The state senator’s race in District 23 is proving to be another interesting one. Douglas J.J. Peters appears to be entrenched as the incumbent; however, there are two challengers determined to take his crown.

Peters, a former Prince George’s County and Bowie City Councilman, is the current chair of the Prince George’s Senate Delegation in the State house. Peters worked in concert with other members of the county’s delegation to get the disparity grant to ease the budget woes and co-sponsored a bill that as of July 1 is providing $18 million in property tax relief to residents.

“From speaking to residents, the biggest issue when I go door to door is, ‘My market value’s dropped in my house, my assessment has either stayed the same or gone up and my taxes have gone up,’” Peters said. “So we needed to lower taxes seeing how market values have gone down.”

That kind of experience and groundwork can go a long way in his re-election campaign. However, his competitors aren’t sure he’s really the right man for the job anymore.

Bobby Henry is a Prince George’s native and an attorney in county. He unsuccessfully challenged Peters four years ago. He’s back again because he says the same issues which plagued Prince George’s County and the state four and eight years ago remain today.

“A large part of the problem here in Prince George’s County and in the state of Maryland, as a whole, is we don’t get problems taken care of,” Henry said. “Unfortunately they just continue to fester year after year and term after term. In the case of education, it’s decade after decade.”

Henry says it’s time residents of Prince George’s get a candidate ready to not only listen to their issues, but get the necessary work done as well.

“The problem right now is there’s no resolve,” Henry said. “We have individuals in office who are just glad to be there. I’m just not running to be a senator and say I’m glad to be there. Being there is not enough. I have an obligation to those that gave me the opportunity to learn the legal profession to provide for my community.”

Darrell Carrington, former campaign lobbyist, comes to Prince George’s County by way of New Jersey. His first visit to the area was during the Washington Redskins’ last Super Bowl run in 1991 and he said the energy of the county was like a magnet to him.

“I remember coming here and feeling the enthusiasm of the folks here,” Carrington said. “It’s just the enormous opportunity that we have in Prince George’s County in terms of a community that has a tremendous upside. We need to have leadership to make sure that upside is realized.”

Carrington says he brings that “different kind of leadership” and believes neither one of his competitors is capable of bringing it to this position. “I took a look at who was running in District 23 and I realized there really isn’t a progressive voice,” he said.

“In 2010 I think it’s important that we have people that respect a woman’s right to choose and is aware of women’s issues. Looking at the people who filed ahead of me I thought it was really important to have a progressive voice in this election.”

Also filed in the race is Upper Marlboro resident, Mike Anderson. Anderson did not respond to requests for interviews or information by AFRO press time.

 

George Barnette

Special to the AFRO