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Who Will Win Montgomery?

Governor

Prince George's Del. Anthony G. Brown swaggered onto the home turf of Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan yesterday and made a bold claim: Not only will Duncan lose his bid for governor in this September's Democratic primary, but he will lose at home.

"We will win Montgomery County, and I guarantee it," said Brown, who is running for lieutenant governor with Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley. Brown shared his prediction at a noon rally that drew about 50 people to an O'Malley-Brown office in Rockville, Montgomery's county seat.

Duncan advisers, who dismissed Brown's claim as bravado, acknowledged that Duncan will have to carry Montgomery by a substantial margin to beat O'Malley statewide. Brown said his prediction was based in part on a recent poll that Duncan aides have sought to discredit that show the contest tighter than expected in Montgomery, as well as success in recent weeks in signing up campaign volunteers.

Yesterday's rally was called to mark the start of "More in Montgomery," an O'Malley effort to sign up 2,500 volunteers in the county in the coming month.

Duncan spokeswoman Jody Couser said her team was undaunted.

"Doug is extremely popular and his support will grow even stronger when voters learn that Mayor O'Malley favors expanding gambling, has failed to make education his top priority and failed on his promise to cut the murder rate in half in Baltimore City," Couser said.

Arnie Gordon, an organizer of Brown's rally, said that he considers Montgomery "very fertile ground for us," suggesting Duncan had alienated many Democrats in his dozen years as county executive.

Asked why the rally had drawn a relatively modest-sized crowd, Gordon said it as pulled together on "the spur of the moment" and faced another logistical challenge: "Because of Duncan's transit policies, it isn't easy to get here."

John Wagner

By Phyllis Jordan  |  May 18, 2006; 7:42 AM ET
Categories:  Governor  
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Comments

Jody Couser mentions that Doug is the only candidate against gambling. This is a strong point for me--but the first that I've heard it said from the Duncan campaign. Bring that message over here to Prince George's and you'll crush the othe guy (well, unless your polling tells you otherwise).

Doug Duncan--the only candidate against slots in Maryland.

Posted by: against gambling | May 18, 2006 7:57 AM | Report abuse

I'm from Prince George's, and I agree that the gubernatorial candidate that opposes gambling is the one that will get my vote. I already had been impressed by Duncan's positions AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS in the areas of education, crime and environment, but I hadn't been aware of his lone opposition to gambling before reading this thread. This cements my support. I'm a Duncan voter too.

Posted by: John | May 18, 2006 9:09 AM | Report abuse

It is true, Duncan will either lose his home county or will barely win Montgomery . . . look for the Duncan campaign to begin ramping up direct mail and other cheaper advertising in Montgomery as a way of shoring up support.

But the truth of the matter is that this will only be a face-saving measure for the Duncan campaign.

The writing is on the wall -- Duncan will lose statewide and possibly in Montgomery County.

Geez, how could The Washington Post get it so wrong about Duncan during the last 12 years?

Looks like the Post's lovefest with a guy who many say looks a lot like Bob's Big Boy is about to end.

Posted by: Duncan's Montgomery Poll Numbers In The Toilet | May 18, 2006 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Sounds like alot of bravado by pro-O'Malley folks to me.

Duncan has done a good job in Montgomery County, and let's not forget that the voting public in Suburban Maryland don't necessarily vote the way Baltimore does in an election.

The critical factor is which candidate has the better chance of unseating the current governor - and in all honesty I don't think voters can make a bad choice, as long as it's not Gov. Bob for another 4 years of a do-nothing administration.

Posted by: Paul | May 18, 2006 11:27 AM | Report abuse

I think Mr Duncan is doomed. His lack of leadership in Montgomery County will show. He has not been the County Executive for the people here, all he has done is been the County Real Estate Agent. Selling the county to developers.

Posted by: Riley | May 18, 2006 11:28 AM | Report abuse

so, in the state's most populous county and one of the most heavily democratic, O'Malley was only able to get together 40 people for a major rally and from that makes the claim he is going to carry the county???? I can get more than 40 people together to hear a lunatic stand on the corner and spew nonsense and this guy is supposed to be the great Democratic hope for governor? No wonder no one believes anything he says.

Posted by: Balt. Co guy | May 18, 2006 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I thought it would be news if Brown stood up nd declared that O'Malley would lose Montgomery Co. Let's keep our eye on the ball. Duncan's popularity is climbing. Once voters have an oppotunity to meet him and hear his message it becomes no contest. This race is about substance over style.

Posted by: Nancy in Ocean City | May 18, 2006 12:28 PM | Report abuse

I've said this before, but it's worth repeating:

This race is going to tighten up significantly between Duncan and O'Malley before election day and it will have almost nothing to do with what either campaign does or doesn't do.

In other words, Duncan can do anything he wants, including passing gas, and yes, the race will appear as if it's going to the wire.

But in the end, O'Malley's significant advantages (namely a reputation for dealing with tougher problems than Montgomery County has ever had to deal with) will lead him to victory in the primary.

So, I say let Duncan continue to pass all the gas that he wants: he's going to lose and he may actually lose his home county where something called Duncan fatigue has clearly set in.

You heard it here. Duncan's campaign is passing gas and they're going to lose.

Posted by: Duncan Passes Gas | May 18, 2006 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Duncan will lose MoCo big time. Even developers can vote only once. Say goodnight Dougie.

Posted by: Steve in Silver Spring | May 18, 2006 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Yes Steve, indeed, Duncan loves developers -- he always has -- when he loses the governor's race, he can always turn to Century 21 for a job -- he'd look great wearing one of those bright yellow jackets -- in fact, it's ironic, isn't it, that Duncan's campaign colors are bright yellow -- just like Century 21.

The color yellow is a signal to developers that if elected, Duncan will do whatever they want.

Hell, Duncan has spent the last 12 years trashing the remaining open space left in Montgomery County with the Washington Post standing on the sidelines leading three cheers for Doug -- it really is disgusting, isn't it?

Posted by: Steve in Silver Spring Knows That Duncan Passes Gas | May 18, 2006 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Can the Duncan and O'Malley staffers on here at least talk about something we ALL agree on for once? That Peter Franchot will make a GREAT Comptroller?

Posted by: Charley in Prince Georges | May 18, 2006 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Look at Montgomery County now and look at it 12 years ago. After 12 years with Duncan, we have overcrowded schools with "learning shacks" instead of classrooms. We have a county that is an illegal immigrant gang magnet, with day laborer centers that are funded with taxpayer money. We have the Strathmore, which can't survive without a $10,000,000 per year county subsidy. We have more potholes and more traffic congestion than ever. The crime rate, while still low, is the highest since records have been kept. Our property taxes are also higher than ever, even the the cuts in the tax rate.

Forget about whether Duncan will carry Montgomery. It would be hard to imagine Duncan winning outside of Germantown and Silver Spring.

Posted by: Brandy | May 18, 2006 4:06 PM | Report abuse

I read that the Baltimore Sun's coverage of the event was inaccurate at http://www.thesunlies.com. They said it was more like 25 people and not 40 and many of them were staff members? Since the O'Malley staffer members read and comment in these forums maybe they could tell us what it was?

Posted by: Larry | May 18, 2006 4:53 PM | Report abuse

I have never much cared for Duncan, having had my first exposure to him in 1994 when he knocked on my door during his first campaign for County Executive. I've not been pleased by his pushing the ICC or what seemed to be grandstanding during the sniper rampage. But my feelings turned to absolute disgust when, during the 2002 elections, he ran a smear campaign against then-Councilmember Blair Ewing. I must have received five or six automated voicemails (which I've never liked anyhow) from Duncan's cronies, decrying Ewing for his opposition to the ICC. So I voted against Duncan -- and I wrote in Ewing for Councilmember At Large.

I am not excited about O'Malley because of the gambling issue. But I cannot bring myself to vote for Duncan over O'Malley. If Duncan wins the primary, I will vote for him... reluctantly, wishing I had a *good* candidate to support for governor.

Posted by: Annie | May 18, 2006 6:12 PM | Report abuse

You do Annie, you've got Ehrlich.

Posted by: Bryan | May 18, 2006 7:15 PM | Report abuse

It's really pretty amazing, the arrogance from the O'Malley crowd. You see it every time with them, now Brown too. O'Malley thinks he can squint his eyes and everyone will BELIEVE what he's saying. Pure arrogance. Ughh.

Posted by: Roberto in Bmore | May 18, 2006 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Ha, did anyone see O'Malley released his "energy plan." Some plan that was! He copied the text from SB265/HB1004 then called it his own. Yah, and by the way, that bill didn't even get out of committee. And this is the guy who wants to be Governor who can't even think up his own ideas? Who is he kidding?

Posted by: Bryan | May 18, 2006 10:36 PM | Report abuse

I was impressed that Mayor had the courage to take PSC to court and prevail. That was his own idea and is the only blow struck for consumers in this mess. Now, it appears consumers will get to see if the 72% is for real after corporate bonuses and stranded costs are accounted for. BGEhrlich's rubberstamp PSC shows the problem w the current administrtion, its about holding power, not using it to promote public policy. THis race is bn DD and MOM, and it appears the Ehrlich/Bryan camp doesnt want to face MOM. That says alot.

Posted by: Rocket | May 19, 2006 3:46 AM | Report abuse

Since our governors office is the prize to secure corporate looting of the public, I will faithfully search out the money men who finance any contenders campaign either up front or through back door channels. Is there any true populist candidate? If there were would they be given suitable press coverage? Where are the journalists uncovering and exposing what the voters need to know to make an informed choice?

Posted by: DIEbold | May 19, 2006 10:51 AM | Report abuse

That's an ironic posting DIEbold since our Governor actually expressed his concerns with diebold voting machines and also the suppose flaw-proof early voting process they'd employ.

Anyway, back to the subject at hand, where'd the MOM people go? I wanted to hear their ridiculous claims about winning Montgomery County. I don't like Duncan, didn't care too much for him as my County Executive, but I will tell you he's definitely more popular than Mayor O'Malley in Montgomery County.

Posted by: Bryan | May 21, 2006 8:24 AM | Report abuse

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