The winners of several important contests will not be known Tuesday night. State law prevents election officials from counting mail-in ballots until Thursday, and they could be decisive. As of Monday, nearly 169,000 Democrats had returned to vote by mail, while 38,000 Republicans had done the same. (Votes returned to Dropbox before polls close Tuesday night or postmarked by USPS by Tuesday will also be counted.)
Dems fight for governor
Democrats have been waiting for years to try to reclaim the governorship in a state that usually leans blue by dozens of percentage points.
Hogan — who comfortably won re-election in 2018 even in a strong year for Democrats — was an exception to that rule, but he cannot run for a third term. Still, Democrats need to pick their nominee before they can get down to the business of trying to flip the seat.
No one has Able to separate From the nine-person Democratic Party, but limited public opinion polls show three men making their way to the top of the pack: state Comptroller Peter Francot, former Labor Secretary Tom Perez and author Wes Moore. Only three candidates were consistently in double digits in the popular vote — but none routinely exceeded 20 percent.
Moore led the field Tuesday evening, but a winner is unlikely to be called Tuesday due to a significant number of mail-in ballots.
Moore — a first-time-candidate turned best-selling author and nonprofit executive — has led the field in fundraising and has some big-name endorsements, including Oprah Winfrey and, in a slightly less big-name category, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer. Franchot anchored his campaign on his long tenure in the state — while brushing aside accusations that he was too bitter with Hogan to win over Democratic voters. Perez, who also chaired the Democratic National Committee when the party flipped the House, Senate and White House in 2018 and 2020, has rallied labor support in the state to fuel his bid.
Several candidates with prominent profiles are also in the field, including former Obama-era education secretary John King and former state attorney general Doug Kanzler.
Trump-endorsed Cox wins
Trump-endorsed Cox clinched the party’s nomination Tuesday night in the Republican gubernatorial primary.
Victory for Cox, A longtime supporter of Trump’s who wholeheartedly bought into Trump’s repeated lies about fraud in the 2020 election, The former president won his battle with Hogan over the direction of the party at the state and national level.
Hogan supported Kelly Schulz, a former state lawmaker who served in his cabinet until earlier this year. The Hogan political machine mobilized for Schulz, with the governor’s top advisers lending a hand to Schulz’s campaign.
“Stop getting rid of Rhino Larry Hogan and he’s trying to put another Rhino in office, Kelly Schulz,” Trump said in a statement on Monday.
The Democratic Governors Association dominated the final weeks of the race Dropped a multi-million ad campaign “Attaching” Cox as too loyal to Trump. The TGA has insisted it has a head start in the general election, putting Cox in the lead despite popular polls. Before Tuesday Cox and Schulz show dead ends. But the campaign was widely seen as an attempt to promote a serious candidate in the Republican primary, hoping it would be easier to defeat Cox in the general election.
A pair of home matches
There are two big House primaries on Tuesday, one on each side of the aisle.
In Maryland’s 6th District, Republicans have chosen a candidate to challenge wealthy Democrat Rep. David Drone, nominating state Assemblyman Neil Parrott. Drone’s district was redrawn to be more friendly to Republicans. Opportunity in the fall.
Despite endorsements from across the party — from Hogan to House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Donald Trump Jr. — Parrott Handley won the primary. Flows for Matthew Foldy, a 25-year-old one-time staffer for House Republicans’ major super PAC. Parrott instead relied primarily on local institutional support.
But Trone will be a tough general election candidate, in no small part because of his immense personal resources stemming from his business, a popular bar chain. Drone has already lent credit to his campaign $12.5 million this election cycleLooking forward to a tough fight in November.
Under the old map lines, Drone beat Parrott by nearly 20 points in 2020.
The key Democratic House race comes in the state’s 4th District, a majority black district anchored by the suburbs of the nation’s capital, replacing Democrat Rep. Anthony Brown. Brown, a former lieutenant governor who lost the 2014 gubernatorial race to Hogan, is running for state attorney general.
The deep-blue district primary next to Brown is a two-person race between former Rep. Donna Edwards and former county attorney Glenn Ivey. That race has quietly attracted $8 million in outside spending — the largest share of which has come from the United Democracy Project, which is affiliated with the hawkish, pro-Israel group AIPAC. That super PAC has spent about $6 million attacking Edwards and boosting Ivy.
The ad campaigns were not broadly about Israel or foreign policy, instead portraying Edwards as an ineffective lawmaker during his time in Congress. AIPAC and Edwards have been around for a long time Some of his votes on Israel were hostileIncluding the failed 2016 Senate campaign.
Edwards has some backup from progressive organizations like the J Street Action Fund, a more liberal pro-Israel group, and the political arm of the League of Conservation Voters. There are also some pro-Ivey costs from crypto-aligned Web3 Forward.
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