Campaigns are stressful for the most even-tempered politicians. But Councilman Edward L. Reisinger III, in the midst of a heated re-election campaign, says he would never vent that stress by throwing a punch.
Last Saturday, Mr. Reisinger, D-6th, was accused of punching and boodying the lip of the president of a Southwest Baltimore political club during an argument outside the Purple Goose tavern on Washington Boulevard.
James M. Goble, president of the Universal Democratic Club and a former city police officer, told police that he and Mr. Reisinger were having a dispute over campaign lawn signs when the attack occurred.
"I told him I wanted to sit down and talk, but he didn't want to do that," said Mr. Goble. "First he pushed me; then he punched me."
"I didn't hit him," said Mr. Reisinger, 37, who was appointed to the council to replace the late William J. Myers in January 1990. "He was putting his finger in my face, and he pushed me so I pushed him back.
"I'm very passive," Mr. Reisinger added.
"I'm a mild-mannered guy," countered Mr. Goble. "It's a shame that it had to come to this."
Police officers who were called by Mr. Goble filed a report on the incident and said that they saw no injuries on Mr. Goble. Yesterday, Mr. Goble sought a court summons against Mr. Reisinger on assault charges. He said the court date was set for September 17.
The political implications? Minimal, so far. Mr. Goble said he would try to have the club's endorsement of Mr. Reisinger withdrawn. Other club officials are not so sure. Club vice president Michael Keeney said the club's decision was firm.
"Eddie's one of our most tenacious council people," Mr. Keeney said. "And I have never seen him raise his voice against anyone."