Washington to chal­lenge Con­way for Se­nate seat

Baltimore Sun - - NEWS - By Michael Dresser mdresser@balt­sun.com twit­ter.com/michaelt­dresser

un­seat an in­cum­bent se­na­tor in the pri­mary. A third is ex­pected to do so this week. In Bal­ti­more, win­ning the Demo­cratic nom­i­na­tion has for decades been tan­ta­mount to elec­tion.

Del. An­to­nio Hayes has an­nounced that he will take on Sen. Bar­bara Robin­son, who was ap­pointed in late 2016 to take the 40th District seat va­cated by now-Mayor Cather­ine Pugh. Del. Cory McCray is ex­pected on Satur­day to jump into a race against vet­eran Sen. Nathaniel McFad­den in East Bal­ti­more’s 45th District.

Sen. Shirley Nathan-Pul­liam, who rep­re­sents a district that is split be­tween Bal­ti­more City and County, faces a chal­lenge from la­bor union ac­tivist Aletheia McCaskill in the 44th. McCaskill filed in July but will for­mally an­nounce her can­di­dacy Satur­day.

In North­west Bal­ti­more’s 41st District, Sen. Nathaniel Oaks is ex­pected to be chal­lenged. The for­mer del­e­gate, who was ap­pointed to the seat af­ter Sen. Lisa Glad­den re­tired for health rea­sons, is un­der fed­eral in­dict­ment on cor­rup­tion charges.

The city Se­nate del­e­ga­tion elected in 2018 could be much younger than the cur­rent lineup. In each case where there is a con­test, the chal­lenger is sig­nif­i­cantly younger than the in­cum­bent.

Sen. Bill Ferguson, 34, of the 46th District and Con­way are the only city se­na­tors un­der the age of 70.

Con­way said Washington pre­vi­ously told her she would run only if Con­way did not. She ques­tioned whether vot­ers would want to re­place a se­na­tor hold­ing a lead­er­ship po­si­tion with one who would start in the back benches.

Con­way said she will run on a ticket with Dels. Mag­gie McIn­tosh and Curt An­der­son and is con­fi­dent of vic­tory.

Washington de­clined to out­line pol­icy dif­fer­ences with Con­way but hinted that she would draw sharp dis­tinc­tions as her cam­paign un­folds.

“I’m much more fo­cused on the is­sues of the 43rd District, the con­stituents,” she said. “Some peo­ple trust in the im­por­tance of back­room deals, but I pre­fer to ad­vo­cate for my con­stituents in a more open and trans­par­ent way.”

Among the ac­com­plish­ments Washington plans to tout is her spon­sor­ship of a bill that would have blocked the sale of peo­ple’s homes in or­der to col­lect over­due wa­ter bills. The mea­sure passed the House this year but died in the Se­nate.


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