Giannetti to run for state Senate

Delegate to challenge longtime incumbent Dorman in District 21

North Laurel

May 14, 2002|By Larry Carson | Larry Carson,SUN STAFF

In a decision prompted by redistricting, one-term Del. John A. Giannetti Jr. yesterday declared his challenge to 38-year General Assembly veteran State Sen. Arthur Dorman.

Giannetti, a Democrat who lives in Laurel, represents District 13B, which covers parts of Prince George's and southern Howard counties.

He said Gov. Parris N. Glendening's legislative redistricting plan forced him either to move and follow District 13 from Howard into western Anne Arundel County, or run in District 21. In the new plan, that district would spill over from Prince George's County to cover a slice of southern Howard along the Patuxent River, west of North Laurel. The addition of four Prince George's Democrats to the Howard delegation would also give the Democrats clear control.

"I wanted to represent the area that I decided is my home," Giannetti said, noting that he plans to buy the townhouse in which he lives and stay in Laurel.

"I respect all the members of the District 21 team and I supported them. It's not an easy decision to make, he said.

Dorman, who is 75 and missed a large part of the 90-day General Assembly session this year after surgery, "hasn't had a major challenger - certainly not an incumbent challenger - since 1982. It's time," said Giannetti, who is 37.

The younger man said he has a track record in Howard, has sponsored several bills to help Howard residents, and knows the county's issues, while Dorman does not. Giannetti has vowed to knock on every door in the district.

Dorman, elected a delegate in 1965 and a state senator in 1975, seemed unworried yesterday.

"I've had these kind of challenges before and I've warded them off. I'm not that concerned," said the Senate Finance Committee vice chairman.

Dorman said his surgery in February was for a pinched nerve that made it difficult for him to walk. He said he is better.

"In Laurel's parade Saturday, I walked the whole route. We're planning on a major role in the precincts in Howard," he said.

Giannetti should have run for re-election in the new District 13, Dorman said, adding, "It's part of his old district. There's an opening for one delegate seat."

Dorman said he is not interested in retirement. "As long as I perform and get things done for the people I represent, I'll stay in there," he said.

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