By Hamil R. Harris, Special to the AFRO
It was just supposed to be a pre-Labor Day pep rally to open “ coordinated Democratic campaign,” office in Largo.
But Rep. Anthony Brown acknowledged that he didn’t run the best campaign against Governor Larry Hogan four years ago and 2018 candidate Ben Jealous said as the son of a White man and the father of African American boy he has insight and worries about both and shouldn’t be underestimated.
The frank talk of Brown and Jealous was part of a campaign rally in Largo where Prince George’s County State’s Attorney candidate Aisha Braveboy and Maryland Attorney General candidate Brian Frosh pleaded with Democrats that party affiliation must outweigh personality in an Governor’s race where some in their ranks are working to re-elect Maryland’s Republican Governor.
“We know that Prince George’s County is the Mother load of Democratic votes, we saw what happened in 2014, if they come out they will vote Democrat we just have to get them out,” said Brown who was referring to low voter turnout during his campaign in which he lost to Hogan by about 70,000 votes.
Braveboy, who is running unopposed, told the packed room, “I have a secret for you. We are going to win, we are going to take back the Governor’s mansion … we know that there is a lot at stake for state, for our country and for our county.”
During his remarks Jealous said “You know folks have counted me out before, the Gonzalez poll has been off before (in terms) of my support in early voting, we have lived this move before and we know how to win. We speak to issues at the center of people’s lives, we help them see that we can do so much better in terms of education and we have a plan.”
Senator Ben Cardin also attended the event and during an interview he said, “we are united for Democrats here in Maryland and Ben Jealous is going to be our next Governor and I am strongly working to do everything that I can to get him elected Governor.”
While Cardin was in attendance; some of the state’s most well-known Democrats, including former Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and former Prince George’s County State’s Attorney and former Judge Alex Williams are supporting Hogan..
But Prince George’s County Board of Education member Edward Burroughs said that young people will be the difference in this election because of issues like universal healthcare and criminal justice reform and because “we have been looking for honest and ethical leadership.” The coordinated campaign office is filled with young Bernie Sanders for President political workers. Jealous was a leader in the campaign.
Another person working for Jealous is Florida Democrat for Governor Andrew Gillum. After the rally, in an interview with the AFRO, among a handful of other reporters, Jealous talked about Gillum and his own background in terms of running for office.
“Our Governor truly has no plan to make life better and it’s urgent that we do,” Jealous said. “You know I’m the son of an old White guy who is raising a young Black guy. For my son, I worry about the homicide rate, for my dad I worry about the suicide rate. When you look at handgun deaths The only number that trumps the homicide deaths of Black men ages 15 to 30 is the suicide rate of White men over 60 and the root cause in both cases is the way in which hope being lost in our communities… and we have a real opportunity to bring hope back to Maryland and that’s what this campaign is about.”