State Del. Frederick C. Rummage (D-Prince George's) has been raising campaign funds from business interests that are regulated by the committee he chairs in what several State House sources say is an attempt to finance a race to become House speaker in 1986.

Rummage, chairman of the House Economic Matters Committee, has collected about $15,000 from Maryland banking, real estate and insurance interests at a series of small fund-raisers held at the home of a wealthy Anne Arundel County podiatrist.

According to a number of State House sources, Rummage has told them he intends to use the proceeds from the three fund-raisers and others in the future to aid the reelection efforts of other legislators so they will support him for speaker in two years.

"He wants to raise $50,000 and pass it out in 1986 to people who will support him," said one legislative source.

Rummage denied that he plans to use the money to win votes for the speaker post, and he said he is raising funds now only to finance his reelection. "I told the speaker in the middle of the 1983 session that I thought it was highly inappropriate to make any noise about running for his position until it is declared vacant, and I've adhered to that religiously," he said.

But a number of Annapolis insiders said they had been told point-blank by Rummage that he is building a war chest to finance a speaker's bid. Rummage has $22,000 in hand, about double what election records indicate he spent on his election effort in 1982.

Rummage's fund-raising campaign is the most overt example of the maneuvering already under way in Annapolis to succeed House Speaker Benjamin L. Cardin, who is widely expected to run for governor in 1986.

Cardin, determined to prevent the brewing speaker's race from undermining his authority in the next two years, has on several occasions instructed his committee chairmen to refrain from open politicking. Several of the six House chairmen are on the long list of legislators with ambitions to become speaker.

"I won't permit any person I have appointed in the leadership to be involved in any jockeying for speaker at this stage," said Cardin.

Cardin's apparent intention of running for governor, combined with the fact he has no obvious heir apparent, has kindled ambitions throughout the 141-member House. "There are 40 candidates and 40 compromise candidates," said Del. William R. McCaffrey (D-Prince George's).

Rummage is not considered one of the front-runners, and he is expected to have a difficulty holding his delegate's seat in a district with a growing black population.

The race for speaker "appears ludicrous to everyone except Fred," said one Prince George's County politician. "What he doesn't realize is that he'll have trouble getting reelected. Instead of running for speaker, he should be running for the county line." P.G. Delegate May Run for Speaker Frederick Rummage's Campaign Funds Raise Questions By Tom Kenworthy Washington Post Staff Writer

ANNAPOLIS -- State Del. Frederick C. Rummage (D-Prince George's) has been raising campaign funds from business interests that are regulated by the committee he chairs in what several State House sources say is an attempt to finance a race to become House speaker in 1986.

Rummage, chairman of the House Economic Matters Committee, has collected about $15,000 from Maryland banking, real estate and insurance interests at a series of small fund-raisers held at the home of a wealthy Anne Arundel County podiatrist.

According to a number of State House sources, Rummage has told them he intends to use the proceeds from the three fund-raisers and others in the future to aid the reelection efforts of other legislators so they will support him for speaker in two years.

"He wants to raise $50,000 and pass it out in 1986 to people who will support him," said one legislative source.

Rummage denied that he plans to use the money to win votes for the speaker post, and he said he is raising funds now only to finance his reelection. "I told the speaker in the middle of the 1983 session that I thought it was highly inappropriate to make any noise about running for his position until it is declared vacant, and I've adhered to that religiously," he said.

But a number of Annapolis insiders said they had been told point-blank by Rummage that he is building a war chest to finance a speaker's bid. Rummage has $22,000 in hand, about double what election records indicate he spent on his election effort in 1982.

Rummage's fund-raising campaign is the most overt example of the maneuvering already under way in Annapolis to succeed House Speaker Benjamin L. Cardin, who is widely expected to run for governor in 1986.

Cardin, determined to prevent the brewing speaker's race from undermining his authority in the next two years, has on several occasions instructed his committee chairmen to refrain from open politicking. Several of the six House chairmen are on the long list of legislators with ambitions to become speaker.

"I won't permit any person I have appointed in the leadership to be involved in any jockeying for speaker at this stage," said Cardin.

Cardin's apparent intention of running for governor, combined with the fact he has no obvious heir apparent, has kindled ambitions throughout the 141-member House. "There are 40 candidates and 40 compromise candidates," said Del. William R. McCaffrey (D-Prince George's).

Rummage is not considered one of the front-runners, and he is expected to have a difficulty holding his delegate's seat in a district with a growing black population.

The race for speaker "appears ludicrous to everyone except Fred," said one Prince George's County politician. "What he doesn't realize is that he'll have trouble getting reelected. Instead of running for speaker, he should be running for the county line."