In the late days of the campaign for Governor this year, Lt. Governor Anthony Brown’s campaign was desperate for money. So desperate he took a $500,000 loan from a labor union so that he could make payroll. But he also had another surprising donor: Republican Harford County Executive candidate Barry Glassman.
The money didn’t come directly from Barry Glassman, instead, it came from a Political Action Committee ostensibly controlled by the now County Executive and his political team. The treasurer for the campaign is the same treasurer as Billy Boniface’s campaign and the campaign chairman of the Harford Leadership Slate. The Deer Creek PAC held a fundraiser called Buses and Bluegrass, surprisingly there wasn’t a single sign presented at the fundraiser that indicated it was for the Deer Creek PAC, instead the backdrop was a Barry Glassman for County Executive banner.
The Deer Creek PAC paid for campaign expenses for Glassman Campaign Manager Mike Mason, Glassman appointee Amber Shrodes appears to have planned the PAC’s fundraiser. It paid for personalized water bottles for a fair, I’m guessing the names on those water bottles wasn’t “Deer Creek PAC.” It paid for Poetri Deal to go to what was possibly the Maryland Association of Counties convention.
Who is Poetri Deal? She was the only paid staffer that the Glassman campaign had (Mike Mason and Dane Meserve received bonuses after the election), but the Glassman campaign wasn’t her only benefactor. While she was working for Barry, she split her time with another high profile campaign, you guessed it: Anthony Brown for Governor. Why did Barry hire an Anthony Brown staffer to work on his campaign? Is it too difficult to find Republicans in Harford County that you need to get Democrats? Did he want a skill that only a Coppin State graduate could provide?
Another beneficiary of the Deer Creek PAC largess, Democrat Mary Ann Lisanti who just won a seat in the Maryland House of Delegates, and has the distinction of being the only Democrat elected in Harford County. To give the conspiracy theorists some fun, the check was written the same day David Craig vetoed the bill to raise the next County Executive’s salary.
Here’s where Barry Glassman may get in a little bit of trouble, you see those expenses up there that paid for the campaign manager to get a computer, or for the staffer to attend MACO, or for the water bottles for the fair, and those are probably expenses related directly to the Glassman campaign. The Glassman campaign should have identified these as in-kind contributions to the campaign, especially considering that the Deer Creek PAC isn’t on the Harford Leadership Slate with Glassman and Boniface.
I wonder if Larry Hogan realized this before speaking at Barry Glassman’s inauguration.