Mayor Moyer

November 10, 2005

There was cause for celebration in Annapolis yesterday - the unpleasantness is over. The voters re-elected Mayor Ellen O. Moyer after one of the nastier elections in recent memory. Ms. Moyer was demonized for the city's traffic, high property taxes and downtown's languishing Market House. But voters realized that much of the criticism was overblown (recognizing, for instance, that she has actually lowered the city's tax rate). As a result, she was re-elected by a margin several hundred votes larger than when she first took office four years ago.

There are lessons in this. First, voters in the capital city are not swayed by personal attacks. And it's obvious Annapolis remains a staunchly Democratic outpost in an increasingly Republican county, which bodes well for House Speaker Michael E. Busch, because the Annapolis delegate is a prime target of Maryland Republicans next year.

But Ms. Moyer must also recognize that her personal style strikes some as too brusque and that voters are rightly concerned about the pace and impact of local development. To that end, the mayor says she wants to involve as many people as possible in an upcoming rewrite of the city's comprehensive plan. Now, Ms. Moyer has a chance for a fresh start with the incoming council - and with a city that's renewed its trust in her.

FOR THE RECORD - An editorial Thursday misstated the comparative size of Ellen O. Moyer's Election Day victories. The Annapolis mayor won Tuesday's election by 762 votes. Her margin of victory in 2001 was 720 votes.
The Sun regrets the error.

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