- The Washington Times - Friday, October 28, 2005

BALTIMORE (AP) — John P. Sarbanes, the son of Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes, has announced his candidacy for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District seat, saying health care and public education reform would be his top priorities.

Mr. Sarbanes joins a crowded field of Democrats running for the seat being vacated by Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin, a Democrat. The 3rd Congressional District includes parts of Baltimore city and Anne Arundel, Baltimore and Howard counties.

Mr. Cardin is running for the Senate seat held by Mr. Sarbanes’ father, who is retiring.

The younger Sarbanes currently heads the health care practice at the Baltimore law firm Venable LLP. He served for seven years as a special assistant to state schools Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick and as a volunteer board member of the advocacy group the Public Justice Center.

This is his first run for public office, and he said he is following his father’s example.

“What I learned from him is that community service is a very high commitment,” Mr. Sarbanes said Wednesday. “His example to me is that you can make a difference in public service and you can do it with integrity.”

Former Baltimore Health Commissioner Peter Beilenson, state Sen. Paula Hollinger, Delegate Neil Quinter and Anne Arundel County Council member Bill Burlison also are running for the 3rd District seat.

Anne Arundel County Executive Janet S. Owens and Mr. Cardin’s nephew, state Delegate John Cardin, are considering campaigns.

“I respect them all,” Mr. Sarbanes said of the other candidates. “I am looking forward to engaging in a respectful and constructive discussion on the issues that affect us.”

No Republicans have declared for the race.

Mr. Sarbanes said a national initiative is needed to fill public schools with talented, dedicated teachers and principals. He said “it was a mistake to go into Iraq” and that it was time to discuss how to bring the troops home.

And he said the United States must commit to providing universal health care.

“The fact that 46 million people are uninsured, with millions more underinsured, is not only morally wrong and economically irresponsible,” Mr. Sarbanes said. “In terms of our standing on the international scene, it is downright embarrassing.”

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