All-Star ticket offer no hit with Marylanders

June 09, 1993|By Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON -- Major League Baseball apparently struck out with most members of the Maryland congressional delegation, who say they are declining an offer of tickets to the sold-out All Star game at Camden Yards.

Only three of the state's 10 members of Congress have decided to accept the invitation to purchase two passes to the July 13 game. They are Democratic Rep. Steny H. Hoyer and Republicans Helen Delich Bentley and Wayne T. Gilchrest.

Mr. Hoyer plans to attend, and Ms. Bentley has said she'll ask other members of Congress who don't go to give her their tickets so that she can sell them to people from her district. Mr. Gilchrest plans to donate his seats to the Maryland chapter of the Make A Wish Foundation, a charitable organization providing "wishes" to terminally ill children, a spokesman said.

Others are declining, citing the press of official business, a lack of interest in baseball or concern that accepting the offer would appear to be a conflict of interest, since Congress will be considering whether to rescind baseball's exemption from antitrust laws.

Republican Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett and Democrats Kweisi Mfume and Albert R. Wynn said they plan to turn down the ticket offer outright. Two others -- Republican Rep. Constance A. Morella and Democrat Benjamin L. Cardin -- have not yet decided whether to accept the tickets.

Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski declined the ticket offer, said her press secretary, William Toohey, although she does plan to attend the game. Fellow Democratic Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes "probably" will not go to the game, since the Senate is in session that day, his spokesman said.

Each of the 435 representatives and 100 senators is being offered a chance to buy two tickets to the game at $60 each. Only 4,000 of the 48,079 seats were offered to the general public.

A random check of Capitol Hill offices found that most members of Congress could get tickets to the game by way of friends or other connections and did not need the offer.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dan Rostenkowski of Illinois "has more important things on his mind," said his press secretary.

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