Johnson, Moyer in Annapolis

Mayoral race: Incumbent and alderwoman are best choices for mayor in next week's primary.

September 05, 2001

ANNAPOLIS needs a mayor who is able to unite it.

Fortunately, the city has a candidate from each party who'll be able to do that -- incumbent Republican Mayor Dean L. Johnson and Ellen O. Moyer, a Democratic city council representative. Both should prevail in their respective primaries.

Mr. Johnson, 57, a retired U.S. Transportation Department economist, is an easy choice for the Republicans. His administration paved the way for a $150 million multi-use development project that will include a hotel and condominiums. It promises to help revive a part of town that once was left for dead.

Public transportation has flourished during the Johnson administration. Bus ridership has increased at a time when the city badly needed to reduce downtown congestion.

The mayor also deserves credit for keeping a strong police chief who has worked to build relations with city residents of all races. And he has opened the public hearing process for all legislation before the entire city council.

His opponent, Herbert H. McMillan, a 42-year-old airline pilot, is an extraordinarily divisive figure. He showed extremely poor judgment with his sponsorship of an "anti-drug-loitering law" just after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a nearly identical Chicago law on constitutional grounds. A federal court, too, struck down the Annapolis law.

Among the Democrats, Ms. Moyer, 65, is a former Annapolis first lady who has served 14 years on the city council. She's a former teacher who has worked for the state teachers' association, served as a state school board member and was executive director of the Maryland Commission for Women. Her record shows an ability to pull together people across racial and economic barriers.

Maureen Lamb, who has a long record of achievement in civic affairs, including serving as a County Council member and county school board member, is also a strong candidate, worthy of voter consideration among the other Democratic candidates.

On balance, though, Ellen O. Moyer is our recommendation in the Democratic primary.

Of the two Republicans, we recommend incumbent Dean L. Johnson.

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