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Schaefer Bows Out

William Donald Schaefer, 84, the Maryland political patriarch who served four terms as Baltimore's mayor and two as governor, conceded defeat this morning.

The comptroller had cake and coffee with his staff early, and then met reporters for a news conference that was quintessential Schaefer.

He joked (or maybe not) about running for mayor of Ocean City, said certain reporters "make me puke," reflected longingly on his years as mayor of Baltimore, and lamented the way his career came to a close.

Asked how he'd like to be remembered, he said: "Two words. 'He cared.' That's all."

Schaefer had nothing unkind to say about Peter Franchot, the Montgomery delegate who won the Democratic nomination.

"He ran a good race, and I wish him luck," Schaefer said. "If you're not the best man, you don't win."

He was not so gracious about his other opponent, Anne Arundel County Executive Janet Owens, whom he said he once counted as a friend.

"The toughest thing in this political game is when your friends turn on you. That's very rarely happened to me. This was an awakening."

By  |  September 13, 2006; 1:04 PM ET
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