Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown campaigning in 2010. (Aaron Davis — The Washington Post)

On Monday, though, O’Malley (D) made his support a little more vocal with an e-mail to supporters in which he says that “no matter what lies ahead for Anthony in public service, I know that I will be with him 100 percent.”

The e-mail credits Brown (D) with helping with many O’Malley administration initiatives, calling him “my partner day in and day out.”

The word “governor” does not appear in the e-mail, but O’Malley leaves little doubt about where he will stand in the 2014 Democratic primary.

“I urge Anthony to continue his public service and pursue the greatest possible level of public responsibility,” O’Malley says.

The e-mail also includes a link to Brown’s new Web site, where the trademark O’Malley shade of green is noticeably absent. Instead, viewers see a new Brown logo, in brown and blue.

Jockeying to succeed O’Malley, who is term-limited and looking at national office, is expected to intensify as soon as the November elections pass by.

Several other Democrats have been looking at the race, including Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler (D), Comptroller Peter Franchot (D) and Howard County Executive Ken Ulman (D). Del. Heather Mizeur (D-Montgomery) has also expressed interest more recently in statewide office and has not ruled out a run for governor.