A funny thing happened to Benjamin Cardin on the way to the Senate — Maryland’s crucial African-American voters, particularly those in Prince Georges County, started flirting with the candidacy of Cardin’s opponent, Michael Steele. Indeed, a number of prominent black P.G. County Dems went beyond flirting and endorsed Steele. The major reason? They believe the Maryland Democratic party establishment has taken blacks for granted.
With his lead apparently shrinking, Cardin visited P.G. County yesterday to rally African-American voters. He appeared with the current County Executive, Jack Johnson (the more influential past Executive, Wayne Curry, has endorsed Steele). Johnson told the crowd that Cardin is “one fantastic individual that will represent us in the United States Senate.” However, Cardin is not sufficiently fantastic to have received any prior public support from Johnson.
The rally turned sour when State Senator Nathaniel Exum berated Mr. Cardin for excluding him and other local delegates from speaking or being mentioned. Exum told Cardin, “You do the same [stuff] over and over again, just ignore us.”
Cardin later said, “I think he’s upset that we didn’t go over the names, but I’m not too concerned about it. He’s supporting us.” That sentiment is Cardin’s problem in a nutshell.
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