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Politics

Some concede, others watch and wait in Maryland Democratic primary race for governor

With votes in the Democratic primary race for governor still being tallied, candidates outside the top group of vote-getters are starting to concede. Ashwani Jain, a former Obama White House official, made the call Wednesday morning.

“This campaign has meant everything to me and to our 750+ volunteers,” he wrote on Twitter. “And while we await final results, it appears we will not be the Democratic nominee for Governor. We’ll have more to say soon.”

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Similarly, John. B. King, Obama’s education secretary, conceded last night.

“This race for Governor has always been deeply personal to me because I know there are too many Maryland families that have been denied real opportunity,” he tweeted. “While we do not yet know who will be our Democratic nominee, sadly we know at this point it will not be us.”

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Jon Baron, a nonprofit executive, also tweeting last night: “Maryland, thank you. Running for governor has been the experience of a lifetime. While we hoped for a better result, I’ll forever be inspired by all those I met who are committed to improving our great state. I’ll never stop fighting to bring proven solutions to Maryland.”

Rushern Baker III, former Prince George’s County Executive, had already dropped out of the race.

The race remains close with Wes Moore, author and entrepreneur, leading Tom Perez, former Obama labor secretary, and Peter Franchot, state comptroller. Counting mail-in ballots begins Thursday morning.

A spokesperson for Moore didn’t immediately respond to a message.

Perez issued a statement Wednesday night thanking his supporters and saying the race is down to two candidates.

“We believe that just over half of the votes cast in this election have been counted. The remaining ballots — hundreds of thousands of them — will begin to be counted tomorrow,” he said.

Franchot’s spokesperson, Jordan Bellamy, said they are using the time Wednesday to get a little rest.

“We’re still in it and staying optimistic,” she said. “We’re using this time to rest, recover and make sure we’re in a good spot for the days ahead.”

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Doug Gansler, former attorney general, said in a statement: “The results were not what we had hoped for, but I look forward to congratulating and supporting our Democratic nominee once the race is called.”

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Jerome M. Segal, an author and founder of the socialist Bread and Roses Party, acknowledged that he won’t win the governor’s race and decried efforts by the media to preordain the front-runners.

But he’s already determined his background squares better with a national campaign and said his next race will be for president in 2024. The focus is on his research areas of peace in the Mideast and the rights of workers.

“I’ve got the energy and determination,” he said.

Jaffe, a teacher running against who he says are corrupt politicians, said he purposefully ran a self-funded shoestring campaign — and got votes.

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“I think that’s pretty good,” he said. “I’ve been on the phone today thanking all the people who voted for me. If my Maker keeps me around, the next phase of the movement is to run for mayor of Baltimore in 2024. I may not have won this battle but the war is still on.”

His next campaign will continue his push to set a standard of behavior for politicians.


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