The political arm of the Congressional Black Caucus will not endorse Rep. Donna F. Edwards in a competitive Maryland Democratic Senate primary against Rep. Chris Van Hollen, multiple sources confirmed.
The decision was first reported by Politico.
A meeting attendee said the Congressional Black Caucus PAC voted to table a decision to endorse Edwards, rather than holding a vote on the endorsement itself. Had the vote taken place, the attendee said, the board would have flatly denied Edwards its endorsement.
Factoring into the decision, according to this attendee, was the fact that several African American leaders in Edwards’s Prince George’s County have endorsed Van Hollen. Among them is County Executive Rushern L. Baker III.
“This result does not come as a surprise, given that former congressman turned lobbyist Al Wynn, whom Donna defeated in a Democratic primary in 2008, is an active member of the PAC board,” Edwards spokesman Ben Gerdes said in a statement.
Wynn declined to comment.
The board includes several current black lawmakers, but the majority of members come from outside Congress. Only a handful of Edwards’s 45 fellow CBC members have endorsed her: Reps. William Lacy Clay of Missouri, Robin L. Kelly of Illinois, Hank Johnson of Georgia and Gwen Moore of Wisconsin. However, polling suggests she maintains a strong lead among black voters in Maryland, who make up a large portion of the Maryland primary electorate.