An online journal of politics, policy, and society with a special focus on Maryland -- Contact: on_background at yahoo.com.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Primary Postmortem

John Kerry swept Maryland’s primary Tuesday with 59% to John Edwards’ 28% in a race that was not nearly as close as some had predicted. The Congressional primaries went much as expected: all incumbents easily won their primaries, setting up general election contests that suggest little excitement.

In the U.S. Senate primary, state Senator E.J. Pipkin won 51% of Republican votes to give him the right to face Senator Barbara Mikulski, who finished with 89%, in November. All other candidates had low single digit results. While the two most talked-about Maryland primary contests turned out to be easy walks for the incumbents. In the 6th CD, Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett beat his Republican primary opponent by more than 2 to 1, setting up a fall campaign against Kenneth Bosley. Rep. Wayne Gilchrest won the Republican primary in the 1st with 62%, while Ann Tamlyn won a rematch with 36% in the primary in what Charlie Cook calls a R + 9 district.

In the suburbs and exurbs extending from the DC border:

Brad Jewitt narrowly won the 5th CD Republican primary, giving him the unenviable task of facing Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (unchallenged in the primary) in the general. Al Wynn only took 75% against a little-known challenger in the 4th district primary, but should still not face much opposition in the fall from John McKinnis. Freshman Rep. Chris Van Hollen rolled through the primary to face Republican Chuck Floyd in a contest that should be little challenge for this heavily Democratic seat.

In Baltimore and its surroundings:

Jane Brooks took a majority in the Republican primary for the 2nd, and will face Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, who was unopposed in his primary, in this heavily Democratic district. Little challenge awaits Rep. Ben Cardin in his reelection campaign after an easy Democratic primary, though he’ll face Robert Duckworth in November. Rep. Elijah Cummings, Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, won the primary easily, and, given the more than 3:1 Democratic registration of the district, faces little competition from Republican Tony Salazar.