McGuire keeps walking down campaign trail Gubernatorial candidate spreads message in city

April 19, 1998|By Ivan Penn | Ivan Penn,SUN STAFF

Dressed in the black leather lace-ups that have become a symbol of his uphill, "shoe-leather" campaign, Dr. Terence A. McGuire hit the streets of Baltimore yesterday to drum up support in his run for governor.

Almost a dozen volunteers joined McGuire in Southeast Baltimore, on foot and in cars, from American Harry's bar at 625 S. Luzerne Ave. into Highlandtown and later to the Inner Harbor, shaking hands and passing out fliers with his slogan, "A Voice for the Voiceless."

"We're running a shoe-leather campaign, and I want to give the boot to the political cronies in the state of Maryland," said McGuire, a conservative Democrat who proclaims himself pro-labor but anti-abortion.

Yesterday's campaign visit was McGuire's 10th in Baltimore. The general practitioner from Prince George's County, who is

considered a long shot in the Democratic primary, has campaigned in such areas as Lexington Market, Canton and Little Italy.

Some of those who met the 55-year-old McGuire yesterday said it was refreshing to hear a new voice in the political debate. Frustrated with what they say is a lack of improvement in problems with city crime and education, some residents saw McGuire as a welcome alternative to incumbent Gov. Parris N. Glendening.

"All Glendening is interested in is himself," said Steven A. Sadzinski, sitting inside American Harry's bar, where McGuire was campaigning. "If [McGuire] is going to do something in this neighborhood, he's got my vote."

Outside the bar -- formerly owned by American Joe Miedusiewski, who lost to Glendening in the 1994 Democratic primary -- others echoed the discontent.

"I don't like what has been going on," said Patricia Freburger, a lifelong Baltimorean who was taking a walk with her grandson, Kodie, 10.

"I'm concerned about jobs for my grandson. I'm concerned about his future. I'll back you," Freburger told McGuire, who is among four Democrats who have declared their candidacies.

"I don't have much opinion about McGuire," said Doug Rollins, 29, a neighborhood resident, looking over a leaflet that the candidate had handed him. "I've never met him before.

Rollins said that it was too early for him to decide on a candidate, but that he believes the Glendening administration is "doing a pretty good job."

For McGuire to compete against Glendening and the three other candidates, he'll likely have to wear out his new campaigning shoes and probably a few other pairs to get his message across.

His war chest amounts to just tens of thousands of dollars, compared with the multimillion-dollar funds of Glendening and some of his challengers. The others who have announced their candidacies are Harford County Executive Eileen M. Rehrmann, insurance executive and former Washington Redskins football player Raymond F. Schoenke and Hagerstown planner Don Allensworth.

But McGuire says he's undaunted by the challenge.

"They can't buy the people of Maryland," he said. "The people of Maryland cannot be bought by some slick ad or high-tech advertising."

McGuire said he has a message that addresses the concerns of people across the state. Many of his campaign issues are similar to those of Glendening and other candidates, but McGuire insists he would take a stronger stand than the current administration.

Those issues include tougher regulation of health maintenance organizations and managed-care companies; lower tuition at state colleges; and a promise to return budget surpluses to the taxpayers.

One of McGuire's primary focuses is on reducing crime. He said efforts to reduce crime have not been sufficient because people don't feel safe.

"People are fed up with crime," said McGuire, adding that he wants the state to institute a no-parole policy for violent offenders.

Pub Date: 4/19/98

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