In a major boost to their campaigns, incumbent Sen. Jamie Raskin has endorsed David Moon and Will Smith for the two vacant delegate seats in District 20. Both Moon and Smith had managed one of Jamie’s earlier campaigns. Previously, Jamie had already endorsed incumbent Del. Sheila Hixson.
Despite not endorsing him, Raskin also defended Jonathan Shurberg against attacks on him for having been suspended temporarily from the practice of law for co-mingling client funds with his own:
Because of my allergy to negative politics, I have been unhappy about the imbalanced ad hominem attacks (not coming from District 20) on my friend and Delegate candidate Jonathan Shurberg. While he was found to have negligently misappropriated client funds, he was punished for it, no clients were harmed, and all funds were restored. In my opinion, this event should be viewed in the context of Jon’s significant public contributions to our community . . .
Raskin’s endorsement of David Moon:
Born in Takoma Park to Korean immigrants, David Moon has had an unusually effective career as a grassroots political organizer, civil liberties and civil rights policy consultant and attorney, and founder of the awesome political blog Maryland Juice, which was named one of the nation’s best by the Washington Post. A champion of insurgent reform politics, David volunteered to manage my underdog campaign for the Senate in 2006 and, through many sleepless nights and by precocious mastery of the new social media, built the organizational infrastructure for the movement that changed Montgomery County politics forever. Recognized for his dazzling political mind and devotion to social justice in our community, David went on to run numerous successful campaigns at the county and state level. He also used his formidable political skills to mobilize thousands of Marylanders to defend at the polls our legislative victories on marriage equality and the Dream Act. What impresses me most about David is his wonderful modesty, his passion for service to our community, and his love of making both democracy and new technology work for all. He will make an exceptionally able and faithful servant to Silver Spring and Takoma Park in the House of Delegates, and I support him with pride.
Raskin’s endorsement of Will Smith:
Born at Holy Cross Hospital in Silver Spring, the son of a Barwood taxi driver and a civil servant at GSA, Will Smith is the first person in his family to graduate from college, a gifted lawyer and former legislative assistant at the ACLU of Washington, a passionate Democrat, a U.S. Naval Reserve Officer and Obama administration appointee, and a young person of awesome intellect, character and commitment. In 2010, Will ran the combined campaign of the District 20 Delegation (Delegates Hixson, Hucker, Mizeur and myself), and in that capacity I got to know him as a zealous advocate for the young people of Silver Spring and Takoma Park. An active Board Member for the Gandhi Brigade, IMPACT Silver Spring, the NAACP Montgomery County Chapter, and GapBuster Learning Center, Will established the Youth Achieve Scholarship Fund, which has raised tens of thousands of dollars for college scholarships for young people in our community. As a Delegate, Will promises to fight hard to promote educational excellence for all of our kids, accelerated school construction in Montgomery County, and criminal justice reform, especially passage of the “Second Chance Act,” a measure to shield from public scrutiny marijuana possession and other nonviolent misdemeanor convictions several years after a person completes his term; with Will’s urging, I introduced the Second Chance Act in 2014 and we passed it in the Senate this Session but it languished on the House side. I know that, as a Delegate, he will not rest until he gets the job done. I also know that he will stay in close touch with our community groups and neighborhood associations because he is totally accessible and responsive; my friend Paula Kowalczuk remembers him coming to register voters for several hours on the weekend when he was in high school! I have great confidence in Will and support him with pride and excitement for the future.