Muldowney and Parker in the 6th

September 01, 1994

Within months of taking office two years ago, 6th District Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett made a number of publicized gaffes and took positions that made him one of the most ideological and right-wing members of Congress. Sensing that Mr. Bartlett was politically vulnerable, Democrats and Republicans began mobilizing to run against him.

Seven Democrats are competing for the right to challenge him, including a number of strong candidates.

Donald M. DeArmon, a congressional staffer, has waged a grassroots campaign, refused all political action committee contributions and developed thoughtful positions on campaign finance reform, economic development and welfare reform.

Galen N. Clagett, a former Frederick County commissioner, understands many of the problems facing a district that suffers from suburban sprawl on its eastern edge and economic dislocation in the west.

Stephen Crawford, a Vietnam war veteran and university professor, has spoken knowledgeably on complex issues such as the appropriate time to commit U.S. combat troops and effective measures to fight crime.

Our primary endorsement in the 6th, though, goes to Democrat Paul Muldowney, a former two-term conservative state delegate and Washington County businessman. Mr. Muldowney brings to the race the experience of having worked in the state legislature as a key member of the Appropriations Committee.

He is willing to make tough political decisions -- such as his leadership role in pushing for a much-needed reform of the state pension system, a move that led to his defeat in the next election. He knows how to fashion a consensus and build support for legislation. He is refreshingly candid for a politician. And he knows how tough it is to keep a business going during economic hard times. Mr. Muldowney would be a worthy addition to Maryland's congressional delegation.

For the Republican nomination, we endorse Frederic M. Parker over the incumbent, who does not merit re-nomination.

Mr. Bartlett's ideologically driven positions -- such as refusing to support disaster assistance for hard-pressed Western Maryland counties after last winter's blizzard -- are often inimical to the interests of his district.

Mr. Parker, an electrical engineer who is financing his own campaign, is a fiscal conservative and moderate on social issues in the mold of former U.S. Sen. Charles McC. Mathias Jr., who also represented this district before joining the Senate. Mr. Parker's pragmatic approach to national and local problems is more in keeping with the interests of the people who live in Maryland's 6th.

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