Woman runs for House seat as write-in candidate


A state social services counselor from Bolton Hill is running as a write-in candidate for state delegate from the city's 44th District -- though election officials cannot remember a write-in winner in the city in decades.

Sarah Matthews, an eight-year member of the city Democratic Central Committee, said she would push for better services for senior citizens, better treatment for AIDS patients and more funding for public safety if she is elected to the district from the central and western sections of the city.

She is waging an uphill battle against Democratic incumbents Ruth M. Kirk and Jeffrey A. Paige, as well as Keith E. Haynes, a challenger who won the third spot on the Democratic ballot in last week's primary.

Matthews said she saw Haynes, a lawyer, as vulnerable because he moved to the city in June and squeaked by Jennifer L. Coates by 35 votes.

Matthews also faces Republicans Arthur W. Cuffie Jr. and James E. Peters Jr.

A Chicago native who moved to Baltimore in 1989, Matthews, 51, has worked as a part-time legislative aide for Paige, attending community meetings and responding to complaints from voters.

For the past 3 1/2 years, Matthews has worked as a constituent services worker for the state Department of Social Services, helping answer complaints about the agency's programs.

Before that, she was a fifth-grade teacher at Eutaw-Marshburn Elementary School in Bolton Hill.

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