Cunningham out in 3rd Cain losing in 1st, as membership is overhauled CITY PRIMARY ELECTION 1995 CITY COUNCIL

September 13, 1995|By This article was reported and written by Sun staff writers Jim Haner, Joe Mathews, John Rivera and Norris P. West.

An article in Wednesday's final editions mischaracterized the position of 3rd District Councilman Wilbur "Bill" Cunningham, defeated Tuesday in his bid for re-election, on the Pulaski incinerator. Mr. Cunningham supported the five-year moratorium on incinerators passed by the council in 1992. Last year, he co-sponsored a bill that would have ended the moratorium, because, he said, the city needed to replace the incinerator in order to fulfill agreements Baltimore made to cooperate regionally in the disposal of waste.

The Sun regrets the error.

Northeast Baltimore's Wilbur E. "Bill" Cunningham lost his bid for re-election to the City Council last night, and John L. Cain of East Baltimore was losing in a contest that could be decided by absentee ballots.

With all the votes counted, Mr. Cain finished in fourth place in the 1st District race -- 57 votes behind challenger Charles Krysiak, the son of a state legislator.

FOR THE RECORD - CORRECTION

The departure of both incumbents would add to a major transformation of the council, which already was poised to change a third of its members.

A large turnover was a given after four members -- Lawrence A. Bell III, Vera P. Hall, Joseph J. DiBlasi and Carl Stokes -- decided to forgo re-election to run for the council president's seat being vacated by Mary Pat Clarke. Two other council members, Iris G. Reeves and Martin E. "Mike" Curran, decided to retire.

Although there were 11 candidates who ran unopposed in yesterday's Republican primary, winning the Democratic primary is tantamount to election in the overwhelmingly Democratic city.

During the campaign, constituents in the 1st District, with its mostly white, blue-collar neighborhoods that straddle the Inner Harbor and continue into Northeast Baltimore, voiced complaints shabby recreation centers, declining schools and creeping drug traffic on their borders. The incumbents charged that the Schmoke administration had turned its back on their district.

But some of the eight Democratic challengers said the constant feuding between Mr. Cain and Nicholas C. D'Adamo Jr. was to blame. Along with Lois A. Garey, who was appointed to her seat in February, they tempted the wrath of independent-minded voters.

Mr. D'Adamo easily won re-election, Mrs. Garey by a smaller margin.

In the 2nd District, which stretches from the housing projects bordering West Baltimore to the mansions of Guilford, challengers ran on an anti-incumbent platform and railed against inaction by City Hall. Mr. Stokes opted not to run for a seat that almost certainly would have been his.

Incumbents Anthony J. Ambridge and Paula Johnson Branch won last night, along with former city councilman and state Sen. Robert L. Douglass.

The question in the majority-black 3rd District, which includes neighborhoods from Northwood into northeast sections such as Hamilton and Belair-Edison, was whether residents would elect their first black representative. During the 1991 redistricting, the district switched from majority-white to majority-black. But in the election that year, all three winners -- Mr. Curran, Mr. Cunningham and newcomer Martin O'Malley -- were white.

Last night, Robert W. Curran -- brother of the retiring incumbent -- and Mr. O'Malley won the top two spots. Joan Carter Conway, a Northwood resident who is black, took the third slot over Mr. Cunningham.

Mr. Cunningham was considered vulnerable because of his close ties to Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke. He also aroused the ire the League of Environmental Voters after he sent out campaign literature stating "I took on City Hall to stop them from expanding the Pulaski Incinerator." The environmental group put out a scathing notice saying, "Don't be Fooled By Wilbur Cunningham," accurately pointing out that Mr. Cunningham did not support a 5-year moratorium on incinerators.

In the 4th District, two council veterans faced challenges from a "brat pack" of four politically inexperienced candidates under the age of 30.

The incumbents, Agnes Welch and Sheila Dixon, emphasized their experience and pledged to fight crime within the structure of existing laws. A third seat was left open by Mr. Bell's departure.

The two women were victorious, along with Keiffer J. Mitchell Jr., 27, whose family members have served in Congress, the state legislature and the council.

The 5th District had been dominated for eight years by the team of Mrs. Hall, Mrs. Reeves and Rochelle "Rikki" Spector in the northwest section of the city, which is largely African-American with a solid Jewish population.

But with Mrs. Hall running for council president and Mrs. Reeves retiring, Mrs. Spector had to field a new team. She formed a ticket with Stephanie C. Rawlings, the 25-year-old daughter of state Del. Howard "Pete" Rawlings, and Harry E. Smith, an activist hand-picked by state Sen. Clarence W. Blount.

Mrs. Spector and Ms. Rawlings won handily last night. Helen L. Holton, a certified public accountant and treasurer of the Black-Jewish Forum, won the third slot.

With Mr. DiBlasi giving up his seat in the 6th District, Melvin L. Stukes was left as the lone elected incumbent. The Rev. Norman A. Handy Sr. was appointed this year to fill a vacancy created when Timothy D. Murphy was elected to the legislature. Mr. Stukes and Mr. Handy were both winners last night, along with Edward L. Reisinger, a former appointee to the council who lost four years ago.

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