Rep. David Trone (D-Md.) announced he is running for Senate on Thursday, days after incumbent Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) revealed that he would not seek reelection in 2024.
“I’m running for Senate because the clock is ticking,” Trone says in an announcement video, citing issues including drug overdoses, mental illness and the high incarceration rate of Black people in the U.S.
“Is any of this acceptable to you? To anyone? Not to me,” Trone says. “I know I may not be the establishment choice, but hey, why start now?” he says later in the spot.
Trone has represented Maryland’s sixth congressional district, which includes the northern suburbs of Washington since 2019. He is also the founder of Total Wine & More liquor stores. During his tenure in Congress, Trone has zeroed in on issues like criminal justice reform and opioid addiction. As a candidate, Trone likely will have an advantage when it comes to his personal wealth. In 2016, the congressman spent more than $12 million of his money in his House race.
More from The Hill: Cardin won’t seek reelection, opening up Maryland Senate seat
The Maryland congressman is the second Democrat to jump into the race to replace Cardin next year. Montgomery County Council member Will Jawando announced his bid on Tuesday. And other Democratic names have also been floated in what is likely to be a crowded primary, including Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) and Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks (D).
While the primary for Maryland’s open Senate seat could get contentious, Democrats have a clear leg up in the general election. The nonpartisan Cook Political Report rates the seat as “solid Democratic.” Additionally, Republicans were struck a blow in the state earlier this week when former Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said that he was not interested in running for the seat. Hogan, who is considered a centrist, would have been a formidable candidate in the deep blue state.