signed into law.

Jim Mathias' slogan is "Always Working For You." The vast array of Mathias-sponsored or co-sponsored legislation signed into law by a Republican governor this year is tangible proof he lives up to it every day.

The list of Mathias' legislative successes is extensive and bipartisan. However, let's end with this one - Jim Mathias was the primary Senate sponsor of legislation passed in 2017 requiring the POW/MIA flag to be flown on the grounds of Maryland State buildings whenever the flag of the United States is flown.

Keep Jim Mathias working for you. Keep Jim Mathias working for all of us.

Vote for Jim Mathias. He earned your vote. He deserves your vote.

Uploaded: 11/1/2018