— CUMBERLAND — The two Republicans seeking the District 1C seat in the Maryland General Assembly agree on most of the issues, but have subtle differences in approach and differences in their personal backgrounds.
Mike McKay has held office as an Allegany County commissioner and advocate for his county and other rural counties in the past four years. Givens has been an unpaid lobbyist for a fivecounty sportsman’s coalition for a dozen years during the legislative sessions in Annapolis.
“Maryland is being viewed more and more as being less than friendly to businesses, taxpayers, drivers, sportsmen, families, farmers, well, it seems
everyone ... this must stop,” McKay has said. McKay has deplored recent tax increases enacted by the legislature at the request of Gov. Martin O’Malley and called for a change in thinking.
“My solutions will be based on the conservative principles of self-reliance, faith in the individual, trust in the family and accountability in government,” McKay said.
McKay is a resident of Cumberland, while Ray Givens is a resident of Hancock. McKay runs a dry cleaning business in addition to his office. Givens is a Marine veteran and former sheriff’s deputy and correctional officer. Givens has been active in many sportsmen’s organizations.
In his campaign literature, Givens said he believes in “smaller government, lower taxes, individual rights for all citizens and less beauracratic regulations.” Givens also points out he’s a strong believer in gun rights and the Second Amendment. McKay also has said he supports the Second Amendment.
McKay recently said one of his goals will be to try to convince state government to interfere less in the doings of rural parts of Maryland and improve the business climate in the state.
McKay said he wanted to promote “faith, health, happiness and prosperity for our families.” Givens said at a recent candidates forum he was the only candidate who had served his country in the armed forces.