CHRONICLE ENDORSEMENT:

Townsend for Governor

It took a while to come around to the conclusion that we can recommend voting FOR Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, rather than just voting AGAINST Bob Ehrlich. While Mr. “Slot-Machines-Can-Solve-Everything” Ehrlich has always been a political disappointment, lacking leadership and independence of thought and action, Ms. Townsend always struck us as one of the politically anointed types who got where she was because of who she is, not what she’s done or capable of doing. The term “empty suit” came to mind.

Now that we have seen Ms. Townsend come out from behind the shadow of Parris “Good Riddance” Glendening, we see that we were hasty to judge her. Though her marblemouth pronouncements have occasionally reminded us of the White House incumbent, she has come through this election process with her dignity intact, and with a platform we can commend as reasonable, balanced, and intelligent—descriptors that cannot be applied to the halfbaked pronouncements of Mr. Ehrlich.

If Ms. Townsend loses to Mr. Ehrlich, it will be in no small part due to the Ehrlich advertising campaign’s assertion that the Glendening-Townsend administration has mishandled state revenues. This is not the case. Maryland’s current budget deficit comes primarily from having lost tax revenue due to the economic downturn—not from mismanagement. In fact, Maryland’s economic downturn is not nearly as severe as that in most states—a fact for which the current administration can take at least partial credit.


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This story was published on November 4, 2002.