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Election 2022 Government & Politics

In Race for Attorney General, Brown Leads O’Malley in Fundraising

Retired Judge Katie Curran O’Malley (D) and Rep. Anthony G. Brown (D) are running for attorney general in 2022. Photos from campaign, Getty Images.

U.S. Representative Anthony Brown outraised former Baltimore City District Court Judge Katie Curran O’Malley in the last six months, new campaign finance records show.

Brown’s campaign reported late Tuesday that it has more than $1,239,247 cash on hand.

His campaign said it raised nearly $944,400 from January 13 to June 7.

O’Malley (D) raised just over $623,000 during that same period. She retained about $839,000 cash on hand, as of June 7.

Brown launched his campaign for state attorney general in late October, hours after incumbent Brian E. Frosh (D) announced he would retire rather than seek a third term.

O’Malley entered the race in December, seeking to follow in the footsteps of her father, J. Joseph Curran Jr. (D), the longest-serving elected attorney general in state history.

A poll by the University of Baltimore and Baltimore Sun released earlier this month showed Brown leading O’Malley 42% to 29% among likely Democratic voters; more than a quarter of those polled were undecided in the race. In late May, while the poll was being conducted, O’Malley was endorsed by the Washington Post’s editorial board.

According to the newly filed campaign finance report, Brown collected nearly $800,000 in individual contributions during the reporting period.

He also received multiple donations from current federal fundraising committees, totaling nearly $85,000. O’Malley didn’t receive any donations from such groups.

Some of Brown’s current colleagues in Congress also contributed, including Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D) of North Carolina’s 1st District, who gave $2,000, Rep. John Garamendi (D) of California’s 3rd District, who gave $1,500, and Maryland’s Rep. Kweisi Mfume (D), who represents the Baltimore area and donated $1,000.

The campaign was also bolstered by donations from multiple progressive political action committees, including The Collective PAC, which supports Black progressive candidates across the country, and the Progressive Majority PAC, which raises money for liberal candidates.

O’Malley collected more than $613,000 in donations from individuals. She also collected $7,234 from other Maryland candidate accounts, including $2,500 from former Maryland House Appropriations Chair Maggie McIntosh (D), $3,000 from Baltimore County Councilmember Izzy Patoka (D), and $1,234.04 from J.D. Merrill, O’Malley’s son-in-law who closed out a 2018 state senate campaign account this month.

O’Malley’s fundraising total includes a $20,000 donation to herself. Earlier this year, the Brown campaign was questioned about whether $40,000 in expenses for his federal campaign was improperly boosting his run for state office, which his campaign denied.

Brown’s largest costs in the new state report went towards salaries ($114,866), then fundraising ($103,151).

O’Malley’s biggest expenditures were employee salaries ($168,172) followed by media costs ($111,993); she reported spending no money on fundraising during this reporting period.

Brown released a statement saying his fundraising totals “show that our campaign’s vision is resonating with Marylanders.”

“We’re engaging with voters in every corner of our state, listening to their concerns and discussing how we can build a more just and equitable Maryland together,” he said. “We must have an Attorney General who is committed to breaking down the barriers that working families face. We’re getting that message out, we’re not taking any vote for granted and working hard to deliver a victory this July and in November.”

Catherine Larsen, O’Malley’s campaign manager, was dismissive of Brown’s take.

“It’s no surprise that a conventional politician and sitting Congressman like Anthony Brown can raise money,” she said. “But no amount of money can hide the fact that Brown has never tried a criminal case in Maryland and doesn’t have the experience voters want in their attorney general.”

The Republican race

On the Republican side, former Anne Arundel County Councilmember Michael Peroutka raised $23,972.80 from January 13 to June 7, $15,322.80 more than his opponent, former president of the Montgomery County Board of Elections, Jim Shalleck.

Peroutka hasn’t been in the race as long as Shalleck, but the former councilmember and controversial figure has already surpassed him in terms of fundraising.

Shalleck reported raising just $8,650; he retains $3,408 cash on hand. Peroutka retains a $33,627 cash balance.

Peroutka’s campaign carries an outstanding loan balance of $10,000 from February, while Shalleck retains $11,800 in campaign debt dating back to 2014.

Shalleck, a former prosecutor, got an endorsement from the Washington Post for the GOP primary near the end of this reporting period, which could lead to increased support going forward. In the Baltimore Sun poll, the GOP candidates were essentially tied among likely Republican voters, with nearly two-thirds undecided.


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In Race for Attorney General, Brown Leads O’Malley in Fundraising