In Maryland, Moore aims to be state's first Black governor

Democrats Wes Moore and U.S. Rep Anthony Brown are aiming to make Maryland history

Brian Witte
Tuesday 08 November 2022 14:04 GMT

Democrats Wes Moore and U.S. Rep Anthony Brown aimed to make Maryland history Tuesday, with Moore hoping to become the state’s first Black governor and Brown running to be Maryland’s first Black attorney general.

Moore, 44, is running against Republican Dan Cox, a state legislator endorsed by former President Donald Trump, in a state where Democrats outnumber Republicans 2-1. Trump lost to President Joe Biden in 2020 in Maryland after receiving only 32% of the vote.

Moore and Cox are running to replace Republican Gov. Larry Hogan, who is term limited.

The race has been marked by Hogan’s refusal to support Cox, whom he has described as “a QAnon whack job” unfit for office.

Cox organized bus trips for protesters to Washington for the “Stop the Steal” rally that preceded the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. Cox has also said Biden’s victory should not have been certified and tweeted that former Vice President Mike Pence was a “traitor.” Cox later deleted the tweet and apologized.

In their only debate, Moore described Cox as “an extremist election-denier whose rhetoric and his policies are not only dangerous and divisive, but will take our state backwards.”

Cox described Moore, a best-selling author, as “a phony,” criticizing him for saying he lived in Baltimore longer than he did in his book. He also criticized him for not debating him more than once.

Democrats are hungry to regain the governor’s office after eight years of Republican control.

Of the 36 governor’s races this year, Maryland and Massachusetts represent the best chances for Democrats to regain a governor’s office at a time when the GOP holds a 28-22 edge in governor’s seats.

Moore, a former combat veteran and former CEO of one of the nation’s largest anti-poverty organizations, campaigned on creating equal opportunity for Maryland residents.

“This can be Maryland’s moment,” Moore said during during his debate with Cox. “We have amazing people and incredible potential, but not everybody’s in a position to succeed.”

Cox, who tried to impeach Hogan this year over for restrictions he ordered during the COVID-19 pandemic, has pitched to voters that he “will never lock you down.” He has campaigned on working to reduce regulations and taxes, supporting law enforcement and giving parents more say in public schools.

Other candidates who are running for governor include David Lashar, of the Libertarian Party; Nancy Wallace, of the Green Party; and David Harding, of the Working Class Party.

Meanwhile, Brown also is hoping to make history by becoming the state’s first Black attorney general. Brown, a three-term congressman representing a majority-Black district in the suburbs of the nation’s capital, served as lieutenant governor for eight years. He lost the 2014 governor’s race to Hogan before winning his U.S. House seat.

Brown is running against Republican Michael Peroutka, a former Anne Arundel County Council member.

A Republican has not been elected attorney general in Maryland since 1919. Edward D.E. Rollins was the last Republican to serve in the office, after being appointed to it in 1952.

In another open statewide race, Democrat Brooke Lierman is running against Republican Barry Glassman for comptroller, which is the state’s tax collector. The comptroller holds one of three positions on the state’s powerful Board of Public Works, along with the governor and state treasurer.


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