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Del. Maggie McIntosh, chair of the House Appropriations Committee, stands near her seat on the House of Delegates floor.
Del. Maggie McIntosh, chair of the House Appropriations Committee, stands near her seat on the House of Delegates floor. (Barbara Haddock Taylor / Baltimore Sun)

WASHINGTON -- A powerful state lawmaker with close ties to Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski will endorse Rep. Chris Van Hollen's campaign for Senate on Thursday -- the first major endorsement to come from Baltimore in the state's high-profile political contest.

Del. Maggie McIntosh, a Baltimore City Democrat and the chair of the Appropriations Committee, will announce she is backing Van Hollen at an event in Keswick.

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Van Hollen, of Montgomery County, is running against Rep. Donna F. Edwards, of Prince George's County, for the Democratic nomination to replace Mikulski. The state's senior senator is retiring in 2017.

McIntosh's support is significant for several reasons, not the least of which is she has long been viewed as close to Mikulski. Prior to winning her election to the House of Delegates in 1992, McIntosh served as Mikulski's campaign manager and state director.

Mikulski has not taken a position in the race to succeed her.

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