Townsend Fighting for Political Life: In the Maryland Governor's Race, Kathleen Kennedy Townsend Appears to Be Losing the Battle to Prove She Isn't Just Getting by on the Legacy of Her Family Name. (Election 2002: Maryland)

By Maier, Timothy W. | Insight on the News, October 29, 2002 | Go to article overview

Townsend Fighting for Political Life: In the Maryland Governor's Race, Kathleen Kennedy Townsend Appears to Be Losing the Battle to Prove She Isn't Just Getting by on the Legacy of Her Family Name. (Election 2002: Maryland)


Maier, Timothy W., Insight on the News


Republicans may be licking their chops after taking a look at how Maryland Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend fared in the Democratic primary for governor. Her victory celebration was short-lived when it was realized that she had lost 20 percent of the vote to political unknown Robert Fustero, a retired grocery clerk who spent less than $1,000 on his candidacy. Townsend had laid out a cool $2.3 million.

What will this mean on Election Day for the 50-year-old Townsend, who is the eldest child of the late Robert F. Kennedy? Her Republican challenger, Rep. Bob Ehrlich, puts it bluntly to INSIGHT: "Imagine if Fustero spent $2,000."

Ehrlich, who has budgeted $4 million for the race, refuses to guarantee a victory but appears to be smelling an upset. "I'd be foolish to say that we will win this race," he says. "But I tell you now we have pulled to where we thought we could be."

As INSIGHT goes to press the latest Mason-Dixon poll shows Ehrlich leading Townsend 46 percent to 43 percent. Townsend's campaign appears to be unraveling from a combination of political blunders, speech slipups and Kennedy scandal.

Even if Townsend manages to pull out a last-minute victory any celebration again could be short-lived as she finds herself embroiled in both state and federal investigations that could turn ugly. The probes involve the misuse of public money, and the scandal is not sitting well with voters who recently learned that Townsend's boss, Gov. Parris Glendening, has led Maryland into the dismal swamp of a $1 billion deficit. So unpopular is Glendening that Townsend has avoided the governor throughout the campaign.

It didn't help that Glendening boosted himself as a prudent manager of all things financial when he was the Prince George's County executive. It turns out that he left the county in a $400 million hole as well. To make matters worse, he then authorized fat pensions for his political buddies and, ignoring the political offal hitting the fan, divorced his wife to marry an aide whom he promoted to positions in which others were more qualified to serve.

Through all of this and more Townsend supported his every move, expecting Glendening to repay her loyalty. But he can't help now because to try might cost her votes. So she remains quiet about her boss, talking instead about all the things she would like to do that he apparently refused to do. Her big-ticket items are to increase funding for education, support character training in schools and provide prescription drugs to seniors. When asked why none of her plans were acted upon during the last eight years when she was lieutenant governor, she is mum. Nor does she seem to know how to pay for most of her programs other than to raise the tax on cigarettes, which Ehrlich calls a tax on the poor.

Republicans say she was a silent partner whose ideas were not valued; that to Glendening she was just another Kennedy who could bring in campaign money. Democrats privately worry that the recent appearance of President George W. Bush at an Ehrlich fund-raiser will provide the push that finishes Townsend's political career. If so, it will be her second loss, the first having been a defeat by former newshound Helen Bentley in a 1986 congressional race. Ehrlich proudly points out that while he has been elected four times, Townsend never has won anything alone. "I wouldn't give up a safe congressional seat if I didn't think I would win," he says.

Richard Vatz, a professor of mass communications at Towson University in Maryland, says the election may come down to whether people view "Townsend as an unwitting tool of a corrupt administration or a component of the administration." There's trouble either way.

But Townsend's stewardship of the criminal-justice system in Maryland may be what derails her. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is investigating conditions in Maryland's juvenile-detention facilities to determine whether the civil rights of young offenders have been violated. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Townsend Fighting for Political Life: In the Maryland Governor's Race, Kathleen Kennedy Townsend Appears to Be Losing the Battle to Prove She Isn't Just Getting by on the Legacy of Her Family Name. (Election 2002: Maryland)
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.