Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown (D), who announced his campaign for governor last week, should get some national television exposure Saturday: He is scheduled to present the trophy to the winner of the Preakness Stakes in Baltimore.
Brown has been asked to stand in for Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), who has a family obligation that will keep him from the second leg of horse racing’s triple crown for the first time since he becoming governor in 2007, aides to both O’Malley and Brown said.
The presentation of the Woodlawn Vase has traditionally been part of NBC’s coverage of the Preakness, which draws millions of viewers.
Though the moment will be fleeting, Saturday’s event underscores one advantage Brown has over his challengers for the 2014 Democratic nomination: a chance to look gubernatorial before the election takes place.
Having secured O’Malley’s formal endorsement last weekend, there are likely to be plenty of other opportunities for Brown to stand in for the governor in coming months.
In the Democratic primary, Brown is expected to face Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler (D) and Del. Heather Mizeur (D-Montgomery). Howard County Executive Ken Ulman (D) and Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.) are also looking at the race.
Ulman has been in talks with Brown, however, about joining his ticket as the lieutenant governor candidate.
A half-dozen Republicans are also looking at the race to succeed O’Malley.