Former State’s Attorney Glenn Ivey at the Announcement of
Del. Jolene Ivey’s bid for Lieutenant Governor
Rep. Donna Edwards is announcing her Senate bid today, which means a slew of people are thinking of running for the open Fourth.
Maryland’s Fourth Congressional District, which stretches from Anne Arundel County and around the border of the District of Columbia to take in most of inside the beltway Prince George’s County, is the wealthiest, most highly educated African American majority district in the country. We can expect a lively, crowded primary for this heavily Democratic seat.
The Hon. Rev. Bishop Senator C. Anthony Muse
Perhaps the most flamboyantly colorful member of the Maryland Legislature (Delegate Oaks of Baltimore City is more sartorially extroverted but he lacks Muse’s flair for the dramatic in other regards) brings a large base of south County voters and will have support among the large community of African-American Evangelical voters in the 4th.
How he expands his base is an open question, as his fundraising. He can’t be counted out, though his noted conservative positions, particularly on social issues, will attract a rush of progressive money to any other candidate if it looks like he stands a chance.
Former State’s Attorney Glenn Ivey or Former Del. Jolene Ivey
Glenn Ivey is a very dynamic, well connected former Prince George’s County State’s Attorney with a wealth of downtown DC connections to lean on. It’s rumored that his wife, former Delegate Jolene Ivey is making calls soliciting support for a potential bid on his behalf.
While he was an immensely popular State’s Attorney, he’s in a less strong position than if this primary were happening closer to when he last held office. On the other hand, former Del. Jolene Ivey, his wife, just ran for Lt. Governor, and only continued to build upon on her already positive image. She too would be an excellent candidate. In short, both are terrific political assets to the other.
Del. Joseline Peña-Melnyk
Joseline Peña-Melnyk looks potentially like the only Latino candidate in the race as it appears that State Senator Victor Ramirez will take a pass. However, there are fewer than 20,000 registered Latinos in district so this community only provides so large a base. Peña-Melnyk is Dominican, while most of the Latinos in the district are Salvadorian (as is Ramirez). Furthermore, much of District 21, which she represents, is in the Fifth District.
Mary Lehman is a term-limited Prince George’s County Councilwoman representing much of the Laurel area. She previously served as Chief of Staff to the last person to hold her current seat–Tom Dernoga. While well liked and respected by many in the community, she lacks to rolodex to raise the millions needed for a competitive campaign.
She would likely be perceived by many as the white candidate, although in a crowded field in a black-majority district that isn’t necessarily a bad place to be. Especially when even though the majority of residents are African American, a slight majority of registered voters are white.
Del. Erek Barron
He is a freshmen Delegate from Prince George’s County with a long resume that includes stints working for Joe Biden and as a high level prosecutor. Barron has deep ties into the legal community in Baltimore and the District of Colombia, as well as on Capitol Hill. He could likely raise more money than all other candidates except either of the Iveys. He has already impressed many in his brief time in the legislature and shouldn’t be underestimated.
Former Lt. Governor Anthony Brown
Mere months ago the idea that today Anthony Brown would be a heavy underdog candidate in a potential comeback for an open congressional seat would be so fundamentally bizarre and incongruous that it belied even a hint of plausibility. But, lo, how the mighty hath fallen
While Brown is currently largely persona non grata throughout Maryland, he is a very talented, fairly charismatic pol with a sterling resume who did carry his home county very strongly. Far stranger things have happened (See: Sanford, Mark). Don’t count him out.