This Year's Politics: A Nightmare or a Dream?


October 16, 1994

After reading Kevin Thomas' column in The Sun for Howard County on Sept. 25 concerning his nightmare that Ellen Sauerbrey becomes governor of Maryland, I could not sleep until I had an opportunity to respond.

Let me begin by stating that an Ellen Sauerbrey administration would certainly not be a nightmare, but rather a breath of fresh air for Maryland. In Ellen Sauerbrey, we finally have a candidate who has the integrity and strength of character needed to bring accountability and responsibility back to state government.

Unlike her opponent, Ms. Sauerbrey's positions do not change with the political wind nor does she alter her message to satisfy her audience. For the 16 years she has served in the House of Delegates (the last eight as minority leader), Ellen Sauerbrey has always fought for reducing the size and cost of state government, increasing sentences and limiting parole for criminals and expanding victims' rights. These are not new positions for Ellen Sauerbrey. Accordingly, Ms. Sauerbrey has received the support of many taxpayer associations and victims' rights advocates.

Unfortunately for the citizens of Maryland, the past 26 years of Democratic control of the governor's office is not simply a nightmare. We cannot merely pinch ourselves and wake up from the Democrats' destructive tax-and-spend policies. That is why, now more than ever, we need Ellen Sauerbrey's leadership to change the way government is run in Maryland.

All that I can say to Mr. Thomas is that when Ellen Sauerbrey is elected governor, Marylanders will be able to sleep more easily knowing that their streets are safer, their taxes are lower and the government is smaller.

Allan H. Kittleman

Ellicott City

Kevin Thomas hit the nail on the head in his Sept. 25 commentary ("Nightmares about November"). The fallacy in Susan Gray's campaign is that she offers an alternative. The reality is her strident no-growth platform would dig us into a tremendous hole.

Common sense tells us that you can't cut revenues and increase services. Yet Ms. Gray, in theory, would do exactly that, while promising that our schools, police and fire protection and other county services would not suffer. It just does not add up.

Susan Gray entered this race to advance the agenda she has been pushing for several years. She wants to shut down Howard County. She would protect the "haves" and leave the "have nots" to fend for themselves.

Mr. Thomas' nightmare is frightening. Fortunately, the voters can, and I believe will, end this bad dream by rejecting her negative campaign and voting for Chuck Ecker for county executive.

Bob Rutan


Kevin Thomas wonders how Ellen Sauerbrey can cut 6 percent a year from our state taxes. I've lived in two states that have never had an income tax and I had all of the "essential services" we have here or more.

Almost all states in the U.S. have lower overall taxes and they get along quite well. One reason among many: The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development found that some 50 percent of our tax money spent on housing programs in Baltimore was wasted through corruption, nepotism and overcharging. We used to have huge surpluses, but the politicians always made them mysteriously disappear. Cutting taxes in this state should be a snap.

Politicians are starting to realize that the threat of cutting "essential services" won't frighten voters any longer. . . . We know that a fraction of our present taxes gives us essential services. The rest is pork, nepotism, corruption and vote-buying. . . .

Allan C. Stover

Ellicott City

Charles Ecker's point men and spin-doctors are attempting to portray Susan Gray as a one-issue candidate, unworthy of your vote. Nothing is further from the truth.

Susan may have started out in 1987 as a community leader concerned with rapid growth, but for the last seven years, she has been working with communities on a variety of issues.

What was Charles Ecker doing? In 1988, Mr. Ecker was a Democrat and only had experience as an administrator at the Department of Education. He had not helped the people in Howard County in any significant way beyond doing his regular job. He switched parties (become a Republican) in 1990 at the request of a group of developers, their business friends and attorneys. This group wanted someone to run against Liz Bobo because they were not happy with her attempts to slow down the rapid growth in Howard County. He ran under the guise of a nice, wise, grandfatherly man. The kind of guy you'd want to live next door. He won. But what has he done since?

A general plan and re-zoning of the county has been passed over the vigorous objections of more than 1,000 home owners. These changes increase densities of future developments and will require future tax increases for new roads, sewers, schools, etc.

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