GOP fails in bid to win seat on council Democrats safe: Though Republican Joseph Brown Jr.'s battle to break the Democratic stronghold on the City Council ended in defeat, he vows to fight again.

November 08, 1995|By Joan Jacobson | Joan Jacobson,SUN STAFF

The Republican Party didn't ask for much of Baltimore. They would have been happy if a GOP candidate took one City Council seat -- an event that would have broken up the Democrats' 53-year reign on the council.

But it wasn't meant to be.

They were banking on the campaign of Joseph Brown Jr., an insurance salesman from Southwest Baltimore's 6th District.

Mr. Brown trailed his Democratic opponents by a wide margin last night with 90 percent of the votes counted.

Despite his defeat, Mr. Brown said last night that he plans to run for office again and predicted that his effort "will be the rebirth of the Republican Party in the city. We are here to stay, and I think the Democrats realize that."

His campaign sparked consternation in the 6th District, not only because he was a rare Republican thought to have a chance to win, but also because he was a black man vying for a seat in a district already represented by two African-Americans.

White Democrats, who historically controlled the 6th District, worried that Mr. Brown would push out white candidate Edward L. Reisinger.

Earlier yesterday evening, a weary Mr. Brown stood in the cold drizzle outside a polling place in West Baltimore's Allendale section, greeting voters in a low-key, almost shy manner.

made a point of telling black voters that Mr. Reisinger had made racially negative comments about him. Mr. Reisinger's comments were quoted in The Sun from a tape recording of his renarks.

Mr. Brown said the campaign had been difficult in the entrenched Democratic neighborhoods, where a Republican is often looked upon as a pariah.

Mr. Brown said he lost about 100 campaign signs that were torn down along Washington Boulevard and replaced with signs for his Democratic opponents.

But in the end, his campaign picked up speed as voters and campaign contributors liked his well-spoken manner, his pitch for tax-financed vouchers for private schools, and his position as an independent candidate.

He estimated that he raised more than $10,000 in the end, much of it coming in the last week of the campaign.

In the usually quiet political time between the primary and general elections, Mr. Brown's candidacy sparked a barroom fight that left another Republican's hand in a splint, an assault charge, a liquor board complaint and a threat of a lawsuit.

His campaign also awakened the state's Republican Party, which made an effort to support all the Republican candidates for city office for the first time in decades.

The state GOP sent 19,000 voters campaign literature that challenged them to "Send Kurt Schmoke a message he'll never forget."

Voter turnout

B8Voter turnout at Baltimore's mayoral general elections.

1943: 36 percent

1947: 49 percent

1959: 53 percent

1963: 55 percent

1967: 40 percent

1971: 32 percent

1975: 30 percent

1979: 36 percent

1983: 37 percent

1987: 34 percent

1991: 27 percent

1995: 20 percent

City election results

...Mayor

*Kurt L. Schmoke (D) ... ... 52,405 ... ... 78.9

*Victor Clarke Jr. (R) .. .. 14,050 ... ... 21.1

Council President

*Lawrence A. Bell III (D) ... ... 52,153 ... ... 83.5

*Anthony D. Cobb (R) ... ... .... 10,343 ... ... 16.5

Comptroller

*Joan M. Pratt (D) ... ... ... 48,717 ... ... ... 80.2

*Christopher P. McShane (R) .. 12,013 ... ... ... 19.8

Council District 1

*John L. Cain (D) ... ... 7,723 ... ... 26.1

*Nicholas D'Adamo Jr. (D) ... ... 7,758 ... ... 26.2

*Lois Garey (D) ... ... ... 6,975 ... ... ... 23.6

*Donald Carver (R) ... .... 2,537 .... ... .. 8.6

*Tisha Dadd-Bulna (R) .. .. 2,113 .... ... .. 7.1

*Gene Michaels (R) .... ... 2,481 .... ... .. 8.4

Council District 2

*Anthony J. Ambridge (D) ... ... 7,122 ... ... 31.0

*Paula Johnson Branch (D) ... .. 6,713 ... ... 29.2

*Robert L. Douglas (D) .... ... 6,615 ... ... 28.8

*Charlie Baskerville Sr. (R) ... 1,446 ... ... 6.3

*Duane E. Shelton (R) .... ..... 1,077 ... ... 4.7

Council District 3

*Joan Carter Conway (D) ... .... 9,923 ... .... 42.2

*Robert W. Curran (D) .... ..... 10,035 ... ... 42.7

*Martin O'Malley (D) .... ...... 9,883 ... .... 42.0

*Norman F. Anderson (R) .... ... 1,655 ... .... 7.0

*C. C. Moss (R) ... .... ... ... 1,951 .... ... 8.3

Council District 4

*Sheila Dixon (D) .... .... .... 9,794 .... ... 34.0

*Keiffer J. Mitchell Jr. (D) ... 9,386 .... ... 32.6

*Agnes Welch (D) .... .... ..... 9,619 ... .... 33.4

*No Republicans filed

Council District 5

*Helen L. Holton (D) .... ...... 9,362 .... ... 28.9

*Stephanie C. Rawlings (D) ..... 10,007 ... ... 30.9

*Rochelle Rikki Spector (D) .... 9,966 .... ... 30.8

*William M. Hall Jr. (R) ... ... 3,017 .... ... 9.3

Council District 6

*Norman A. Handy Sr. (D) ... ... 5,281 .... ... 25.1

*Edward L. Reisinger (D) ... ... 5,378 .... ... 25.6

*Melvin L. Stukes (D) ..... .... 6,025 .... ... 28.7

*Joseph Brown Jr. (R) .... ..... 2,115 .... ... 10.1

*Anthony F. Forlenza (R) ... ... 983 .... ..... 4.7

*Wayne Lewis Sherman (R) ... ... 1,233 .... ... 5.9

All precincts reporting. *Denotes elected *Leading

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