Prince George’s Dems Set Hearing for Candidates Who Want to Replace Gaines

    The Prince George’s County Democratic Central Committee will hold a public hearing on Oct. 29 to hear from people interested in replacing former Del. Tawanna P. Gaines (D) in the General Assembly.

    Gaines resigned on Oct. 4 and was charged by the Justice Department of one count of mail fraud after allegedly pocketing more than $22,000 in campaign contributions. She is due to be arraigned in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt on Thursday.

    Under state law, Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R) will pick Gaines’ replacement following a recommendation from the Prince George’s central committee. The filing deadline for candidates interested in filling the vacancy is Oct. 24.

    The hearing for would-be replacements in District 22 will start at 7 p.m. and be held in the auditorium of the Maryland-National Capital Park & Planning Commission Parks & Recreation Administration Building at 6600 Kenilworth Ave. in Riverdale.

    Candidates will speak in alphabetical order for two minutes each. They can also bring two people with them to second their candidacies, in speeches that are to last no more than two minutes.

    Potential candidates include Nicole A. Williams, an attorney and former member of the central committee who ran unsuccessfully for the House in the 2018 Democratic primary; Greenbelt Mayor Emmet V. Jordan, a member of the central committee; Ashanti Martinez, an aide to Prince George’s County Councilman Thomas Dernoga (D), who also ran for the seat in 2018; and Rushern L. Baker IV, an artist and community activist who sought a House seat in 2014 and is the son of former Prince George’s county executive Rushern L. Baker III (D).

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    Josh Kurtz
    Co-founder and Editor Josh Kurtz is the leading chronicler of Maryland politics and government. He began covering the State House in 1995 for The Gazette newspapers, and has been writing about state and local politics ever since. He later became an editor at Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper, and spent eight years at E&E News, an online subscription-only publisher of news websites covering energy and environmental issues. For seven of those years, he led a staff of 20 reporters at E&E Daily, which covers energy and environmental policy on Capitol Hill and in national politics. For 6 1/2 years he wrote a weekly column on state politics for Center Maryland and has written for several other Maryland publications as well. Kurtz has given speeches and appeared on TV and radio shows about Maryland politics through the years.