The three announced Democratic candidates for governor, along with the four in the race for attorney general, are expected to appear Monday at a forum put on by the Baltimore Build Trades Council -- part of the run-up to the state AFL-CIO's decision on who to endorse.
The candidates will be seeking the backing of the wing of the AFL-CIO representing the construction trades -- including such unions as the iron workers, boilermakers, electricians, roofers and operating engineers. The attorney general candidates are expected to appear as a panel at the session at the Turf Valley Resort in Howard County. The gubernatorial hopefuls will speak individually.
Seeking the Democratic nomination for governor in the June 24 primary are Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown, Attorney General Douglas M. Gansler and Del. Heather Mizeur of Montgomery County. The attorney general candidates are Sen. Brian Frosh and Del. C. William Frick of Montgomery, Del. Jon S. Cardin of Baltimore County and Del. Aisha Braveboy of Prince George's County.
Rod Easter, president of the council, said the building trades will make their decision who to support between the forum and the AFL-CIO's state convention in late October.
"It's a process that we go through," he said. "We've got to inform our delegates of the issues."
While it may not be as dominant as it once was in party affairs, the AFL-CIO can still bring significant organizational and monetary support to its favored Democrats.
Easter said the choice will not be easy. Most of the candidates have solid records of support for labor's issues.
"It's a difficult decision because you've got a lot of good people," Easter said.