U.S. House Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.) threw his weight behind Garagiola, as did every major union and such liberal groups as MoveOn.org and the League of Conservation Voters. Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) also endorsed Garagiola in the closing days of the race.
But Delaney, the founder of the Chevy Chase commercial lender CapitalSource, was able to leverage some of his own political connections, winning the backing of Clinton as well as Comptroller Peter Franchot and Rep. Donna F. Edwards of Prince George’s County.
Delaney raised roughly double what Garagiola did in the first quarter of the year from outside donors, and Delaney also put about $1.7 million of his own money into his campaign. He ran a host of television and radio ads, while Garagiola was silent on the airwaves.
The tenor of the race was often negative. Delaney branded Garagiola an Annapolis “insider” and criticized him for not reporting outside income from a lobbying job on state disclosure forms. Garagiola accused Delaney’s business of unsavory practices and pointed out his contribution to the congressional campaign of Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) in 2010.
Bartlett, meanwhile, was leading a field that included Brinkley and Del. Kathy Afzali (Frederick). Although the redrawn district includes territory he has never represented, and some state Republicans had privately expected him to retire, Bartlett appeared to benefit from the fact that the anti-incumbent primary vote was split several ways.
At Potomac United Methodist Church, Republican Roger Thies said he supported Bartlett because he felt he was the GOP’s best bet at retaining control of the competitive seat.
“Clearly the Democrats have tried to gerrymander [the district], and I think Bartlett has the best chance to hold it, on name recognition alone,” Thies said. He said it was the “sole reason” he cast his ballot for Bartlett.
In the Senate contest, Cardin easily deflected a primary challenge from state Sen. C. Anthony Muse (Prince George’s) and seven other Democrats. With roughly a quarter of the precincts reporting, Cardin led Muse by more than 50 percentage points and had been declared the winner by The Associated Press.
“We are extremely pleased by our results in all parts of the state,” Cardin said in a brief interview. “We’re ready for the general.”
Muse, who is black, made the case that Prince George’s needed a better voice in Congress and pointed out that the Senate has no African Americans. But Cardin, who won an early endorsement from President Obama, was better known around the state and far better funded than Muse.
Walking out of the polling site at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School, Don Allen said he voted for Cardin. Although he said he thinks there should be more African Americans in Congress, he thought Muse — who opposes same-sex marriage — “was too far to the right on social issues.”
Cardin is also favored in November against the eventual Republican nominee, particularly with Obama atop the ballot. Former Secret Service agent Daniel Bongino led ex-Defense Department official Richard Douglas in a tight race to face Cardin.
On the House front, author Ken Timmerman was the Republican pick to take on Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D). Republican activist Faith Loudon prevailed in the contest to face Edwards, while Del. Anthony J. O’Donnell (Calvert) won the GOP nod to oppose Hoyer.