Delaney, Harris Propose Bipartisan Bill To Prevent Foreign Ownership Of Election Vendors

Reps. John Delaney and Andy Harris plan to introduce a measure to prevent revelations like ones in Maryland last week, when election officials revealed a key vendor had ties to a Russian oligarch. In a joint statement, the Democrat and Republican said they would introduce the Protecting Election Systems from Foreign Control Act, which would require that election systems vendors for federal elections are owned and controlled by domestic countries. (WBAL)

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July 16 // Olszewski affirmed as winner of Democratic primary for Baltimore County executive

After three days of recounting paper ballots, Johnny Olszewski Jr. was affirmed Saturday evening as the winner of the Democratic primary for Baltimore County executive. Elections officials hand-counted 87,222 ballots and determined that the former state delegate won by 17 votes over the second-place finisher, state Sen. Jim Brochin. County Councilwoman Vicki Almond remained in third, and Carney resident Kevin Marron finished fourth. (Balt. Sun)

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FBI, state probe Russian oligarch's ties to Maryland election board contractor

Maryland officials were informed by the FBI on Thursday that a key vendor used by the Board of Elections has ties to a Russian "oligarch" said to be close to President Vladimir Putin. The vendor is ByteGrid LLC, which the Board of Elections said in a statement on Friday "hosts the statewide voter registration, candidacy, and election management system, the online voter registration system, online ballot delivery system, and unofficial election night results website." (Md. Matters)

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Hogan: Voter data not breached due to Russian investor’s ties to Md. election software

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan reassured voters Sunday that their data is secure, two days after state officials announced an investigation into a Russian investor’s ties to election software that maintains part of the state’s voter registration system. “We’re fairly confident that nothing has been done,” Hogan said. He insisted voter information is still safe, less than a week after the FBI alerted Hogan and other Maryland state officials that a Russian investor, with ties to the Kremlin, finances ByteGrid LLC. (WJZ-TV)

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Dozens of Democrats are endorsing Md.’s Republican governor. Will it matter?

They are mostly older, mostly white and mostly male. Many have not held office in years. But Gov. Larry Hogan is hoping that the 40 Democrats — and counting — who have endorsed him in recent days will be a potent weapon in his campaign to defeat Democratic nominee Ben Jealous and become the first Republican governor to win a second term in Maryland since 1954. (Wash. Post)

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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. (Balt. Sun)

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Russian hacking indictment includes Twitter account @BaltimoreIsWhr

The federal indictment charging 12 Russian agents on Friday with hacking Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign includes an allegation that a Twitter account, @BaltimoreIsWhr, to invite people to join a “flash mob” and to post images using the hashtag “#BlacksAgainstHillary.” It is the latest revelation of how social media was used locally and nationally in an attempt to influence the election. (Balt. Sun)

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Bruchey meets with local Muslims in wake of social-media comments

Seeking to make amends for comments earlier this week, Hagerstown Mayor Bob Bruchey met with local Muslims on Friday to again apologize and discuss ways to improve relations in the community. "It's very appreciated that the mayor has recognized that he needed to come and talk to our congregation and explain in person, rather than from social media or the news media," said Kalim Ahmed, president of the Islamic Society of Western Maryland (ISWM). (Herald-Mail)

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