Laurel resident Cathy Johnson Pendleton believes a change is needed in Maryland’s Fifth Congressional District. “We need new leadership,” she said. “I’m not seeing that Steny Hoyer is doing such a wonderful job.”

Pendleton, a Democrat, is challenging Hoyer in the April 3 Primary Election.

“New insight, new ideas,” said Pendleton, who cites her life experiences of living in different locations as a way to bring a new perspective to Capitol Hill. “I’m focusing on District 5 but I want to help other places, too,” Pendleton stated. She believes the federal government needs to help small businesses grow with tax breaks and help with the high cost of real estate. As for big business, Pendleton wants to “encourage corporations to move to Maryland. Encourage them to locate in areas where real estate prices and taxes are low. These are areas that are hurting for jobs anyway.”

Pendleton’s web site includes her biography which chronicles her tumultuous childhood. As an adult, the Washington, DC native has worked for the federal government and earned a bachelor of special studies degree from Cornell College in the Midwest. Pendleton is the founder of GAM-JAM Publishing Company, whose mission is to aid authors finding the pathway to publishing arduous.

Pendleton has been involved in the political campaigns of candidates of varying political ideologies. In 1980 she volunteered to work for Ronald Reagan’s successful campaign for the presidency.  Later, Pendleton was involved with the presidential campaigns of John Glenn, Bill Clinton, Ross Perot and John Kerry. She was also a volunteer in Gov. Martin O’Malley’s campaign.

When discussing her fiscal philosophy, Pendleton admits “I’m a tightwad now.” However she admits that many of the things for which she advocates—healthcare, education reform and defense spending— are costly. “I would find a way to be creative,” said Pendleton. “Let’s find out how we can get the money we need to get us out of this debt. Congress is spending a lot of money because they keep getting into predicaments that force them to spend too much money. I’m concerned about putting the burden on our children and grandchildren.”

Pendleton stated she is also in favor of the controversial Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) that was passed in 2010. “I’m all for it,” she said. “I am for helping people who are suffering.” Pendleton also favors the measures of the bi