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Mitchell Raised the Most Money in the 44th District Delegates Race

August 20, 2010
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Former City Councilman and 2007 mayoral candidate Keiffer Mitchell so far has raised more than $35,000 to fund his effort to unseat an incumbent delegate in Baltimore’s 44th Legislative District, according to campaign finance records. That’s the most of the eight candidates in the Democratic primary. But Mitchell has also spent about half of that amount, leaving him with the second-most money in the bank behind two-term incumbent Keith Haynes, who has nearly $29,000 on hand.

The biggest spender so far has been one-term incumbent Melvin Stukes, also a former Baltimore City councilman. He’s spent nearly $20,000 and raised about $12,500–$4,500 of which came in on one day, Aug. 3, from three Baltimore-based towing companies: Frankford Towing, Mel’s Towing and Service Center, and Ted’s Towing Services. These are significant not only because the three donations comprise such a large amount of his total take, but because Stukes’ main accomplishment during his four legislative sessions has been to establish a state task force to study towing practices.

Haynes raised $13,625 this reporting period. Most of it–$10,650–came from selling tickets to a fundraiser. And much of that–$3,000–came from Armand, Victoria, and Alexandra Volta of Catonsville. Armand Volta is a personal injury lawyer with the Law Offices of Peter G. Angelos, where Haynes also works.

Ruth Kirk, who’s been a 44th District delegate since 1983, raised $4,675, the bulk of it from two sources: $2,500 from the Maryland Insurance Council PAC and $1,000 from SEIU DC/MD State Council No. 54 PAC.

Billy Taylor hasn’t raised much money–a total of $3,445–but it comes from a high-profile list of local donors, including former Congressman Kweisi Mfume, former mayor Kurt Schmoke, former Housing commissioner Dan Henson, former state’s attorney Stu Simms, and law professor (and long-time political guru) Larry Gibson. Taylor’s largest single donation, $1,000, came from Henry Baines of Stop Shop Save Food Markets.

Three other candidates in the Democratic primary–Chris Blake, Gary English, and Arlene Fisher–have little money to work with, though there is still time for them to raise and spend money before the Sept. 14 primary.

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