Local, national politics combine

Sen. Haines' party draws fans of Quayle, who missed event

July 18, 1999|By Jennifer Sullivan | Jennifer Sullivan,SUN STAFF

Carroll County state Sen. Larry E. Haines had an interesting combination of events for his 10th annual summer picnic, a fund-raiser at the Carroll County Farm Museum.

The third-term Republican kicked off yesterday's event with clowns, potato sack races, a brass band and nearly 80 volunteers serving pit beef and homemade ice cream. Even a group of leather-clad Harley Davidson bikers offered their support for the state senator from the parking lot.

But as the day went on, Haines brought national politics to center stage, speaking of the need for a conservative leader in the White House while rallying constituents to support the presidential campaign of former Vice President Dan Quayle.

Quayle canceled his scheduled appearance at the fund-raiser to visit his son, Tucker, in China, where the younger Quayle was recently married. Haines got word of the cancellation Thursday in a fax.

Still, nearly 1,000 people showed up at the Westminster museum to raise money for Haines. All supporters over the age of 17 paid $20 to shake hands with Haines, a Carroll County real estate agent and a member of the state Senate since 1991. Folks under 16 paid $5 and those under age 6 were let in free.

The event, a fund-raiser for Haines, drew many people from solidly Republican counties in Western Maryland. George Rill, who operates a cattle, corn and soybean farm in Carrollton, was disappointed by Quayle's absence.

Said Rill, while stirring a giant pot of corn on the cob: "If [Quayle] runs for office, he'll get my vote."

Mack Mattingly, a U.S. senator from Georgia from 1981 to 1987 and national co-chairman of Quayle's presidential campaign, stood in for the former vice president. Mattingly said strong economic and defense policies and Christian conservatism are key parts of Quayle's campaign.

David Grand, a Westminster Democrat and retired government worker, predicted that Quayle would be a popular candidate in the area. "Dan Quayle and his philosophy fits in with Carroll County," he said.

State Treasurer Richard N. Dixon, a Carroll County Democrat, wandered the museum grounds offering support to his friend, Haines.

In addition to Dixon, state Sen. Martin G. Madden, a Howard County Republican, and Carroll Republican Dels. Carmen Amedori and Donald B. Elliott showed up.

Madden and Amedori said Haines' annual fete -- which featured 200 pounds of beef, 1,500 ears of corn, a dozen gallons of coleslaw, 800 hot dogs and 54 gallons of ice cream -- was something every politician in Maryland should experience.

"People put it on their calendars a year in advance," said Amedori.

Pub Date: 7/18/99

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