Montgomery politics 2014: Waiting for Ike

April 23, 2013

The big shoe in Montgomery County politics — County Executive Isiah Leggett’s announcement on whether he will seek a third term in 2014— has yet to drop. The conventional wisdom is that he will run, but the continued absence of confirmation has effectively frozen the plans of those who aspire to the job or to seats on the County Council that might open up if Leggett leaves the stage.

A no-go from Leggett(D) could trigger a stampede, with Council members Valerie Ervin (D-Silver Spring), George Leventhal (D-At Large) and Marc Elrich (D-At Large) possibly joining colleague Phil Andrews (D-Gaithersburg-Rockville) and former county executive Doug Duncan, who are already in the race.

A yes from Leggett could leave just one, or possibly two council seats in play.

The 2014 Democratic primary (the county’s de facto general election) is still 14 months off, but some familiar names are seriously considering a run for Andrews’ District 3 seat. Acting Montgomery County Planning Director Rose Krasnow said this week she is looking at the race. Krasnow, a former Rockville mayor and council member, was conspicuously present at a recent Leadership Montgomery workshop on running a campaign. Gaithersburg City Council member Ryan Spiegel said he is likely to make the run.

Ervin said in January that if she decided to run for county executive she would do so regardless of whether Leggett was in or out. She sounds less certain about her plans now. If she opted not to run for executive or for reelection to her council seat, here will be no shortage of potential replacements. Evan Glass, chair of the Silver Spring Advisory Board, said “people have talked to me about it,” but that he doubted the seat would come open.

Montgomery County Board of Education President Christopher Barclay acknowledged his interest, but summed up what seemed to be everybody’s situation for the moment.

“It all depends,” he said.

Bill Turque, who covers Montgomery County government and politics, has spent more than thirty years as a reporter and editor for The Washington Post, Newsweek, the Dallas Times Herald and The Kansas City Star.
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