Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown picked up the support of 23 county elected officials from around Maryland Friday, adding to the summertime parade of endorsements of his candidacy for governor next year.
With the announcement at the Maryland Association of Counties summer convention in Ocean City, the Brown campaign now boasts the backing of more than half the Democratic county executives, county commissioners, county council members and Baltimore City Council members in the state.
The Brown campaign rolled out the endorsements at a news conference at the Ocean City Convention Center, where he was joined by his running mate, Howard County Executive Ken Ulman, and early endorser Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.
Brown has taken a different approach to endorsements than his main rivals for the Democratic nomination for governor in the June 2014 primary, Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler and Montgomery County Del. Heather Mizeur.
In comments after Friday's event, Brown said the support of fellow elected officials gives voters an important sign.
The lieutenant governor jumped out early with a formal announcement of his candidacy in May and since then has announced a series of high-level endorsements.
In addition to Gov. Martin O'Malley, Brown previously picked up the support of U.S. Reps. Elijah E. Cummings, Steny Hoyer and Donna Edwards and state Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, among others.
Mizeur, who announced in July, and Gansler, who is expected to make his candidacy official in September, have played down the importance of endorsements and are vying for the title of outsider in the race.
"Endorsements matter because it is a reflection that within the community of public servants there are strong relationships and shared values," he said. Brown said his campaign will lay out its stance on issues starting in the fall.
Among those Brown added to his camp Friday was Wicomico County Executive Richard Pollitt and Montgomery Councilwomen Valerie Ervin and Nancy Navarro. They were joined by four members of the Baltimore County Council: Vicki Almond, Kathy Bevins, John Olszewski Sr. and Ken Oliver. Councilman Tom Quirk, the other Democrat on the council, had previously endorsed Brown.
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