No picnic for candidate Landers at Proven Team cookout
Jody Landers was feeling rejected this week after the chilly rebuff he got from the Proven Democratic Team at its weekend picnic for precinct workers and their political friends.
The 3rd District councilmen, who's running for the comptroller's job being vacated by the retiring Hyman Pressman, was getting distinctly unfriendly vibes when he arrived at Roy Staten's Shore on Miller's Island Road, where the old line East Baltimore organization held its annual cookout.
Stalwart gate-keepers kept Landers waiting until State Sen. American Joe Miedusiewski, the organization's leader, gave him the OK.
American Joe said Landers could join the party but that he couldn't pass out any campaign literature.
Landers found himself chagrined to see posters for his opponent Jacqueline F. McLean tacked to every tree and post, just below the blue and white posters for the Proven Team's City Council candidates in the 1st District, Mimi DiPietro, Joe Ratajczak and John Schaefer.
Landers felt hurt. He said he thought American Joe and his troops were not yet committed to any comptroller candidate.
McLean, a 2nd District councilwoman, had been at the shore earlier with her aides, handing out literature and pinning buttons on Proven Team picnickers. She even got a plug on the WJRO Polka Jamboree, which was broadcast live from the Back River shore.
American Joe said he's "leaning toward Jackie McLean."
"We haven't made a formal decision," he said. "But I'm going to recommend to the board that we endorse Jackie."
Landers shouldn't have been surprised. He's supporting two City Council candidates in the First, Nick D'Adamo, of Shocket's, and Perry Sfikas, who are running against the Proven Team's slate. East Baltimore politics ain't no picnic even at the shore.
Is the force with her?
Mary Conaway, a candidate in the comptroller's race, wants to expand the role of the city's auxiliary police force.
Auxiliary police are volunteers who march in parades and participate in other ceremonies. Conaway wants to use the auxiliary police to aid crossing guards and to protect elderly citizens from street crime. She also wants the auxiliary police to provide support for foot patrolmen. Conaway says the auxiliary police should receive training from the police department along with two-way radios to report crimes.
Conaway is an ordained Methodist minister who serves as the city's register of wills. She has been endorsed by leading black church groups in the city.
The comptroller oversees the city auditors and the real estate department. The comptroller also sits on the Board of Estimates, the body that awards city contracts and holds the city's purse strings.
Conaway has been criticized by opponent Jacqueline F. McLean for raising issues that have nothing to with the comptroller's office.
Life at the top
Kurt L. Schmoke has discovered that life can be tough when you're the mayor. "One thing about this job, it's kind of like the Janet Jackson song: 'What Have You Done For Me Lately,' " Schmoke said at the Northwest Baltimore Corp.'s awards event at Pimlico on Sunday.