Author and former nonprofit leader Wes Moore claimed the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, calling his matchup against Republican state Del. Dan Cox “a choice between unity and division.”
Moore, 43, surrounded by Democratic elected officials and allies, addressed the media in Baltimore on Saturday. The Associated Press declared him the winner on Friday night as mail-in votes were being counted.
Former U.S. Labor Secretary Tom Perez, Moore’s closest rival, conceded on Saturday, saying, “Now is the time for us to unite.”
Perez, also the former Democratic National Committee chair, called Cox “an extreme right-wing, QAnon conspiracy theory peddling insurrectionist.”
Cox, who was endorsed by former president Donald Trump, referred to Moore in a fundraising email as a “socialist” who asked guests at a recent event to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19. One of Cox’s campaign themes in the primary was decrying pandemic mediation measures, including vaccine and mask mandates.
Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby conceded in her reelection bid and said she called defense attorney Ivan Bates on Saturday to congratulate him.
“I am grateful to my family and my colleagues in the state’s attorney’s office for their commitment to our city and all their hard work on behalf of the citizens of Baltimore,” Mosby said. “We have so much to be proud of, and I am forever indebted to so many for their love, support and partnership over these past eight years.”
Bates’ victory is a reversal of the 2018 primary, which featured the same candidates but saw Mosby trounce Bates and former prosecutor Thiru Vignarajah for her second term.
Bates said repeatedly on the campaign trail he was running in part to make the city safer for his 6-year-old daughter.
Incumbent Scott Shellenberger maintained a narrow lead over Robbie Leonard in the Democratic primary race for Baltimore County state’s attorney as mail-in ballots continued to be tallied.
The canvass of mail-in ballots began statewide Thursday.
Shellenberger is seeking a fifth term, and this was his first primary challenge since being elected in 2006. Leonard, a former public defender now in private practice, ran on a progressive platform, while Shellenberger’s campaign signs say “Tough on Crime.”
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The Democratic race between challenger Sam Cogen and incumbent John Anderson remained too close for Baltimore sheriff.
Anderson, 75, has faced a spirited challenge from Cogen, 48, who served as a deputy in Anderson’s office until leaving in November 2021. Anderson has served in the post since 1989.
Cogen has pledged to modernize the office, which he said has been technologically inadequate during Anderson’s tenure. Cogen has also promised reforms to “humanize” the city’s eviction process, which falls under the sheriff’s authority.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan acknowledged Sunday that “we lost a battle” when Dan Cox won the Republican gubernatorial primary but that he would continue to oppose “a hostile takeover” of the Republican Party by former president Donald Trump and his loyalists.
”I can tell you I’m not giving up; it just makes me want to double down and fight back against what I think is kind of a hostile takeover of the party that I love,” the two-term governor told Jake Tapper on CNN’s State of the Union.
Cox, a Trump-endorsed state delegate from Frederick County, defeated Hogan-backed Kelly Schulz and will now face Democratic nominee Wes Moore in the November election. Hogan has frequently clashed with Trump.
Hogan also appeared Sunday on “This Week,” saying on the ABC News show that Cox’s victory “makes me more determined than ever to continue the battle to win the — you know, win over the Republican Party and take us back to a bigger tent, more Reagan-esque party.”