Two enter race for Md. House Districts 4B and 5

May 03, 1994|By Traci A. Johnson and Mary Gail Hare | Traci A. Johnson and Mary Gail Hare,Sun Staff Writers

An incumbent and a newcomer yesterday announced their intention to run for the Maryland House of Delegates to represent Carroll and Frederick county districts.

Del. Donald B. Elliott, 62, a two-term delegate, and Joseph Hooper Mettle, 60, a retired National Security Agency communications systems engineer, officially joined the race to represent residents of Districts 4B and 5, respectively.

The Maryland legislature realigned District 4B in 1990, to eliminate election districts in Howard County and add the Linganore, Johnsville and Emmitsburg election districts in Frederick County.

Mr. Mettle brings the number of Republicans vying for the 5th District seat in the Sept. 13 primary to nine.

He said he "will be running to replace Governor [William Donald] Schaefer's man in Carroll County, Democrat Delegate [Richard N.] Dixon."

"Career politicians must be replaced" by "citizen legislators" who have limited terms, Mr. Mettle said in a news release yesterday.

Other announced Republican candidates for the three District 5 delegate seats are: Carroll Del. Richard C. Matthews, Carroll County Commissioner Julia W. Gouge of Hampstead, W. David Blair of Manchester, Jerome J. Joyce of Hampstead, and Francis X. Walsh, Jerry L. Toadvine and Nancy R. Stocksdale, all of Westminster.

Three Democrats -- Mr. Dixon, Phillip R. Deitchman of Eldersburg and Ellen L. Willis of Westminster -- also are running for the office.

Mr. Mettle has been on the Carroll County Republican Central Committee since 1990. During an unsuccessful run for the House of Delegates that year, he garnered 1,869 votes. The Eldersburg resident calls himself "a conservative, a super patriot in the [Barry] Goldwater and Robert Dole tradition."

During his campaign, Mr. Mettle will call for term limits and work toward tougher crime laws such as the death penalty in drug kingpins and drug-related murder cases, and mandatory prison sentences for drug pushers.

Mr. Elliott yesterday announced his intention to seek a third term in District 4B by asking about 50 supporters and friends gathered in his Union Bridge Pharmacy for their "continued faith in my ability to serve you for the next four year-term.

Mr. Elliott panned liberal legislators who are trying to solve the state's crime problem by gun control instead of determining punishment for crimes that would act as a deterrent.

"Too many minds of our more liberal legislators were focused on guns," Mr. Elliott said. "Even though every gun control bill has been a failure, these liberals refuse to enact tough criminal control legislation."

The incumbent said he will continue work to protect farmers' rights, address retired people's concerns -- such as affordable health care -- and discourage legislative mandates that favor the environment without consideration for individual property rights and economic development.

He also said he would work to find other ways to reduce the state's deficit other than taxation.

"Several years ago, when the state was faced with large deficits, the legislature left that session voting for almost a billion dollars in new taxes," Mr. Elliott said. "Now we are informed that we may be faced with similar, although smaller, projected deficits in the years after 1996.

"We must downsize government by prioritizing programs and services and assuring that they are administered in the most cost-effective manner," he said.

Mr. Elliott was elected to the General Assembly in 1986. He has been a member of the Environmental Matters Committee, the Joint Committee on Healthcare Cost Containment and the Governor's Task Force on Solid Waste Management.

Republican state Senate candidate Tim Ferguson and Ms. Stocksdale visited Union Bridge yesterday to wish Mr. Elliott luck.

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