Glendening rakes in $500,000 CAMPAIGN 1994 -- THE RACE FOR GOVERNOR

October 21, 1994|By William F. Zorzi Jr. | William F. Zorzi Jr.,Sun Staff Writer

More than 2,000 supporters of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Parris N. Glendening gathered last night for a fund-raiser at the Baltimore Convention Center -- a statewide gala designed to rake in another $500,000 for his campaign against Republican Ellen R. Sauerbrey.

Mr. Glendening's fund-raising goal of $6 million -- which has earned him the moniker "The $6 million man" by Mrs. Sauerbrey -- will take him to an all-time high for money raised for a Maryland governor's race.

"This is the major event before the general election for raising money," said Lalit H. Gadhia, a lawyer and Baltimore's zoning board chairman who is Mr. Glendening's campaign treasurer. "We've already spent close to $3.5 million and are looking at having to spend $2.5 million for the general election."

Glendening aides said about 2,500 tickets -- priced at $125 and ** $500 -- were sold and that the campaign met its $500,000 goal.

The event, which seemed more like a Democratic Party rally than a gubernatorial fund-raiser, featured a long list of speakers who praised the Prince George's County executive and warned of the GOP threat.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Sauerbrey, the Maryland House minority leader from Baltimore County, was not to be outdone by the event for Mr. Glendening. She scheduled a midafternoon news conference front of the Convention Center, where she slammed the Democrat for an alliance with Gov. William Donald Schaefer, charged that Mr. Glendening was supported by special interests and proposed a four-point reform plan.

The governor's support of Mr. Glendening's candidacy is "a scheme that will result in the continuation of the Schaefer tax-and-spend policies that have kept the pork barrel rolling in Maryland for the past eight years," said Mrs. Sauerbrey.

"What we are really seeing is an attempt by Schaefer to keep a slice of Maryland's pork pie for himself and his supporters by pouring more money into the special-interest coffers of the Glendening fund-raising machine," she said.

Mrs. Sauerbrey said the alliance between the two Democrats "was forged in a back room and kept secret from the public" until it was reported Wednesday in The Sun.

In an interview with The Sun, Mr. Schaefer said he has talked to Mr. Glendening twice since the primary election and had urged him to keep campaigning against Mrs. Sauerbrey. The governor said he has not been asked for an endorsement by Mr. Glendening and does not expect to endorse him.

He did, however, acknowledge that in speaking engagements across the state he has warned that the result of Mrs. Sauerbrey's proposal to cut personal income taxes by 24 percent over four years would be "devastating" for Maryland.

Schaefer administration officials -- many of whom were prominent among the crowd at the Convention Center -- are working for Mr. Glendening and sold tickets for the event.

Eric Andrus, a Glendening spokesman, denied the Sauerbrey charges of an "alliance."

Campaign aides charged that she was being supported by "special interests" -- which Mr. Gadhia said included "the gun lobby, environmental polluters, other right-wing groups."

Most of the money raised will be spent on television advertising in the 2 1/2 weeks before the Nov. 8 general election, he said.

Mrs. Sauerbrey opted to accept public financing for her gubernatorial campaign, which limits her to spending just under $1 million for the general election. But an independent expenditure campaign -- at least one has formed to support her -- can raise and spend any amount, provided its activities are not coordinated with her campaign.

The four reforms she proposed were: banning all lobbyist gifts to legislators and administration officials; prohibiting lobbyists from raising money for statewide candidates; closing existing loopholes on the state's $10,000 campaign contribution limit; and abolishing the much-ballyhooed legislative scholarships doled out by the General Assembly.

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