Baltimore City Councilman Brandon Scott, often a critic of Mayor Catherine Pugh’s administration and a vocal proponent for law enforcement reform, announced he is running for lieutenant governor of Maryland on Feb. 15.

According to an email he sent out Wednesday morning to his constiuents, Scott has been tapped by gubernatorial candidate James Shea, an attorney with the Venable law firm and a former chair of the Board of Regents of the University System of Maryland.

Baltimore City Council member Brandon Scott jumped into the race for Lt. Gov Feb. 15. (Courtesy photo)

“I’m excited to join Jim Shea as his partner to be the next Governor and Lt. Governor of Maryland. As your Lt. Governor, I will be a voice for all Marylanders, including Baltimoreans and other Marylanders who feel like they don’t have a voice in the conversation. I will fight for a better education for our children, safer neighborhoods for our families, and expanded inclusive economic opportunity across the state,” Scott wrote.

Shea lags in statewide name recognition compared to other declared gubernatorial candidates like, Rushern Baker, county executive of Prince George’s County; Kevin Kamenetz, county executive of Baltimore County; and Ben Jealous, former president of the NAACP. However, Shea is one of only two candidates who began 2018 with more than a million dollars in the bank (Kamenetz is the other).

Scott, who is chair of Baltimore City Council’s, Public Safety Committee, had been seen as a likely candidate to challenge Mayor Pugh. But, his selection as Shea’s running mate would thwart the potential Pugh, Scott confrontation many had anticipated.

“Brandon is one of the greatest assets the City of Baltimore has,” said Del. Cory McCray (D-45), who represents a large swath of Scott’s East Baltimore district as a member of the House of Delegates. McCray argues Scott brings balance to Shea’s campaign.

“Baltimore City wins when Brandon is at the table…This brings young people back to the table. He crosses generational lines, ethnicity lines and income lines,” said McCray.

Only one other Democratic candidate, Jealous, has selected a running mate, Susan Turnbull, former vice-chair of the Democratic National Committee and former chair of the state Democratic Party. Gov. Larry Hogan is sticking with his current Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford. The deadline for gubernatorial candidates to officially select running mates is Feb. 27. The Democratic primary is June 26.

Sean Yoes

AFRO Baltimore Editor