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Frosh Wins Primary

June 26, 2014
BY Marc Shapiro

Cardin a distant second in attorney general race

Surrounded by his supporters, Maryland state Sen. Brian Frosh, the Democratic Party nominee for attorney general, delivers his victory speech on Tuesday night at the Woman’s Club of Chevy Chase. (Marc Shapiro)

Surrounded by his supporters, Maryland state Sen. Brian Frosh, the Democratic Party nominee for attorney general, delivers his victory speech on Tuesday night at the Woman’s Club of Chevy Chase. (Marc Shapiro)

Brian Frosh had trouble getting to the stage at his election party Tuesday night to give his victory speech. The Democratic candidate for Maryland attorney general was bombarded with hugs and handshakes as supporters cheered, applauded, took photos and cellphone videos.

“You guys won this election,” Frosh, a state senator, told those gathered at the Woman’s Club of Chevy Chase. “I will do everything I can to make sure that people in Maryland are safe in their neighborhoods, in schools, at home, online, that people have clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, they’re free from frauds and cheats and scams, and I will fight like hell for justice.”

Frosh defeated Dels. Jon Cardin (District 11) and Aisha Braveboy (District 25). He will face two challengers, a Republican and a Libertarian, in the general election.

“We ran a great race, we ran a positive race,” Cardin told supporters at his election night party in Baltimore. Moments before, he had called Frosh to congratulate him on the victory. “I hope that [Frosh] will look out for the interests of all Marylanders.”

Frosh, for his part, said he’d seek the advice of Cardin and Braveboy.

“I’d like to emphasize a number of things: public safety, environmental protection, consumer protection [and] equal opportunity,” he said. “I’m looking for ways to protect Marylanders and improve their lives.”

Frosh, an attorney with a private practice in the Washington, D.C., area, has been representing his Montgomery County district in the state Senate since 1987. He is chair of that body’s Judicial Proceedings Committee, vice chair of the Rules Committee and sits on the Executive Nominations and Legislative Policy committees.

Frosh was endorsed by many high-ranking current and former Maryland politicians, including Gov. Martin O’Malley.

Frosh’s legislative accomplishments touch on issues such as gun safety, domestic violence, environmental protection, infant safety and open meetings. He was the lead Senate sponsor of the Firearm Safety Act of 2013, which banned assault weapons and ammunition magazines of more than 10 rounds. He advocated for legislation ensuring that companies drilling near water supplies will be held responsible for contamination, that allows Maryland residents to bring suit to enforce the Open Meetings Law and that eases the burden of proof required for domestic violence victims to obtain protective orders, among others.

Frosh won the three-way race with 49 percent of the vote. Cardin trailed with 31 percent, and Braveboy took 20 percent of the vote.

“People feel his integrity,” said Mary Silva, who coordinated canvassers for Frosh’s campaign. “This is a fair, just human being.”

As she was canvassing, she found it easy to speak to people face-to-face about Frosh.

“It’s easy to talk to people … when the candidate has the qualifications, the work history,” she said. “It’s very easy to lay out why he should be attorney general.”

Rob Smith, vice president of Fitzgerald Auto Mall, said he’s supporting Frosh because he needs a pro-consumer attorney general.

“He may not always agree, but he’ll listen,” Smith said.

In November, Frosh faces Jeffrey Pritzker, a Republican Towson attorney, and Leo Dymowski, a Libertarian Maryland Parole Commission hearing officer.

Pritzker, grew up in Baltimore City and County. He was a published staff member of the Maryland Law Review as a student at the University of Maryland School of Law. He is a partner at Margolis, Pritzker, Epstein & Blatt P.A. He has almost 40 years of experience as an attorney. He previously ran for attorney general in 2002, losing in the Republican primary by two percentage points to Edwin MacVaugh, who lost in the general election to J. Joseph Curran Jr. Pritzker is a member of Beth El Congregation in Baltimore.

Pritzker says if elected he would reform the tax system, examine state regulatory agencies and expand arbitration and mediation services at the attorney general’s office.

Dymowski, a Dundalk resident, spent 15 years as a trial attorney prior to his current position. He holds a master’s degree in urban planning and management, which he earned while working for the Housing Authority of Baltimore City. He served as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division. In 2002, he ran for Congress in Maryland’s 2nd District, losing to Dutch Ruppersberger.

Dymowski says he would work to stop the arrest, prosecution and incarceration of nonviolent drug offenders, which his website says would reduce crime, save taxpayer money, pave the way for marijuana legalization and protect students from losing financial aid or being denied college admission for minor drug offenses.

The Maryland attorney general is the state’s chief legal officer; the office is not term-limited. The attorney general serves as the legal adviser to virtually every state government agency, and houses several divisions and units within the office including Antitrust, Consumer Protection and Educational Affairs divisions; Environmental Crimes, Internet Privacy and Juvenile Justice Monitoring units, among others.

Other Primary Winners
• Dutch Ruppersberger — Congressional District 2 (D)
• Jon Sarbanes — Congressional District 3 (D)
• Charles Long — Congressional District 3 (R)
• Delores Kelley — State senate District 10 (D)
• Lisa Gladden — State senate District 41 (D)
• Adrienne Jones, Jay Jalisi, Benjamin Brooks — House of Delegates District 10 (D)
•  Shelly Hettleman, Dana Stein, Dan Morhaim — House of Delegates District 11 (D)
• Jill Carter, Nathaniel Oaks, Samuel “Sandy” Rosenberg — House of Delegates District 41 (D)
• Kevin Kamenetz — Baltimore County Executive (D)
• George Harman — Baltimore County Executive (R)
• Vicki Almond — Councilmanic District 2 (D)
• A. Wade Koch — Councilmanic District 3 (R)
• Julian Earl Jones — Councilmanic District 4 (D)