Return to the People Control of Their Lives The Candidates Speak Out

THE BALTIMORE SUN

This country is burying young men who are too young to shave. Many of our children are afraid to go to school each day. Afraid!

While predators roam our streets, drugs are available in open-air markets and violence escalates, too many judges allow repeat or violent offenders pre-trial release, plea bargaining and probation. The terror continues.

Fifty percent of the 18-year-olds in this county can't read at the ninth-grade level or compute an eighth-grade math problem. "Value-free education" has been the rule for 30 years. And now too many have knowledge of neither math or morals.

There's a cancer eating at the heart of our cities. Crime, bureaucratic incompetence, taxes, regulations, paper work and bad schools are driving the producers out.

The welfare system's message is abundantly clear: "We will give you a check. In order to receive it you must not work, you must not save, you must have a child, and you must not marry the father of your children." Economic serfdom!

Real income for the average family has fallen 1.9 percent or $900 in the last year under the Clinton-Sarbanes economic plan.

If Paul Sarbanes ever came home between elections, he would hear these stories.

He would hear workers and watermen alike groaning under the burdens of recession and high taxes; farmers and small business pleading for relief from taxes, oppressive regulations and paperwork; and children and teachers begging for schools with discipline instead of drugs and violence.

But he doesn't come home. He has lost touch.

Instead, Paul Sarbanes voted for a trillion dollars in tax increases to "cut the deficit." Then he proposed $54 billion in new spending in this year alone. That's why the budget is out of control.

In 24 years in Congress, he has not introduced one successful bill to fight crime, create private-sector jobs, cut taxes, reduce spending or reform our schools. Not one bill. Now he wants to extend his term to 30 years. Why? If America is on the wrong track, and it is, the people who got us here are not the ones to get us out.

Paul Sarbanes' only answer is subsidy, subsidy, subsidy, spend, spend, spend, tax, tax, tax. I don't fault his integrity, but I clearly fault his judgment, and I fault his arrogance.

He refuses to come home, he refuses to engage in extended substantive debates, he won't even come to joint appearances. He is hiding, not from me, but from the people of Maryland.

What then should we do? What will I do?

I will act to cap all non-Social Security spending for five years. This will enable us to grow to a balanced budget. I will then fight to enact a balanced-budget amendment and line-item veto to keep it there. I will fight to limit the percentage of income government can take from the American people to 20 percent of income, and end the dishonesty of unfunded mandates and the taking of property by regulation without compensation.

The Rule: control spending, cut taxes, and create jobs. I have done it. As U.S. trade representative, I initiated agreements that brought more than 7,000 jobs to our state. I will do more.

I will insist that we get tough on crime, and that we teach basics, and basic values, in our schools -- values like character, honor, integrity and personal responsibility.

The Rule: punish predators, eliminate parole for violent criminals, repeat offenders and child molesters -- and give our young a grounding in character and personal responsibility. I have done this, too. I have been a leader of a foundation that works in urban schools. Our young people, largely minorities and poor youth, have 98 percent attendance, no crime, virtually no teen pregnancy, and 90 percent go on to college.

Let me do this for every young Marylander.

Why must we change? Why? Because America is going to die if it does not give individuals and families responsibility for, and control of, their own lives again.

I want to unleash the entrepreneurial and creative energy of Maryland with lower taxes, less spending, less regulation, and more security in our homes, our streets and our schools.

Give me six years to do this job. That's all -- then I'm out. I will leave you with a country closer to its fundamental values, more committed to its children and its families, and more vibrant with the excitement of freedom and opportunity.

Give me your hand. We can do it.

William E. Brock is the Republican candidate for U.S. Senator.

Throughout my public career, I have worked hard to provide Marylanders with dedicated, independent representation; representation based upon intelligence and integrity; representation which gives people the confidence that elected officials are there to serve the public interest.

The principles I learned growing up in Salisbury and which have guided my public life are opportunity and fairness. These are principles which I believe are fundamental to a decent and just society.

My parents came to America as immigrants, and they taught me about opportunity. The chance for people to move up the ladder of opportunity on the basis of their talents and abilities is basic to the American dream.

A job is the best social program. I have been a strong proponent of full employment. I supported the deficit-reduction program (opposed by Mr. Brock), which has brought Maryland economic growth and jobs. I have fought for lower interest rates so people have the chance to become home owners and small businesses have the chance to grow and prosper.

I have fought for quality education to provide each American the chance to advance regardless of a family's financial circumstances. Scholarships and loans and work opportunities were essential to my education and I intend that they be available for others.

Another principle that has guided me in public service is fairness. I have worked for a society based on equity and a strong sense of community. I learned it from my parents and teachers and coaches and many more who believed in treating others with decency and respect.

I have fought to end discrimination, so all Americans can participate fully in our society. By doing so, each of us realizes our full potential and society benefits from the contributions of all.

When we were in the middle of the Bush recession and when people who had worked all their lives were facing economic disaster, I led the fight to get an extension of unemployment benefits.

I worked hard for passage of the Family and Medical Leave Act so working Americans could take time off when a family member gets sick.

Mr. Brock opposed the recently enacted crime bill. I strongly supported it; this bill contains strong new measures to protect the right of all to be secure in their homes and neighborhoods.

On issue after issue, I have fought for Maryland and its citizens. I have authored measures to protect Maryland's environment, including efforts to enhance the restoration of our greatest natural asset, the Chesapeake Bay. I have worked to generate new jobs for Maryland by strengthening our transportation network -- the port, air, road and rail system; I developed the Export Enhancement Act, which brought Maryland the first regional Export Assistance Center in the nation.

My record is one of working hard for Maryland's hard-working middle-income families. William Brock's record is starkly different. In 14 years in the House and Senate from Tennessee, Mr. Brock failed to carry out his responsibilities. He missed more than one out of every five votes cast during his tenure. Working people know that if they miss one day a week at work they won't have a job for very long. My voting record in the Senate has been above 97 percent. I regard his no-show performance as a gross dereliction of duty.

When Mr. Brock did manage to show up, I believe Marylanders would be appalled with his votes. He voted against the start of Medicare, against the minimum wage. He voted to kill Head Start. He voted against the Clean Air Act and measures to clean up the Chesapeake Bay -- his environmental record was rated at 14 percent by the League of Conservation Voters. Mr. Brock even voted against the most fundamental right of all when he opposed the Voting Rights Act.

Marylanders deserve a senator who will run on his record, rather than away from it.

I know that to work for the people, you must stay in touch with them. I've held town meetings across the state from Western Maryland to the Eastern Shore. I have responded to the problems of individual constituents. Every night I leave Washington and return home to Baltimore to the same house I've lived in for 25 years.

If the people of Maryland want a senator who works hard for his state and its citizens, who believes in the principles of opportunity and fairness, who is responsive to the concerns of his constituents, and who is effective without a lot of fanfare -- then I hope you'll stand with me on November 8. And I'll keep working -- working hard -- for you every day of the next six years.

Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes is the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senator.

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