Vote, Annapolis Anne Arundel County: A handful of votes can swing a primary election such as today's.

September 16, 1997

ANNAPOLIS VOTERS today will choose Democratic and Republican candidates for mayor and City Council. They should not forfeit the opportunity. We urge all qualified Annapolitans to go to the polls and participate in an important, yet too often neglected, ritual in our democratic life.

If civic duty is not motivation enough, however, they can always vote for selfish reasons. Half of the men and women voters who are victorious in today's primaries will become city officials after the general election on Nov. 4. Those eventual winners will formulate the city's policies and spending plans over the next four years. Voters owe it to themselves to select the best possible people to run Annapolis. Decisions by these public officials will have a profound impact on the day-to-day lives of current and future city residents.

Annapolis will be getting a new mayor. Alfred A. Hopkins is prohibited by law from running for a third term. Candidates have been campaigning vigorously to secure the nominations from their parties.

Among the Democratic hopefuls for mayor, voters must select from Ward 5 Alderman Carl O. Snowden, former mayor Dennis M. Callahan and retired federal employee Sylvanus B. Jones. Republican voters will have to choose from Ward 7 Alderman M. Theresa DeGraff, Ward 2 Alderman Dean L. Johnson and community activist Louise M. R. Beauregard. We have endorsed Mr. Snowden in the Democratic primary, Mr. Johnson in the Republican.

Regardless of the outcome of this election, newcomers will dominate the next council. Three well-established aldermen -- Ms. DeGraff, Messrs. Johnson and Snowden -- have given up their seats to run for mayor. Incumbents J. Shepard Tullier in Ward 4 and Wayne C. Turner in Ward 6 have decided not to run for re-election. This means that voters will have to choose among candidates who are not as familiar as the incumbents vacating their seats.

While it is an old cliche that every vote counts, in Annapolis a handful of votes can change the outcome of an election, particularly in the aldermanic races. In 1989, for example, Mr. Hopkins unseated Mr. Callahan by 181 votes. Every eligible voter is a player and should make every effort to vote today. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Pub Date: 9/16/97

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