Howard County Maryland Blog

Local Politics and Current Events

An open letter to Ken Ulman & Steve Wallis

Posted by David Keelan on Wednesday, September 27, 2006

In case you didn’t catch it this letter appears in The View Newspapers today September 28th.  It seems to have been written and sent to Mssrs. Ulman and Wallis shortly after September 14th.

Candidates Should Hold Discussion on Growth

To: Ken Ulman

From: Christopher J. Merdon

cc: Steven Wallis

I recently read an article in the Washington Post (September 14, 2006, headlined “Executive Race Rivals Eye General Election”) concerning the issue of growth in Howard County. You are quoted as saying, “I’m ready for this discussion. I’ve been waiting for it for quite a while.”

You should not have to wait any longer and neither should the citizens of Howard County. I would like to propose that you join me in a focused public discussion concerning growth. If you agree, I suggest that we invite Independent candidate Steve Wallis to join us.  Howard County’s voters deserve a full and honest discussion of this very important issue.

Our respective campaign teams can work out the details for such a public discussion to suit all three candidates. Please contact me to begin this process.

This letter was referenced in a Baltimore Sun article on Sunday, September 24th

Invitation to debate

Republican county executive candidate Christopher J. Merdon said Friday that he had sent a three-paragraph open letter dated Sept. 19 to Ken Ulman, his Democratic rival, with a copy to independent candidate C. Stephen Wallis, suggesting a public discussion on the issue of growth.Merdon said that while the three candidates have participated in numerous candidate forums, and more are scheduled, “I want to have a debate just on growth and development.” The forums mix all the issues, he said.

Ulman said he would be happy to debate growth, and he said he and Merdon have spoken privately about debates apart from forums. But Ulman said Friday he had not seen Merdon’s letter, and he wondered why his fellow county councilman didn’t just call him directly.

“He has my cell phone number, and I have his,” Ulman said.

Ulman said the letter was ” a bit disingenuous.”

“I’m not going to respond to any letter,” he said.

Wallis said he knew nothing about the letter until called by a reporter.

“It’s ridiculous,” he said. “It’s nothing less than a political ploy. Growth has come up at virtually every forum.”

I would not be surprised if the letters were thrown out unopened because they were mistaken for campaign literature.

As to Mr. Wallis’ complaint that the issue has come up at every forum.  He is correct.  My problem is that it doesn’t get enough time or attention.  I think a one hour debate on growth in Howard County and only on growth in Howard County is a great idea. 

How much attention does it get in a forum?  Ten minutes?  Twenty minutes tops?  And that would be between all the candidates represented at the forum not just Mssrs. Merdon, Ulman and Wallis.

I hope they accept the invitation.  They can have it at my house if need be.

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2 Responses to “An open letter to Ken Ulman & Steve Wallis”

  1. ed said

    I’ll be there.

  2. […] As I said in my previous post on this topic. As to Mr. Wallis’ complaint that the issue has come up at every forum.  He is correct.  My problem is that it doesn’t get enough time or attention.  I think a one hour debate on growth in Howard County and only on growth in Howard County is a great idea.  […]

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