Campaign Notes

June 07, 1998

A sign outside the Grille at Park Circle welcomed Gov. Parris N. Glendening Sunday afternoon: "Happy Birthday Govenor Glendening."

Noting the misspelling, Glendening joked: "While I appreciate the sign, it does emphasize the continuing need for education."

The birthday party was one of five bashes that Glendening supporters plan around the state. Glendening turns 56 on Thursday.

Glendening used the occasion to rally about 70 Democratic elected officials and supporters. He said big-money politics and 30-second television spots have not replaced traditional campaigning.

"I hope no one is misled by that. You win elections, if you will, in the trenches," he said.

Predicting a clear win, Glendening took a few shots at his two chief rivals, neither of whom he mentioned by name.

In a reference to Harford County Executive Eileen M. Rehrmann, who is challenging him for the Democratic nomination, Glendening reiterated his longtime opposition to slot machines.


"I think that's wrong. I do not think we ought to go down that path," he said.

Glendening also criticized the "extremist agenda" of the likely Republican nominee, Ellen R. Sauerbrey, who he said wants to "raid the public education system" with her support of vouchers.

"They're trying to take this person and package her and make her seem soft," he said.

Delegate grades fellow legislators

In Leon Billings' view, Del. Sue Hecht, D-Frederick/Washington, scores 61 percent.

Del. Louise V. Snodgrass, R-Frederick/Washington, scores 11 percent.

And the rest of the Washington County delegation to the Maryland House of Delegates falls in between in the world according to Billings.

Billings, a liberal Democratic delegate from Montgomery County, rated his colleagues on 19 votes during this year's legislative session.

Billings, who sent the list to other legislators about a month after the session ended, said he hopes to highlight the rightward drift of the Democratic leadership.

The 14 members of the leadership team voted Billings' way 52.4 percent of the time, compared with an average of 66.9 percent for Democrats as a whole.

"We need to move the leadership of the House of Delegates more to the center of the Democratic Party Hopefully, the leadership will get the message," he said. "Really, the ball's in their court."

House Speaker Casper R. Taylor Jr., D-Allegany, who scored a 37 percent, dismissed the impact of the list.

"That's Leon's opinion. He's entitled to it. I obviously don't agree with it and I don't think many members do," he said. "It doesn't mean anything to anyone but Leon Billings. We can all make up our own scorecards."

The rest of the Washington County delegation rated as follows: Democrats D. Bruce Poole, 39 percent, and John P. Donoghue, 35 percent; and Republicans J. Anita Stup, 32 percent, and Robert A. McKee, 16 percent.

Schoenke plans advertising blitz

Democrat Ray Schoenke announced he will spend more than $1 million on television advertising next month in his bid to become Maryland's next governor.

Though the advertising will be targeted in the voter-rich metropolitan markets, the commercials will reach more than 90 percent of the state's voters, according to a Schoenke news release.

Schoenke, a Montgomery County millionaire who is personally financing much of his campaign, is considered by many political observers as a longshot candidate to beat Glendening and Rehrmann in the Sept. 15 primary election.

But Schoenke said his private business success and personal commitment give him an edge in the campaign.

"Eileen is not drawing large numbers of contributors and is being forced to make commitment to special interests in order to raise what she can for her campaign. The governor, on the other hand, has had the 'for sale' sign out for years," he said.

Stopping the dead?

An online interview hosted by Washington Post columnist Bob Levey with Sauerbrey last week included this exchange from a reader in Rockville, Md.

Rockville, Md: "What do you plan to do to stop Glendening's 'get out the dead' vote this year?"

Sauerbrey: "We're going to do our best to make sure no dead person gets to vote more than once."

Sauerbrey accused the Glendening campaign of voter fraud after her narrow loss in 1994.

Glendening campaign spokesman Peter Hamm dismissed the remark last week.

"It's clever. It's funny," he said. "She lost her challenge. She lost her lawsuit."

Fund-raisers set for this weekend

Two Frederick County politicians have planned fund-raisers for this weekend for different purposes.

Richard L. Stup, a Democrat who is running for a delegate seat in District 3, will hold a traditional bull roast from 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Frederick Fairgrounds.

Invited guests include state cabinet members and leaders in the General Assembly.

Timothy D. McCown, who is seeking the Democratic nomination to Congress, said he will hold a fund-raiser from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday at Gathland State Park to raise money for Rotorex workers who have been locked out since September.

"It's got nothing to do with my campaign," he said.

- Brendan Kirby and Guy Fletcher

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