Category Archives: District 39

Campaign Finance Reports: Districts 20 and 39, January 2018

By Adam Pagnucco.

District 20

Everybody in this district is broke, including the incumbents.  Gone are the days when Jamie Raskin, Sheila Hixson, Heather Mizeur and Tom Hucker were raising money hand over fist and Jonathan Shurberg was writing himself six-digit checks!

If money is not a differentiator, the landscape will favor the three incumbents: Senator Will Smith and Delegates David Moon and Jheanelle Wilkins.  We anticipate that the three will team up, combine resources, get most if not all of the institutional endorsements and be reelected.  That leaves a contest for the open seat being vacated by the Queen of District 20, long-time Delegate Sheila Hixson.  Lorig Charkoudian, who runs a community mediation non-profit, has deep roots in Takoma Park and has been an advocate on progressive legislation at the state level (including abolishing the death penalty).  She finished second for last year’s Delegate appointment to Wilkins.  Howard University professor and volunteer fire fighter Darian Unger ran for the House in 2014 and finished fifth.  In that race, Unger was endorsed by the Washington Post, the Gazette, the Volunteer Fire Fighters, the Sierra Club and the League of Conservation Voters.

The Big Question: will there be a mixed slate featuring the incumbents and either Charkoudian or Unger?  Such an event would be a repeat of 2014, when incumbents Raskin and Hixson teamed up with newcomers Moon and Smith to sweep the primary.

District 39

We should run a poll of Seventh State readers on whether this district is messier than District 17.  Last time, the four incumbents – Senator Nancy King and Delegates Charles Barkley, Kirill Reznik and Shane Robinson – had no primary opponents and cruised to reelection.  This year, Barkley’s decision to run for County Council At-Large has opened a seat.  MCGEO President Gino Renne threatened to defeat Reznik last May a month after Renne’s employee, Gabe Acevero, began his campaign for the House.  Shortly thereafter, the incumbents chose to slate with newcomer Lesley Lopez and it was Game On.  Just last week, County Executive Ike Leggett piled on, endorsing Acevero and accusing the incumbents of slating with Lopez in a “smoke-filled room.”  That’s an ironic comment from Leggett considering that he was first elected in 1986 as a new candidate invited by incumbents onto a mixed slate.

Putting aside the admittedly fun political food fight, the data above shows one salient fact: no one has any money except the incumbents.  That’s a big deal for Lopez as she can benefit from pooled resources with the rest of her slate.  Acevero’s path to victory necessitates rolling up lots of labor support – and not just from MCGEO and its affiliates – and raising enough money to break through.  That’s not easy to do in this district, which lacks the legions of liberal activists of District 20 and the wealthy neighborhoods of Districts 15, 16 and 18.

The Big Question: will the tumult over the incumbents’ mixed slate filter down to the voters or is it just something that the chattering class (and obsessive bloggers) will yap about?  If it’s the latter, the slate strategy could pay off.

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Hamza Khan’s Statement on the D39 Race

Following is Hamza Khan’s statement on his candidacy in District 39, which he released today.

*****

Over the past few days, I have been contacted by numerous party leaders, elected officials and voters asking me remain in the race for Delegate in District 39 or to alternatively consider running for county council at-large. I wish to express my deep gratitude in the faith that so many supporters have put in my candidacy for public office. In light of these appeals, I have decided that the wisest course of action at this time is to take some time to reflect. I plan to meet with voters and stakeholders in our community in order to discuss the merits of my campaign and seek their counsel, because it is their voices that matter for any decision to be made in our democracy. Therefore, I will make an final decision about running for office later this summer.

No matter what my decision will be, I believe that all the Democrats seeking our party’s nomination for delegate in District 39 and for County Council next June are accomplished individuals who represent some of the best our beautiful county and state have to offer. Thanks to many of them, I am excited for the future of our party, county and state. Together, I know we can and will liberate Government House from Larry Hogan, and fight the alt-right agenda of his fellow Republicans in Washington. I look forward to being in touch.
Democratically Yours,
Hamza Khan
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Hamza Khan Running for Delegate

Hamza is perhaps best known locally as a founder of the Muslim Democratic Club but he has also be active in many different ways. Here is the press release:

Hamza Khan Announces Campaign for Maryland State Delegate in District 39

GERMANTOWN, MD: Long-time community activist Hamza Khan will run for state delegate in Maryland’s District 39. Hamza will be seeking the vacancy created by long-time public servant Delegate Charlie Barkley, who has decided to run for the Montgomery County Council. “I have decided to run for public office because the challenges we are facing today as a state and country require us to build bridges and seek to bring together our entire community to achieve a progressive future for our children and generations to come”, said Hamza.

Hamza has already been endorsed by a number of progressive elected officials across Montgomery County and the great state of Maryland. Key endorsements include Senator Will Smith (D-20), Delegates Bilal Ali (D-41), Pam Queen (D-14), Joseline Peña-Melnyk (D-20) and Angela Angel (D-25).

In a nod to the breathtaking diversity of District 39, Hamza’s honorary campaign co-chairs collectively speak over a dozen languages in addition to English, including: Arabic, Armenian, Bahasa Indonesia, Cantonese, French, Hebrew, Hindi/Urdu, Mandarin, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, Vietnamese and Wolof. All are spoken in District 39, which is one of the state’s most diverse legislative districts to live by population. “Hamza is a warm person with a warm heart. He has an obvious devotion to strengthening and maintaining good relations between all faiths and ethnicities in our diverse community,” said Montgomery Village community interfaith activist Keleigh Arian (D39).

Hamza’s platform includes: funding and protecting Maryland’s commitment to K-12 public education; fighting for what’s best for our public school teachers, support staff, and students; working to close the achievement gap; fighting for free tuition at all Maryland community colleges; special needs and disability advocacy; investing in public transit options for Maryland commuters, such as Bus Rapid Transit and expanding access to MARC trains; protecting our environment and continuing to restore the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries; protecting a woman’s right to choose; fighting for an end to gender-pay discrimination; fighting for an increased minimum wage; fighting for the rights and protections of Maryland workers; advocating for, listening to, and including organized labor in the battle for social justice in our state; working to improve access to affordable childcare for Maryland families; and investing in Maryland’s small and family-owned businesses.

“Hamza is committed to fighting for progressive values and empowering underrepresented communities. He would be a great leader in the Maryland General Assembly,” said Amy Frieder, an UpCounty Democratic Party activist.

Hamza’s campaign website will launch by early summer. In the meantime, you can follow him on Twitter @HamzaSKhan or like his Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/hamzapolitics) to get updates about his campaign!

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Delegation Chairs from District 39

District 39

District 39 Sen. Nancy King will be the chair of the Montgomery County Senate delegation. Now, it appears as if the chair of the House delegation will also hail from D39, as it is said that Del. Shane Robinson has received assurances of support from a majority of Montgomery County delegates. Good news for residents of this part of the County–no worries that their concerns will fail to gain concern for the delegation.

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