Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown in a debate on Wednesday night. (Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post)

Maryland Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown, an Army reservist who was deployed to Iraq nearly a decade ago, on Thursday announced the launch of a new group to bolster his campaign for governor made up of veterans and military families.

Brown (D) kicked off the effort at the Omaha Beach #7 Disabled American Veterans Post in Bowie, where he was joined by more than two dozen veterans who pledged to work for his election this year.

Brown faces Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler and Del. Heather R. Mizeur (Montgomery) in the June 24 Democratic primary.

Brown told the crowd Thursday that he considers the primary “the bigger objective” in a state in which registered Democrats outnumber Republicans more than 2 to 1.

“We take that hill, and then we’ve got a little bit of a mole hill to take in November,” Brown said.

After spending five years on active duty in the Army as a helicopter pilot in Germany during the waning years of the Cold War, Brown has served for the past 25 years in the Army Reserve, in which he is currently a colonel.