Catonsville lawyer Rick Martel wasn't planning to run this year for one of the three open seats for the House of Delegates from District 12. With a number of family events in December, such as the birth of a new grandson and his daughter's wedding, he wasn't sure he'd have enough time to run a campaign.
However, when Joe Hooe and Gordon Bull, the Republican candidates for the seats now held by Democratic Dels. Liz Bobo, Stephen DeBoy and James Malone, approached him about running, he said it gave him something to think about.
"I agreed to complete the ticket and run for the House of Delegates because there are no incumbents," Martel said.
Martel ran two unsuccessful campaigns in 2006 and 2010 against incumbent state Sen. Edward Kasemeyer in District 12.
His reason for running in those years was the same for why he's running for state delegate in 2014: "We have basically one party rule in Maryland," Martel said.
"I think there needs to be more of a balance of power and new blood elected so there's more of a dialogue [in Annapolis]," Martel said.
Martel lives in Catonsville with his wife of 33 years, Kim Martel. The couple has five children and three grandchildren.
He's a member of St. Agnes Catholic Church, of Lamb of God Ecumenical Christian Community and on the board of directors of Catonsville Emergency Food Ministries.
In 1983, he earned his law degree from the University of Baltimore School of Law. He earned his bachelor of arts degree in economics and political science from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County in 1980.
Martel said he'd like to decrease taxes in order to let businesses grow and would also like to decrease the size of government.
"I think we benefit everybody by lessening the role of government," Martel said.
He said the core principles he believes in are individual rights and personal responsibilities.
While he hasn't always been a Republican, he's grown more conservative as he's gotten older, Martel said.
"I changed parties back in 2006 because I really feel like the Democrat Party left me," Martel said.
Martel said support from the community in past elections has been encouraging.
In 2010, he captured more than 41 percent of the vote, which was a considerable amount of support, Martel said.
"I think I have a chance to win this election. I wouldn't run if I didn't think I had a chance to win," Martel said.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun