After months of positioning himself as an outsider, Maryland's Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler on Tuesday announced 43 current and former Montgomery County elected officials back his gubernatorial campaign.
Gansler has cast himself as the anti-establishment candidate in the Democratic primary contest and criticized his chief rival Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown for high-profile roll-outs of endorsements from elected officials.
While Gansler has picked up support from elected officials across the state, Tuesday's announcement marks the first time the two-term attorney general trumpeted endorsements. Nineteen of Gansler's 43 announced endorsements come from people who no longer hold public office.
Five current state senators, 13 current delegates, Montgomery County state's attorney, the county's sheriff and a former congressman are included on the list, which was released before Gansler's major Montgomery County fundraiser Tuesday night. The annual event has traditionally supplied a large portion of Gansler's campaign account in previous elections.
In releasing the endorsements, Gansler downplayed their signficance, saying in a statement that, "As governor, I will continue working with the leaders of the county to best serve the people, because, in the end, it is the people's endorsement and only their endorsement that truly matters."
Gansler campaign spokesman Bob Wheelock said the campaign planned to announce endorsements from other areas of the state in January.
Brown, who launched his campaign months before Gansler, has secured endorsements from Gov. Martin O'Malley, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and more than half of the Democrats currently in elected office in Maryland, according to his campaign.
Montgomery County Del. Heather Mizeur is also running in the Democratic primary. She has secured endorsements from several other Montgomery County officials including those in her home base of Takoma Park.