Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Buying a Board of Education Seat: The Sezin Palmer Edition

Going through the latest campaign finance report, it appears as though Sezin Palmer and her deep-pocketed donors are attempting to purchase a Howard County Board of Education seat (District 4).

Thus far, she has raised $25,930, which is quite a healthy sum for such a local race.  Most disturbingly, more than two out of five of those dollars (43%) have come from just six donors, including one PAC (CAPA-PAC) that has donated $6,000 to her campaign.  Combine their $6,000 with five other donors who have each sent at least $1,000 to the Palmer effort, and that works out to $11,100 out of $25,930 in total receipts, not even including the “other receipts and in-kind contributions.”

Notable contributors include:

One Thomas Harriman who hails from Santa Barbara, California.  He sent her campaign $1,000 on February 17, 2020. 

Timothy Dull, gave her $1,000 on February 12, 2020 (another Dull in the same household contributed $100 on January 8, but that is not included in $11,100 figure).  Tim Dull also contributed to current GOP congressional candidate Liz Matory as well as the Republican presidential campaigns of Mitt Romney in 2011 and John McCain in 2007.

[Other “notables” whose contributions are not included in the aforementioned $11,100 are current County Council person from District 5, Republican David Yungmann.  Mr. Yungmann also helped the Board of Education campaigns of Christina Delmont Small and Vicky Cutroneo (both current BoE members).  He was their campaign Treasurer in 2016.  The Palmer campaign also accepted money from Larry Pretlow, current Board of Education candidate in District 2).]

Beyond the conservative ideology held by some/most of these donors, anyone concerned about the aggregation of political and economic power at the national, state, and local levels should be alarmed at the sizable contributions that have managed to find their way into the Palmer campaign coffers...and what they might expect for their "generous" support.

Let Sezin Palmer and her well-heeled donors know: our public schools are not up for sale.

** Correction: the first iterations of this post incorrectly identified Dr. Wu as being on the board of directors of the CAPA PAC (which is also based in Howard County).  He is, in fact, on the Board of Directors of CAPA - Howard County, which is a different organization.  For that error, I apologize to Dr. Wu.

In solidarity.


  1. All this kind of makes you long for the days when Dyer, Vallaincourt and Meshkin were voting for what was good for the kids and the other 4 were blocking their every move (who knows why?) and causing Dyer to throw wild temper tantrums.

  2. When Yungmann gets involved, it gets very smarmy and conservatively sticky. You can bet money on that.