State Del. Brooke Lierman declared victory in the race for comptroller Tuesday night, drawing to a close a race she was favored to win and making her the first woman to assume the seat.
Near final but incomplete results showed Lierman with 58% to 42% against Republican Harford County Executive Barry Glassman.
Appearing before a crowd of Democrats in Baltimore, Lierman said Maryland made history Tuesday.
“We have finally elected a woman to one of our three top offices,” she said. “I may be the first, but I’m going to make sure that I’m not the last.”
Glassman, who was at an election night party in Havre de Grace, congratulated Lierman shortly after midnight, wished her success and thanked his backers.
“Special thanks to all of the Marylanders who supported my bid for comptroller,” he said. “Although it was unsuccessful, I am proud of our campaign and the positive message we presented.”
Lierman, finishing her second term as a representative of South Baltimore in the Maryland House of Delegates, swept Bowie Mayor Timothy Adams in the July primary election, positioning her to take on Glassman, who ran unopposed in the Republican primary.
She was endorsed in the race by outgoing Comptroller Peter Franchot, a centrist Democrat who is retiring after four terms in the office following an unsuccessful bid for the Democratic nomination to replace Gov. Larry Hogan.
Lierman is a civil and disability rights attorney who practices procurement law, representing blind-owned businesses with federal contracts.
Glassman is a 30-year veteran of Maryland politics. He served two terms on the Harford County Council, spent nearly a decade in the Maryland House of Delegates, six years in the state Senate, and is finishing his second term as Harford County executive.
He was endorsed by Hogan, a middle-of-the-road Republican.
Harford County residents are likely to tap state Sen. Bob Cassilly to succeed Glassman.
Glassman disavowed Republican gubernatorial nominee Dan Cox and attorney general candidate Michael Peroutka for their extremist views shortly after the primary election, but his unintentional affiliation with their names at the top of the ballot could have given Lierman the advantage in a reliably Democratic state.
Both candidates ran on improving the office, including necessary updates to outdated digital infrastructure and an emphasis on providing more opportunities for small and minority-owned businesses to enter into contracts with the state government. But they have differing views on the role that Maryland’s chief financial officer should play.
The comptroller oversees state income tax collection; imposes state taxes on gasoline, alcohol and tobacco; and has a seat on the three-person Board of Public Works, which approves major state contracts. The job pays $145,500 to $149,500.
[ In virtual forum, Maryland comptroller hopefuls Brooke Lierman and Barry Glassman tout their backgrounds ]
Maryland Policy & Politics
During the campaign, Glassman leaned on his experience with revenue estimates and with independent funding as county executive to make his case.
But Lierman’s platform centered on the potential of the office, or what it can do in contrast to what it currently does. Her campaign website has touted policies for transportation and education reform, climate change and accessibility for seniors and disabled Marylanders.