June 26, 2018 at 10:46 pm EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
Jealous wins Md. Democratic gubernatorial primary

Benjamin Jealous, Ben Jealous, NAACP, Washington Blade, gay news, HRC National Dinner, Human Rights Campaign

Former NAACP President Benjamin Jealous will face off against Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan in the general election after he won the state’s Democratic gubernatorial primary on June 26, 2018. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Former NAACP President Benjamin Jealous on Tuesday won Maryland’s Democratic gubernatorial primary.

Jealous defeated Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker by a 39.8-29.4 percent margin.

Lawyer Jim Shea came in third with 8.3 percent of the vote. Krishanti Vignarajah, who was former first lady Michelle Obama’s policy director, and state Sen. Rich Madaleno (D-Montgomery County) came in fourth and fifth with 8.2 and 5.7 percent respectively.

Former State Department official Alec Ross came in sixth place with 2.3 percent of the vote.

Jealous will face off against Republican Gov. Larry Hogan in November.

Madaleno described Jealous as “an amazing person with a great story to tell” during a brief interview with the Washington Blade after he and Jenkins spoke to their supporters at the Marriott Bethesda.

“I hope people will listen to that,” added Madaleno.

Ross also congratulated Jealous.

“I look forward to helping Ben win this fall and to joining him on the trail to talk about his plan for preparing Maryland for the 21st century economy,” said Ross in a statement.

“I also want to congratulate the other participants in the Democratic primary on their spirited campaigns. We all have a lot to be proud of tonight,” he added.

Madaleno was poised to potentially become the country’s first openly gay governor if he were to have won the general election. Ross’ running mate, Julie Verratti, would have been Maryland’s first out lieutenant governor if she and Ross would have been elected in November.

The LGBTQ Victory Fund endorsed Madaleno.

Michael K. Lavers is the international news editor of the Washington Blade. Follow Michael

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