Arundel seniors group warms to Democrats


Proving political activism is ageless, about 150 elderly people turned out yesterday for a breakfast to support Democrats Barbara Mikulski and Tom McMillen in their re-election bids.

The group, mostly from Anne Arundel County and the southern neighborhoods of Baltimore City, went to Michael's Eighth Avenue sporting campaign buttons and enthusiasm.

"I was born and raised a Democrat," said Walter Miles, from Baltimore's Curtis Bay neighborhood. "They can be trusted."

Emma Tolodziecki, also from Curtis Bay, agreed. "I like what they say they are going to do. They are down-to-earth people."

Walter Bryl, from Curtis Bay, said he attended the breakfast because he is concerned about proposals to cut Social Security benefits.

"We worked for 10 to 15 cents an hour in the 1930s. We depend on that," he said.

Ms. Mikulski and Mr. McMillen both promised to work for the elderly, fight efforts to tax or cut Social Security benefits and work to improve the Medicare program.

"You know who's going to go after the senior citizens -- the Republican Party," Mr. McMillen said. "You know who is going to go after the health-care profiteers -- the Democrats."

Both took the opportunity to plug the Clinton-Gore ticket and stress the importance of sending a Democratic team to Washington.

Most of those at the breakfast were loyal Democrats who said they attended to socialize and to hear the latest information from the campaign.

"These guys are great," said Marilyn Halley of Odenton.

At least one Republican in the crowd also was swayed. Ruby Dailey, a registered Republican from Odenton, said she intends to vote for Bill Clinton, Ms. Mikulski and Mr. McMillen. "It sounds like they'll be the best," she said.

The candidates will have only a few more chances to persuade voters in Anne Arundel.

The biggest event will be a debate at 7 p.m. tomorrow at Anne Arundel Community College. All of the congressional candidates are scheduled to attend.

Here are other forthcoming candidate appearances:

1st District

Wayne Gilchrest, Republican. Today: 7:30 a.m., Republican Breakfast Club, Middleton Tavern; 8:30 a.m., Anne Arundel Trade Council; 12:30 p.m., National Association of Retired Federal Employees, Magic Dish Restaurant, Severna Park; 2 p.m., Youth Services Bureau, Harundale Mall. Tomorrow: 7:30 a.m., Thursday Breakfast Club, Magic Dish Restaurant. Friday: 10 a.m., Maryland Municipal League, Naval Academy Officers Club, Annapolis. Saturday: 8:30 a.m., town meeting, Odenton Shopping Center; 10 a.m., Patuxent Boulevard dedication, Annapolis; noon, campaigning in Arnold; 3 p.m., Sandy Point State Park; 5 p.m., Community Halloween Party, Annapolis. Sunday: 9:30 a.m., Annapolis Presbyterian Church; 11 a.m., Cecil Memorial Church.

Tom McMillen, Democrat. Today: 7 a.m., Westinghouse Oceanics Division; 8:25 a.m., civics class, Annapolis High School; 9:15 a.m., Ginger Cove Senior Center, Annapolis; 11 a.m., O'Malley Senior Center, Odenton. Friday: 7:45 a.m., Friday Morning Breakfast Club, Crate Cafe, Annapolis.

2nd District

Incumbent Helen Delich Bentley, Republican. Sunday: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., open house at headquarters, 309 Mountain Road.

Michael Hickey, Democrat. Today: 7:30 p.m., Stony Creek Democratic Club.

5th District

Incumbent Steny Hoyer, Democrat. Today: 7:15 p.m., Deale Chamber of Commerce, Chesapeake Yacht Club. Sunday: 2 p.m., rally at Chaney's Promise.

Larry Hogan, Republican. Today: 8 p.m., Deale Chamber of Commerce, Chesapeake Yacht Club.

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