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Ballot Stuffing

Unplugged

Posted 7/23/2003

To listen to him discuss the issues facing the 10th District, you would almost think City Council candidate Charlie Metz created his platform while sitting in front of the tube watching David Simon's The Wire . "We need jobs," he says. "There is so much unused industrial space in this area, Brooklyn, Curtis Bay, Fairfield. They've really forgotten this area. Tourism isn't doing well, but the city focuses on it. You have to remember, people who don't work don't pay taxes."

Metz, an Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) PAC-endorsed candidate, talks about how he'd like to draw more light industry to the harbor--especially communities south of the harbor--and how he'd like to get a "Buy Baltimore" campaign up and running that would draw attention and commerce back to the city. The more business the city can drum up in its industrial zones, he notes, the more jobs there will be for the average, working-class family. In turn, he says, more prosperous communities will benefit because they won't be stuck footing the bill for vacant houses, poor neighborhoods, and fallow industrial land in floundering parts of the city. Metz notes that he'll be going on a "tour of shame" with ACORN this summer to draw attention to the problems facing Baltimore industry and how they affect the city on a larger scale--two themes that occur repeatedly in The Wire this season.

But when someone pointed that out to Metz recently, he looked confused. "The Wire?" he asked. "I wouldn't know--I've never seen it."

It might not be a bad idea for Metz to get HBO for the summer--it might give him some more ideas on which he can advance his campaign.

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