Sun colleague Liz Kay reports:

Four primary challengers for president of the Baltimore City Council gathered outside City Hall Monday afternoon to protest the lack of media attention to their race.


Local organizations held more than a dozen forums for the mayoral candidates in the primary Tuesday election Tuesday. But the one forum scheduled for the council president candidates was canceled by the League of Women Voters when the venue -- the downtown branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library -- was closed following the earthquake earlier that day.

Thomas A. Kiefaber, one of several Democrats challenging Council President Bernard C. "Jack" Young, said the lack of a debate favors the incumbent.

Kiefaber, the former owner of the Senator Theater, organized the news conference that included two other Democratic candidates, Leon Winthly Hector Sr. and Renold B. Smith, as well as Republican contender Armand F. Girard.

"They don't even know who we are," he said.

Kiefaber said that he knew media often aren't able to cover the district races closely, but he was disappointed in the coverage of city council president, a citywide post. He said the position is significant in part because the last two city council presidents were appointed mayor.

"Nobody knows anything about the second-highest elected office," he said.

Smith said the candidates had joined together to confront a shared challenge."We want to support each other because we have not gotten support from the media," said Smith. "You can't vote the same way every election and expect the same results."