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On the Campaign Trail - Dec. 4

December 04, 2011

Flocking to their candidates

Alliances are forming in Maryland’s 6th District Congress race, with four months to go before the primary and the general election 11 months away.

When state Sen. David R. Brinkley, R-Carroll/Frederick, announced Thursday that he is getting in the race, his emailed announcement had a list of Republicans whom he said are backing him.

The list included three Washington County delegation members — Sen. Christopher B. Shank, Sen. George C. Edwards and Del. LeRoy E. Myers Jr.

Brinkley has the support of seven of the 12 Republican state senators, including himself.

Myers is one of four Republican delegates on Brinkley’s list.

Alex X. Mooney, who used to represent Frederick and Washington counties in the Senate, also announced Thursday that he formed an exploratory committee for the 6th District seat, which is now held by Republican U.S. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett but is being widely pursued.

Mooney didn’t announce his supporters, but they include two other Washington County delegation members — Del. Michael J. Hough and Del. Neil C. Parrott.

Del. Andrew A. Serafini is the only Republican in the delegation who hasn’t publicly picked a candidate.

The 6th District race livened last week when word got out that Bartlett’s chief of staff, Bud Otis, was lining up support for his own possible candidacy, if Bartlett didn’t run again. Bartlett, who has said he is running for an 11th term, accepted Otis’ resignation shortly after.

Already in the GOP race

Even before the Otis/Brinkley/Mooney developments, Bartlett had four official GOP challengers.

Brandon Orman Rippeon, who started running TV ads last month for his campaign, issued a statement about the shakeup, welcoming would-be candidates to a race he has been in for months.

“It would be very beneficial to our party and to our campaigns to keep the focus on left-wing ideologues like Duchy Trachtenberg and Rob Garagiola, whose tax and spend platforms do not represent the values of our district,” Rippeon wrote, referring to two Democrats also seeking the 6th District seat.

Republican Robin Ficker reminded Washington County voters of his presence in the race last week by putting up campaign signs along Dual Highway.

Two local Dems back Garagiola

State Sen. Robert J. Garagiola, seen as a leading candidate for the Democratic nomination for the 6th District, also has been gathering support.

His campaign website lists 17 state-level elected officials who have endorsed him, including the two Democrats in Washington County’s delegation — Del. John P. Donoghue and Sen. Ronald N. Young — and Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown.

— Andrew Schotz

“On The Campaign Trail” will run periodically. Send campaign news and tips to Andrew Schotz at andrews@herald-mail.com.

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