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Mooney manager caught trying to spy on opponent

May 20, 2002|BY LAURA ERNDE

Sen. Alex Mooney's campaign manager got caught last week trying to spy on the competition.

Erin DeLullo sent an e-mail to one of Del. Sue Hecht's campaign volunteers asking how she could help. Although she tried to disguise her identity and signed her name "Marie Acly," the e-mail revealed her to be the true sender.

While DeLullo did not return a Herald-Mail phone call seeking comment, she fessed up to the stunt in a published report.

"If she does want to change parties and candidates, we'll take her," said Hecht campaign manager Sue Tuckwell.

Democrat Donald DeArmon is standing by his earlier criticism of U.S. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, R-Md., for taking credit for a new $16 million barracks complex at Fort Detrick, Md.

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While we reported two weeks ago that DeArmon's slap at Bartlett was off base because the Armed Services Committee had approved the expense, DeArmon further explained that Bartlett took credit prematurely.

The committee has to give a second approval and then the expense has to be OK'd by the full House and Senate as well as President Bush. Most budget items don't get final approval until the fall, said DeArmon, who has worked on Capitol Hill for 25 years.

Bartlett's press release said he had "secured" the money.

"I think it's misleading. He's got this pattern of saying things that don't comport with his record," DeArmon said.

Two candidates so far have tapped into the feel-good patriotism aroused by Sept. 11 hijack victim Todd Beamer's famous last words.

When LeRoy E. Myers Jr. of Clear Spring announced his candidacy for House of Delegates last month, he ended his speech by saying, "Let's Roll." He also passed out bumper stickers sporting the phrase.

Fellow Republican Vikki Nelson is also using the phrase on a newsletter she sends to her supporters.

Myers and Nelson, along with William J. Wivell, are vying for the Republican nomination in District 2A.

One Democrat, Peter E. Perini Sr., has filed so far.

Since most of the contested races in Washington County's Sept. 10 primary are shaping up to be Republican battles, some Democratic voters might want to consider switching parties.

June 17 is the deadline for changing party affiliation, said Washington County Election Board Director Dorothy Kaetzel.

After the primary, there's a short lockout period, but then voters can switch back to their original party in time for the Nov. 5 general election, she said.

Legislative district boundaries weren't the only things to change this election cycle. The phone number and address of the Washington County Election Board have changed, too.

Some voters have been frustrated when they try to call the old phone number and can't get through, said Election Board Director Dorothy Kaetzel.

The new number is 420-313-2050. The address is 35 W. Washington St., Hagerstown, MD 21740.

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