Trone, Alsobrooks campaign across state with competing endorsers

Trone, Alsobrooks campaign across state with competing endorsers

Supporting Rep. David Trone for U.S. Senate Thursday at the Owen Brown Interfaith Center in Columbia were, from left, Dels. Chao Wu, Gary Simmons, Trone, Del. Natalie Ziegler, Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., and Del. Mike Rogers. Maryland Reporter photo by Len Lazarick

With the primary just days away, the Democratic race to represent Maryland in the U.S. Senate went into its final stretch this week with both of the top candidates wooing voters in appearances across the state.

In Howard County, both U.S. Rep. David Trone and Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks brought along the elected Democrats who had endorsed them.

At a small rally in Columbia Thursday, Trone touted his ability to work with Republicans, saying he has been rated the fourth most bipartisan member of the House.

Trone has spent more than $57 million on the race, mostly from his own money that he made as a co-founder of the Total Wine and More chain.

Del. Gary Simmons, a freshman delegate from northern Anne Arundel County, emphasized that “no one gave it to him. That was not left in a big account for him to inherit.”

Trone “is a person that understands what struggle means,” Simmons said.

Who can beat Hogan?

Del. Natalie Ziegler of western Howard County said, “So he’s a businessman, right? He gets things done. He’s effective. He’s efficient.” He is “the candidate who can win for us in November” and defeat former Gov. Larry Hogan, the likely Republican nominee.

Most of Maryland’s congressional delegation have endorsed Alsobrooks, so Trone brought along U.S. Rep. Gerry Connolly from Northern Virginia who stressed how hard Trone works in Congress, personally lobbying other members to support his bills. “He’s enthusiastic about whatever he’s doing,” said Connolly.

Trone himself emphasized his numerous bills on mental health issues and support for veterans on health and mental health issues, particularly veteran suicide. “It’s an honor to be able to work across the aisle and get stuff done.”

Alsobrooks and her supporters have criticized Trone for trying to buy the Senate seat with his wealth. But Trone said he takes no money from corporate political action committees, such as one representing Big Pharma, as Alsobrooks has done.

Trone’s wealth has allowed him to heavily outspend Alsobrooks on mailers, social media and TV ads. One ad in particular features elected Black officials from her own county saying is Alsobrooks is not the progressive leader she claims to be, even though most Prince George’s legislators have endorsed her.

That ad and others drew pushback Wednesday from six former chairs of the state Democratic Party. “It is simply wrong to accept that a self-funder is the answer to keeping the Maryland Senate seat blue,” they said in a statement.  It went on:

“David Trone has cast disparaging comments about women, inadvertently uttered racial slurs, and has denigrated public service. He will be challenged in building the statewide unity that is needed to win in November.”

On Monday, Alsobrooks spent the day in Ellicott City and Columbia, campaigning with Howard County Executive Calvin Ball and the majority of elected Democrats there who have endorsed her.

About The Author

Len Lazarick

Len Lazarick was the founding editor and publisher of and is currently the president of its nonprofit corporation and chairman of its board He was formerly the State House bureau chief of the daily Baltimore Examiner from its start in April 2006 to its demise in February 2009. He was a copy editor on the national desk of the Washington Post for eight years before that, and has spent decades covering Maryland politics and government.

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