The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Opinion Here’s who The Post endorses for Congress in Maryland

Volunteers help voters sign in at the Eastern Middle School polling site on July 19 in Silver Spring. (Maansi Srivastava/The Washington Post)
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Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans in Maryland by 2-to-1, and the party’s lock on state politics is reflected in its two U.S. Democratic senators and eight-member House delegation, which includes just one GOP incumbent. Gerrymandering has cemented the Democrats’ advantage, stripping most congressional races of suspense.

Months of legal wrangling this year over a new electoral map did leave the GOP with a plausible shot at one Democratic-held district, Maryland’s 6th, which stretches west from the D.C. suburbs to the border with West Virginia. The incumbent, Rep. David Trone, has earned a third term.

Mr. Trone, who made a fortune as co-founder of Total Wine & More, is focused primarily on four issues — addiction, mental health, criminal justice reform and medical research. He has used his seat on the Appropriations Committee, as well as his clout as a major Democratic donor, to secure more federal funding for those priorities.

“My issues lend themselves to bipartisanship,” Mr. Trone said. “I’m in the middle, and America needs to be in the middle.”

In the GOP primary, we endorsed Mr. Trone’s challenger, state Del. Neil Parrott, a traffic engineer. But Mr. Parrott’s record in Annapolis makes clear that he would not be part of what’s left of the GOP’s pragmatic wing. That’s why Gov. Larry Hogan (R), whom Mr. Parrott sued over pandemic restrictions, has declined to endorse him. Mr. Parrott says he would focus in Congress on reducing the deficit; if his party wins back the House, as is expected, he would be part of a majority whose members are already threatening brinkmanship over raising the debt ceiling to meet obligations that the government has already made. He would also vote for the bill introduced by Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) to ban abortion nationally after 15 weeks and supports efforts that would make it harder to vote.

Elsewhere in Maryland, virtually all the Democratic incumbents are likely to coast to easy wins. In the 8th Congressional District, centered in suburban Montgomery County, just west of D.C., Rep. Jamie Raskin has been an insistent voice for fact-finding and justice on the committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, as well as Donald Trump’s part in it. Mr. Raskin, a constitutional scholar who led the second House impeachment of Mr. Trump, faces only nominal opposition and deserves reelection.

In the 4th District, centered in Prince George’s County, just east of D.C., the best choice is Glenn Ivey, who served two terms as the county’s elected chief prosecutor, until stepping down in 2011. Mr. Ivey, who also faces token opposition, was a pioneer in seeking tougher sentences for domestic abusers. He would fill the seat of Democratic Rep. Anthony Brown, who is running to be Maryland’s attorney general.

In the state’s lone race for U.S. Senate, Chris Van Hollen, who is finishing his first term as senator, is a highly respected incumbent who had a distinguished career as a lawmaker in Annapolis before seeking federal office. He faces no serious opposition and merits reelection.

The Post’s View | About the Editorial Board

Editorials represent the views of The Post as an institution, as determined through debate among members of the Editorial Board, based in the Opinions section and separate from the newsroom.

Members of the Editorial Board and areas of focus: Opinion Editor David Shipley; Deputy Opinion Editor Karen Tumulty; Associate Opinion Editor Stephen Stromberg (national politics and policy); Lee Hockstader (European affairs, based in Paris); David E. Hoffman (global public health); James Hohmann (domestic policy and electoral politics, including the White House, Congress and governors); Charles Lane (foreign affairs, national security, international economics); Heather Long (economics); Associate Editor Ruth Marcus; Mili Mitra (public policy solutions and audience development); Keith B. Richburg (foreign affairs); and Molly Roberts (technology and society).