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Candidate criticizes Bartlett

June 17, 2004|by TARA REILLY

tarar@herald-mail.com

A candidate running against U.S. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett on Wednesday called the congressman a World War II draft dodger who acts as a "rubber stamp" for the Bush administration.

Democrat Kenneth Bosley, who is Bartlett's opponent in the 6th District race, made the comments at a South County Democratic Club picnic at Shafer Memorial Park in Boonsboro.

Bartlett, R-Md., is seeking his seventh term in Congress.

"The opponent I'm (running against) is a guy that's a draft dodger," Bosley told the crowd of about 100 people. "He was eligible to serve in WWII but never served."

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Bosley, a retired U.S. Air Force officer, said he, on the other hand, was sent overseas to a combat area.

Bosley, who wore a camouflage cap, justified his comments by saying that not many people know Bartlett or his history.

A representative at Bartlett's office referred calls to Bartlett's spokeswoman, Lisa Wright. Wright did not return phone calls placed to the numbers provided by the representative Wednesday night.

Bosley called Bartlett a supporter of big business and flawed Bush administration policies.

"I feel that us Democrats can win in the election and get rid of Bartlett, who has never done anything in Congress," said Bosley, a dairy farmer from Sparks in Baltimore County.

Bosley wasn't the only one taking shots at Republicans Wednesday night.

Ken Wade, a coordinator of the South County Democratic Club, joked that Republicans had prayed in church for rain to ruin the annual picnic.

"But this year they didn't pray hard enough, or they didn't pay the preacher enough," Wade said.

Wade said he could remember when the price of gasoline was 89 cents a gallon.

"I think Bill Clinton was the president at that time," Wade said.

"Let me just say the Republicans better keep praying, because they're going to need all the help they can get," Washington County Treasurer Todd Hershey said.

Wade said the South County Democratic Club picnic isn't a fund-raiser; it is an annual family-oriented gathering on the third Wednesday in June.

The club has about 300 members.

Bosley said he's planning to attend every picnic held by the Democratic clubs in the 6th District. The district includes Washington County and all or part of seven other counties.

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