Republican state lawmakers are proposing the idea of Western Maryland leaving the state of Maryland and becoming part of West Virginia.
From Pamela Wood and Bryn Stole of the Baltimore Sun:
The secessionist cadre — a group of five state legislators from Garrett, Allegany and Washington counties — sent a pair of letters to top West Virginia officials asking whether they might annex their westernmost piece of the panhandle and make Mountain Maryland a permanent part of the Mountain State.
Abandoning Maryland for West Virginia would be a legally complicated, politically arduous process requiring the blessing of lawmakers in both state capitals as well as the U.S. Congress. The odds, to put it generously, are stacked heavily against it.
I’ve been a resident of Washington County since I moved to Maryland in 1994. I live in Hagerstown, the largest city in Washington County. Hagerstown is only a few miles from the Maryland-West Virginia state line. I can say in all honesty that I don’t think life would be much different if Hagerstown was a city in West Virginia instead of a city in Maryland. I would pay less in taxes and it would be a lot easier to purchase and own a rifle or a shotgun, but that’s about it.
Washington County is already very much like West Virginia. People here are generally conservative. In the 2020 Presidential election, 59.3% of Washington County residents voted for Donald Trump. I voted for Hunter Biden’s father. I’m not a Republican, but I’m not a Democrat either. I’m registered as “Unaffiliated.”
I still vote for Democrats, not because I agree with everything to they stand for, but because I find them to be less terrible of the alternative.
I blame gerrymandering
I think the reason Republican state lawmakers want Western Maryland to leave Maryland is because of the weapons-grade gerrymandering that goes on here. Maryland has some of the worst gerrymandering in the nation.
I cringe every time someone on the left talks about the sanctity of voting rights or the importance of passing the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2021 (H.R. 4). If Democrats honestly valued voting rights, they wouldn’t deny so many people in Maryland the right to the representation of their choosing. Democrats seem to only be in favor of voting rights when it comes to voting for them. And I say this as someone who never votes for the Republican.
The Maryland Terrapins are stupid
The more I think about it, the best part of getting absorbed into West Virginia is not having to watch Maryland football games. I hate the Maryland Terrapins. Even though the team perpetually sucks, they wear special obnoxious looking uniforms on a regular basis. The University of Maryland football team seems to care more about their special outfits than the quality of their play. They used to be in the ACC. The basketball team got to play North Carolina and Duke twice a year. The Men’s Basketball team won the NCAA Tournament in 2002 while in the ACC. Then to improve the football team’s recruiting, the University of Maryland switched to the Big Ten conference in 2012.
I would welcome living in West Virginia Mountaineers county.