Political football

December 31, 2003|by ANDREW SCHOTZ and LAURA ERNDE

When it comes to root, root, rooting for the home team - especially in a big game - political figures enjoy placing friendly wagers while poking some good-natured fun at their opposite number. The Gator Bowl has become no different as the state's top leaders took time out to post personal challenges for Thursday's Maryland vs. West Virginia game.

"Gov. Wise is a friend and former colleague in the House of Representatives. We will have a bet. There are lots of things he wants from Maryland. Obviously, we have a lot of good things here. We're trying to figure out what we want from the state of West Virginia."

- Maryland Gov. Robert Ehrlich Jr.

Crabs is a possible bet. "If they can't find anything they'd want from West Virginia, that's OK, because they'll be eating crow anyway."

- West Virginia Gov. Bob Wise

"I think clearly we're the better team. I think we definitely will win. In fact, I'll challenge the other delegate to dinner. He's more than welcome to buy my dinner. And if West Virginia, by some miracle, wins, I'll buy his dinner."


- Maryland Del. John P. Donoghue


"Del. Donoghue is welcome, in the off chance Maryland should win this game, to dine, at my expense, at any restaurant in Jefferson County. ... If, however, as I suspect West Virginia wins, I wish to select the Washington County restaurant at which he should treat me ... Rococco on the Square in downtown Hagerstown. And so confident am I that West Virginia will win ... I shall beat feet to Hagerstown for a Rococco menu to secure on my kitchen wall."

- West Virginia

Del. John Doyle


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