Back in 1994, I shook the hands of Sharon Pratt Kelly (D), John Ray (D), and Carol Schwartz (R) during the course of the campaign (Kelly and Schwartz were during Adams-Morgan Day; I don't remember when I encountered Ray). Of course, the winner of the Democratic primary and then the general election was Marion Berry — who I never met or shook hands with.
Flash forward to Labor Day 2006: Celeste and I went to the Greenbelt Labor Day parade to see some fire trucks, bands, and the precision dog-walking team ... and a bunch of politicians.
First up among the politicos was Steny Hoyer, whose district line I am just barely part of. (I think the line between MD-05 and MD-04 is literally just up the street from me.) I didn't shake his hand, so he'll probably beat his only opponent, Green Party candidate Steve Warner, but he did take note of my Boston cap to make a comment about how he wished the Sawx would pull out of their slump. That was nice, but I'm still considering voting for Warner, since there's no chance the district will fall to a Republican.
Next up was Ben Cardin. His people gave Celeste a few stickers and while I will happily vote for him in the general election, I'm currently leaning toward Kweisi Mfume for Senate. Cardin's hand I shook.
Cardin was followed by Republican candidate for Senate, Michael Steele. Steele's people were the only ones who asked if it was okay to give Celeste some C-A-N-D-Y (the woman spelled it out, which was good because Celeste said candy and pointed at what was being thrown from some of the cars earlier in the parade; I didn't know she had that word yet). I shook Steele's hand and he bent down to talk to Celeste while someone snapped a bunch of pictures; now I have to keep an eye on the photo gallery on his website and prepare a letter asking him to remove any pictures of us if they show up ...
Next up were the local legislature officials: Paul Pinsky (shook hands, support, but he's unopposed); Tawanna Gaines (shook hands, support); Justin Ross (shook hands, not sure yet); followed by the sheriff, Michael Jackson (shook hands, support, unopposed).
Then we ran into Jack Johnson, the county executive. Counting on the mojo a handshake from me had during the 1994 D.C. mayoral race, I was happy to shake Johnson's hand.
Consider this an official endorsement from “Lifechanges ... Delayed”: Vote for Rushern Baker.
Celeste was ready to go, so we didn't get to see Baker or O'Malley, but we'll see if my glad-handing had any effect during the primaries next week and the general election in November ...
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