'Our city is moving in the wrong direction’: Del. Nick Mosby announces run for Baltimore City Council president

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State Del. Nick Mosby announces a run for Baltimore City Council president.

With a new web video touting his experience at City Hall and the State House, Del. Nick J. Mosby entered the race for City Council president Tuesday, arguing he’s best qualified to serve as Baltimore’s No. 2 elected official.

“Right now, our city is moving in the wrong direction,” Mosby said in an interview with The Baltimore Sun. “Two of the last three mayors have been indicted. There are tremendous systemic issues that have constantly plagued the growth of our city.”


Mosby, 40, a former city councilman, electrical engineer and Baltimore Polytechnic Institute graduate, is now the third elected official in the race. Baltimore City Councilwoman Shannon Sneed and Councilman Leon Pinkett already have announced their campaigns. All are Democrats.

“I saw there was a void and a huge need,” Mosby said for why he decided to run. “We need someone with my skill set and my background to get in there and hit the ground running at a time when the city of Baltimore desperately needs it.”


With incumbent Council President Brandon Scott running for mayor, the 2020 Democratic primary will be the first time sitting elected officials have faced off against each other for council president since Stephanie Rawlings-Blake won the seat in 2007.

In Mosby’s video, entitled “Dedicated,” he touts his efforts in the legislature to prevent lead paint poisoning and fight the Preakness from moving out of Baltimore. He also references his marriage to Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn J. Mosby.

“You probably know that I’m married to a woman who shares my passion for equal opportunity and fairness,” he says on the video. “But you may not know my professional background as an electrical engineer and that I served on the City Council passing groundbreaking new laws.”

Mosby, who unsuccessfully ran for mayor in 2016 before winning a seat in 2017 in the House of Delegates, was the lead sponsor of state legislation that bars the city of Baltimore from seizing homes for overdue water bills and a bill that would have banned Maryland employers from asking about a job applicant’s criminal record until after an interview. Republican Gov. Larry Hogan vetoed the latter bill.

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His mayoral campaign was hampered, in part, by concerns some voters had about one family having too much concentrated power in Baltimore. In a 2016 Baltimore Sun poll, a third of voters said they were less likely to vote for Mosby for mayor because he is married to the city’s state’s attorney.

A Reservoir Hill resident who represents West Baltimore’s 40th district in the legislature, Mosby served two terms on the Baltimore City Council from 2011 to 2016.

There, his signature legislation called “Ban the Box,” barred many city employers from asking about a job candidate’s criminal history until a conditional offer has been extended. The law, Mosby said, “created opportunities for many returning citizens to have a second chance at getting their lives on track.”

Sneed said she welcomes Mosby to the race. She pointed to her record of introducing progressive legislation, such as bills that protect city contractual employees from sudden layoffs; require all top officials in Baltimore’s government to live within the city; and end the city’s use of nondisparagement clauses in settling lawsuits with people who sue the police department alleging abuse or misconduct.


“I put in legislation from Day One that has made a difference in Baltimore City,” Sneed said. “Our record will speak for itself. No one is going to outwork me.”

The filing deadline is Jan. 24 for the 2020 Democratic primary on April 28. In Baltimore, Democrats outnumber Republicans 10-to-1.

Baltimore Sun reporter Talia Richman contributed to this article.