The Republican Party's desire to harness the growing conservative tide in Anne Arundel County is playing out in legislative races there.
District 30: Democratic voters in this Annapolis-centered district should re-elect incumbent Dels. Michael E. Busch and Virginia P. Clagett. Both are well-regarded veterans of county politics. Mr. Busch has proved to be a popular and effective House speaker, a post that gives his district considerable clout. Barbara Samorajczyk, an attorney and two-term County Council member, is the best choice to join them. Ms. Samorajczyk has sometimes been at odds with her fellow council members, but her credentials as an advocate for the environment and for controlling growth are impeccable.
In the Republican primary, the nod goes to Andy Smarick, a thoughtful and experienced former legislative staffer. Also deserving support are Nancy Almgren, a retired investment adviser and party activist from Annapolis, and Mike Collins, who analyzes homeland security matters for the state Transportation Department.
District 31: In the Democratic Senate primary, The Sun endorses Walter J. Shandrowsky, a retired manufacturer's sales representative and former lawmaker who is making a bid to return to public life after a 24-year hiatus. His reasoned, thoughtful voice, as well as his views on the environment, mass transit and health care, would be an asset in the district.
In the Republican Senate primary, Carl G. "Dutch" Holland, a construction consultant from Pasadena and former county councilman, receives our endorsement. He worked across party lines as a councilman and succeeded in getting new schools and libraries.
In the House race, Democratic Del. Joan Cadden has worked diligently on public safety issues, land preservation and school construction funds for the county; she deserves to win the primary. Joining her should be Craig A. Reynolds, a retired vice principal from Severna Park, and Thomas J. Fleckenstein, a former prosecutor who favors strict enforcement of environmental laws.
In the Republican race, we endorse Nicholaus R. Kipke, a manufacturer's broker who supports a Massachusetts-style health care program to serve the uninsured, and Steve Schuh, a financial services consultant from Gibson Island, who has the skills needed in reviewing state budget issues.
District 32: In the Republican primary, our choices are: incumbent Del. Terry R. Gilleland, who would favor diverting a penny from the state sales tax to fund transportation needs and also supports a four-year assessment cycle as a tax relief measure; Mark S. Chang, an insurance consultant from Glen Burnie who is an anti-tax-and-spend Republican and who says he would engage minorities in the political process; and Tiger Pimentel, a commercial real estate investor from Severn who is new to politics but whose views on expanding health care coverage and increasing literacy programs for immigrants would help the underserved.
District 33A: In what may be the county's most staunchly conservative district, Republicans should support incumbent Tony McConkey, a real estate sales broker who supported the so-called flush tax to upgrade sewage treatment, and first-time candidate Greg Kline, a lawyer and former legal counsel to the county's Republican State Central Committee. Democrats ought to choose Paul G. Rudolph, a two-term member of the county school board, and Patricia Weathersbee, the owner of a Crownsville antiques store and the wife of Anne Arundel State's Attorney Frank R. Weathersbee.