Vol. 9, No. 44
November 1- 7, 2001
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In Annapolis, Clear-Cut Choices for Mayor

In troubled times, our leaders become more important. We rely more on our elected officials, expecting them to interpret events for us and to act wisely.

Our faith in our political leaders is much greater than just a few short months ago, polls show. Likewise, we’re not so suspicious — perhaps we’re even trusting — of government.

So as Annapolitans head to the polls on Tuesday to elect a mayor, times are very different than they were when the candidates pitched their hats into the ring. Which means all Marylanders hope the citizens of our capital city look closely and consider thoughtfully before casting their votes.

The last time Annapolitans voted they did so in a daze. It was Sepember 11. There was nothing on any minds but the searing images left by suicide hijackers. It was no day to hold an election, and just one in five elected voters bothered to cast their ballot, ousting incumbent Mayor Dean Johnson, an effective and moderate Republican, in the process.

Had Johnson won, voters would have had to align themselves along a finer dividing line this Tuesday.

Ellen Moyer, 65, a veteran alderwoman from Eastport, was a teacher for many years who worked for the state teacher’s association, sat on the state school board and ran the Maryland Commission for Women. She has a record of uniting people across the lines of race and gender. She’s known as a connector who listens to the shared interests out of which partnerships can be built.

Herb McMillan, 43, a pilot, is a fledgling politician and one of a different stripe. He is a challenging — some say divisive and disruptive — candidate who pushes hard for change that some Annapolitans may want and others may not.

“A lot of time you’re criticized, but I don’t think you make progress by sweeping things under the carpet,” McMillan said a week before the primary, before the tragedy that shocked that election. “I’d rather be shouting about something than not talking about it at all.”

He is known as an alderman for sponsoring the anti-loitering law that ultimately was struck down as unconstitutional after provoking outrage from civil libertarians.
It’s our policy at Bay Weekly not to endorse political candidates. Our role, as we see it, is to pass along information and let you make up your mind.

Whatever your choice, thousands of us who don’t have a voice in this election will be depending on you to cast your vote. Remember the paper-thin margin that gave the presidency to George W. Bush. Remember that a scant 100 voters put Herb McMillan, not Dean Johnson, up against Ellen Moyer. Remember that your vote counts. And go to the polls.

Copyright 2001
Bay Weekly