The political future of former Prince George's state senator Tommie Broadwater has been dealt another blow with the passage of a statewide constitutional amendment that precludes anyone ineligible to vote from running for public office.
Broadwater, who was convicted last year of food stamp fraud and thus automatically lost his seat in the Senate, had hoped to run for reelection in 1986.
He served four months in prison and is on probation until 1988, thus he is not allowed to vote until that time.
However, prior to the passage of the amendment, he would have been able to run as an independent in the 1986 election because the law did not bar persons ineligible to vote from running for office.
Broadwater said he is not willing to quit yet and believes that he can beat the new amendment.
"I've already filed to run as an independent candidate [with] over 3,000 signatures. . . . We think that the only way for this loss to affect us, it would have to be retroactive," he said.
Broadwater filed a petition with the signatures with the county Board of Elections last month in an attempt to register to run before the new amendment was passed. However, elections administrator Robert J. Antonetti said yesterday that he is not required to verify the signatures on that petition until three months before the 1986 primary, at which time Broadwater still would be ineligible to vote and therefore precluded from running for office under the amendment.
As county Democrats gathered at a Lanham hotel to watch election results Tuesday night, Broadwater, who is in the midst of bankruptcy proceedings, said the success of the amendment did not surprise him.
"How can you defeat apple pie, motherhood and a Chevrolet with no money?" he said.