Nearly drowned out by chants of “Muse, Muse, Muse,” Maryland State Sen. C. Anthony Muse (D-26) told a standing room crowd on June 26 at the Harborside Hotel in Oxon Hill, Md. that he planned to run in the race for Prince George’s County executive.
“I have come to you tonight to announce that I am a candidate for the Democratic nomination for the office of Prince George’s County Executive. “I want you to know that after 16 years in public office I am ready to serve.”
The announcement sets up a likely showdown with Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks who has yet to make her plans public, but is also expected to join the race. Alsobrooks told a local television reporter she would be making an announcement soon. Some have also speculated that former U.S. Rep. Donna Edwards could join the race in the coming weeks, but sources close to her say it is unlikely she will run. Current Prince George’s County Executive Rushern T. Baker III recently announced that he was running for the Democratic nomination for Maryland governor.
Muse, who made his announcement following a whirlwind bus tour across the county that started in Laurel with stops in Bowie, Largo, Suitland, and Crossland High School in Temple Hills, promised at each stop to restore “hope” and “faith” in county government. “We can do better. We will do better,” he said. “I give you my word.”
The charismatic pastor and founder of the Ark of Safety Christian Church in Upper Marlboro, Md. carved out a successful record as a legislator. First elected to the state senate in 2007, he served in the House of Delegates from 1995 to 1999. He also ran for county executive in 2002 where he was defeated by Jack Johnson.
Muse promised to go after banks whose predatory lending has left more than 6,000 county residents in danger of losing their homes. He said as county executive he will stop the rubberstamping of foreclosure procedures that are often accelerated through the courts without due process.
Muse recently secured $1.5 million to build a new athletic field at Crossland High School, but he is most concerned about achievement levels and funding for county schools. “We shouldn’t be giving administrators $500,000 bonuses when there are teachers who don’t have chalk for blackboards. We also shouldn’t be graduating students that it takes two years of remedial help and four years to finish a two-year school. If voters are smart enough to pick a state senator, then those same voters should be able to determine who they want to represent them on the school board. It’s time to give the power back to people.”
Muse also promised to fight for those who have no voice such as returning citizens and homeless veterans and to work to eliminate blight and poverty in neighborhoods in and around Suitland where he pointed to abandoned buildings near the Census Bureau.
He said far too many government workers remain behind the walls of the Census Bureau “and never come out. They drive here from Virginia, but they don’t stay here. We want to give them a reason to spend their money here. It’s time for them to come from behind the wall,” Muse said. “Mr. Trump, take down this wall.”
Telling a story showing he understands the plight of ordinary people after living in 11 different foster homes and being in three different school systems, Muse said his is the original Horatio Alger story in politics. Muse holds degrees from Morgan State University, Wesley Theological Seminary and Howard University where he received a doctorate in Theology. He is married to NBC News 4 anchor Pat Lawson Muse.
“I want to be a voice for those who have no voice,” Muse said. “I want people to look at me and say if he can do it, I can too. All my life has been an uphill journey. We can turn this moment into a movement.”