Is John Delaney Running for President?

By Adam Pagnucco.


A Delaney spokesman told the Daily Record’s Bryan Sears, “Congressman Delaney does not have an office in Iowa or any other place other than Maryland and Washington, D.C… As he has said before, the Congressman and his wife plan to make an announcement regarding a possible run for Maryland’s governor by the end of June.”  Note that while this statement denies opening an Iowa office, it does not specifically deny an interest in the Presidency.

Also, Delaney’s campaign sent out a blast email excoriating the Republicans’ plan for health care today.  The email was titled, “TrumpCare – It’s Back!”  It began by saying, “They’re at it again. Any minute now, Donald Trump and House Republicans could force a vote to eliminate healthcare for 24 million Americans. This time they made the bill even worse. They’re trying to rally enough votes to weaken protections for pre-existing conditions, those that prevent discrimination against women, seniors, and middle-class families. We need to tell them enough is enough.”

Original Post:

Western Maryland blogger Ryan Miner had an interesting post on Congressional District 6 Congressman John Delaney yesterday.  Miner quoted former Attorney General Doug Gansler predicting that Delaney will be announcing for President.  He also posted a short Twitter video in which MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews (the husband of the current Maryland Democratic Party chair) alleged that Delaney is opening an office in Iowa.

Is this just a crazy rumor or is there something to this?

Consider the following.

  1. Delaney has been involved in Iowa politics before.

In 2013, Delaney visited Iowa to campaign for Jim Mowrer, an Iraq War veteran and Democratic candidate for Congress against arch-conservative incumbent Steve King.  Delaney also made two separate contributions to Mowrer of $2,600 each on 9/5/13 and 9/8/13.  Mowrer lost the 2014 general election to King by 12 points.  Mowrer challenged a different Republican incumbent two years later and lost again.

  1. Delaney has played in other places too.

Delaney does not have a leadership PAC to send money to other politicians like many Members of Congress do, but he has made several individual contributions to other candidates since being elected.  Recipients include former Florida Congressman and U.S. Senate candidate Patrick Murphy ($2,700 in 2016), Virginia Senator Mark Warner ($2,600 in 2013), California Congressman Raul Ruiz ($1,000 in 2013) and former Illinois Congressman William Enyart ($1,000 in 2013).  In addition, Delaney’s wife has contributed to New Jersey Senator Cory Booker ($2,600 in 2013) and Michigan Congresswoman Debbie Dingell ($1,000 in 2014).

  1. Delaney is continuing to raise federal money.

Delaney’s fundraising schedule includes at least three near-term events.  A May 2nd event in D.C. was hosted by lawyers Bert Pena and Joseph A. Muldoon III.  A May 18th event will be held at the Delaneys’ Capitol Hill townhouse.  And a June 9-11 event is scheduled at the Delaneys’ home in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.  Look carefully at the language of the solicitation for this last event.  It is an “inaugural beach weekend,” implying that there will be similar events in the future.

What does all this add up to?  Maybe not much, but none of this is consistent with a run for Governor.  It is especially interesting that Delaney is continuing to raise money for his federal account but, as of this writing, has no state-level account for a gubernatorial run.  And if Delaney runs for President, what does that mean for his Congressional seat?  Would he give it up to run full-time?  Or would it be smarter to hold onto it as a platform going into the 2020 election?  One thing is for sure – a risky run for Governor would make no sense in a Presidential scenario.  A candidate who loses in his own state has little potential as a national prospect.

No doubt, more will be coming out soon!