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On the Road...And the Airwaves

Democratic Senate candidate Ben Cardin began his advertising campaign in the Washington media market today, airing a biographical ad on network TV.

Two other Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate--American University Professor Allan Lichtman and Montgomery County businessman Joshua Rales-- are trying to jump-start their long-shot bids this week with bus tours across the state. A third, Dennis Rasmussen, is traveling by boat and Winnebago around the state this week.

With just four weeks until the Sept. 12 primary, Cardin and former congressman Kweisi Mfume are leading the field of 18 candidates, but polls show many of the voters remain undecided. Cardin began advertising in the Baltimore media market last week with a spot highlighting his 40 years in Maryland politics--20 of that in Annapolis and another 20 in Congress. He'll run the same ad on Washington networks, spending about $240,000 on the four networks this week.

Rales, a millionaire real estate investor from Potomac, launched an aggressive television advertising campaign across the state last month and promises to stay on the air through the primary. He's augmenting that with his his "Driving Change" bus tour that started Friday in Silver Spring and will end in Baltimore this Sunday.

The tour brought him to Southern Maryland today and will take him elsewhere in the Washington region later this week.

Lichtman, a history professor at American University and CNN analyst, bought a yellow propane-powered school bus that he has painted for the campaign, hoping to reinforce Lichtman's experience as a lifetime educator.

The "BUSting into the Capitol Tour," kicked off today in Annapolis, where Lichtman planned to wave at street corners in the morning, campaign door-to-door, host a luncheon at Phillips Seafood Restaurant at the City Dock and meet with local business owners.

Rasmussen, a former Baltimore County executive, starts tomorrow morning in Timonium addressing a seniors group. Later in the day he'll take a 47-foot yacht from Middle River to the Baltimore Harbor, where he'll continue his campaigning before being picked up by his Winnebago.

Philip Rucker

By Phyllis Jordan  |  August 14, 2006; 1:23 PM ET
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That's why Rasmussen will be our next Senator - he truly understands the power of driving a 47 foot yacht as a way to ingratiate himself to Democratic primary voters. None of these other guys seem to get it. Go Rasumuusen!!! And nothing says victory like a home-painted propane powered school bus..... These guys have the finger on the pulse.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2006 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Why would anyone tout a 40 year record as a politician? Sounds like business as usual is all we can expect from Cardin.

Posted by: BG from PG | August 14, 2006 8:27 PM | Report abuse

I agree. The last thing we need is a career politican, or a career politician wannabe as our Senator. Vote Kevin Zeese.

Posted by: Marylander | August 14, 2006 8:27 PM | Report abuse

The last thing we need is a green party candidate who will draw enough votes away from the Democratic nominee to give Michael Steele the victory. Vote for anyone but Zeese.

Posted by: E | August 14, 2006 8:52 PM | Report abuse

So much for Democrats supporting democracy, eh?

Posted by: Marylander | August 15, 2006 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Why is it when a Democrat attacks a Green we are accused of being anti-democratic. Maybe members of the Green Party need to grow up and not be so sensitive. If your message is so paper thin that it falls apart with a simple swipe at your campaign tactics maybe you aren't ready for primetime.

Posted by: Democracy? | August 15, 2006 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Or maybe they don't take as much special interest money as the Democrats to get their message out.

Posted by: BG from PG | August 15, 2006 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Not so; note Carl Romanelli the Green Party candidate in Pennsylvania for the Senate whose ballot effort was funded mostly by the GOP who know it would split some of the Democratic vote. (And that money may have been wasted, judging from the apparent fraud in his petitions that may well keep him off the ballot.)

And enough with this whining about opposing democracy if you oppose the Greens. Many of these Green candidates are either deluded ego-trippers (Nader) or GOP tools (Romanelli.)

Posted by: MHK919 | August 16, 2006 2:56 PM | Report abuse

At least Rasmussen has figured out that everyone is vacationing and gone out to see them..Go Rasmussen. As a boater who saw him in Farley Creek a week ago I like his style and down to earth approach

Posted by: gerry | August 18, 2006 10:46 AM | Report abuse

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