That was an interesting shindig Gerry L. Brewster hosted on Flag Day at the Towson American Legion hall.
Mr. Brewster, the freshman state delegate from the Towson area, held his first political fund-raiser since being elected in 1990. About 650 people attended, paying $40 a head. The delegate reported a profit of $18,000 for his coffers.
Such rubber-chicken feasts are standard in local politics, and it's just as common to see Democrats and Republicans schmoozing one another at these events, especially in Baltimore County, where the line between the two parties often blurs.
Still, there was something different about last weekend's bash for Mr. Brewster, the son of former U.S. Senator Daniel B. Brewster. The usual bipartisan mingling took place, but the minglers included an unusual number of prominent figures, such as Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes, Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin, Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Baltimore City State's Attorney Stuart O. Simms and former city mayor Thomas D'Alesandro III on the Democratic side, and Baltimore County Executive Roger B. Hayden, county council chairman William A. Howard IV and county Sheriff Norman Pepersack among the Republicans.
House Majority Leader D. Bruce Poole drove two hours from Washington County to be on hand. Even Democrat Michael Gisriel, the man Brewster beat out for his legislative seat two years ago, came to the fund-raiser.
All this for a 34-year-old delegate who has yet to set the world on fire during his 1 1/2 years in office?
The impressive list of party-goers might be explained by the perception among some observers that young Mr. Brewster has the makings of a future star of Maryland politics. He has a name well-known in state political circles. A graduate of the Gilman School and a cum laude alumnus of Princeton University, he has plenty of smarts, along with the successful pol's penchant for self-promotion. He has, in his father, a financial backer, a political counselor and a conduit to some of the state's heavy hitters. Indeed, more than a few people have pointed to former Sen. Brewster's ties to Governor William Donald Schaefer as a key reason for the governor's creation of a single-member legislative district in Towson -- for none other than Gerry Brewster.
Many of the politicians, officials and community leaders at the Brewster fund-raiser probably had these factors in mind when they decided to pay homage to the young delegate. Heaven knows they weren't there for the rubber chicken.