Democratic Gubernatorial Candidates Receive Flurry of Endorsements

November 16, 2021

By: Bruce DePuyt

Maryland Matters

Tuesday was Endorsement Day, it seems, in the Democratic race for governor, as three top candidates corralled noteworthy backing.

Comptroller Peter V.R. Franchot won the endorsement of former Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan (D). Duncan served three terms at the helm of Maryland’s largest county, from 1994 to 2006. He ran for governor in 2006 but withdrew from the race before the primary. He is currently head of Leadership Greater Washington.

Del. Heather Bagnall (D-Anne Arundel County) also announced she is backing Franchot’s bid to succeed Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R), who is term-limited.

The Franchot campaign also announced the support of nearly two dozen municipal and school board officials, many of them members of the Prince George’s Board of Education who have clashed with board chair Juanita D. Miller, an appointee of County Executive Angela D. Alsobrooks (D):

  • Ed Burroughs, Prince George’s County Board of Education
  • David Murray, Prince George’s County Board of Education
  • Belinda Queen, Prince George’s County Board of Education
  • Shayla Adams-Stafford, Prince George’s County Board of Education
  • Kenny Harris, Prince George’s County Board of Education
  • Joshua Thomas, Prince George’s County Board of Education
  • Mayor Cashenna Cross, Glenarden
  • Mayor Lillie Thompson Martin, Fairmont Heights
  • Mayor Phelecia Nembhard, New Carrollton
  • Vice Mayor Shireka McCarthy, Seat Pleasant
  • Councilmember Kathleen Guillaume, Glenarden
  • Councilmember Erika Fareed, Glenarden
  • Councilmember Kelly Porter, Seat Pleasant
  • Councilmember Gerald Raynor, Sr., Seat Pleasant
  • Councilmember Paula Noble, Forest Heights
  • Councilmember Robert Barnes Jr., Forest Heights
  • Councilmember Colin Byrd, Greenbelt
  • Councilmember Todd Mullins, Morningside
  • Councilmember-elect Carrol McBryde, Bladensburg
  • Councilmember Shaneka Nichols, Berlin

The Franchot campaign hailed the endorsements — which ranged from the business-friendly Duncan to progressive leaders in Prince George’s — as evidence of a “big tent coalition.”

“Our growing coalition is united by its desire to speak up and speak out on behalf of Marylanders who deserve a better quality of life, and that starts with reorienting our politics around delivering concrete results every day,” Franchot said in a statement.

Kagan endorses Moore

Sen. Cheryl Kagan (D-Montgomery) endorsed Wes Moore’s bid for governor, calling the former anti-poverty organization CEO a “transformational” leader.

Kagan serves as vice-chair of the Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee and has been an outspoken critic of Franchot.

“When I think about what Maryland needs in our next Governor, I look for someone who is progressive, effective, ethical, and electable,” Kagan said in a statement. “Wes Moore is all of that and more.”

Kagan’s endorsement gives Moore another well-known surrogate in Maryland’s largest county, one that is home to a treasure trove of Democratic primary voters. He called her “a true leader in our legislature” and “a champion on behalf of our nonprofits, the environment, public safety, and more.”

Moore has yet to choose a running mate, and Tuesday’s endorsement will — at a minimum — fuel speculation that Moore might tap the two-term senator to join his ticket.

ATU supports Perez

Former U.S. Labor Secretary Tom Perez snagged another union endorsement on Tuesday, when the Amalgamated Transit Union International and Locals 689 (Washington, DC) and 1300 (Baltimore) came out supporting his candidacy.

ATU is the largest union representing transit workers and has a history of turning out in big numbers on behalf of the candidates they support.

“Working people in Maryland need a true champion as Governor,” said ATU International President John Costa. “Tom Perez is the leader Maryland needs with the experience necessary to build better public transit, support working families and create a better Maryland.”

Perez, a former DNC chairman and state labor secretary, said: “With Maryland set to receive billions of dollars from the recent infrastructure bill passed by Congress, we need a leader that has experience not only dispersing funds effectively, but ensuring that workers always have a seat at the table.”