Ministers criticize Sauerbrey Campaign Ad Watch

October 13, 1998|By Thomas W. Waldron

In a new radio commercial airing in Baltimore, the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance attacks Republican Ellen R. Sauerbrey's positions on cigarette taxes, gun control and casino-style gambling.

What the ad says: The hard-hitting, 60-second commercial asserts that Sauerbrey is a tool of "rich special interests." It says the "gun lobby" pushed Sauerbrey to oppose "every reasonable gun law, including restrictions on semiautomatic assault weapons." It also says the tobacco industry wants her to oppose "effective measures to curb teen smoking, such as the Maryland Children's Initiative," and that casino interests are urging her to allow the legalization of slot machines in Maryland. The ad concludes, "Special interests may control Ellen Sauerbrey, but they don't control you. So vote on Tuesday, Nov. 3." The ad includes sound effects of a person coughing, a gun firing and a slot machine operating to dramatize the three issues.

The facts: During her 16 years in the House of Delegates, Sauerbrey did vote against all major gun-control measures, including a ban on certain assault pistols. Sauerbrey has also come out against a key plank of the "Maryland Children's Initiative" that is not spelled out in the ad -- a $1.50 increase in the state tax on a pack of cigarettes. Her Democratic opponent, Gov. Parris N. Glendening, supports the tax increase as a way of curbing teen smoking. On gambling, Sauerbrey has said she would consider the legalization of slot machines at race tracks to help the racing industry. Glendening has promised to veto any such legislation approved by the General Assembly.

Analysis: The ministerial alliance, made up of Baltimore-area preachers, has endorsed Glendening for re-election but does not mention him in this ad. It seeks, instead, to remind voters of Sauerbrey's positions on three major issues with which they disagree.

Pub Date: 10/13/98

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