Gay Maryland state Sen. Rich Madaleno (D-Montgomery County) appears poised to officially declare his candidacy for governor in 2018.
The Washington Post reported Madaleno and two other Democrats who are expected to challenge Gov. Larry Hogan — Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamentz and former NAACP President Benjamin Jealous — spoke at the Young Democrats of Maryland’s convention in Lanham on April 1.
The Post reported Madaleno criticized Hogan, but he did not officially declare himself a candidate. Madaleno referred the Washington Blade to the Post article when asked whether he plans to run for governor.
Madaleno elected to General Assembly in 2002
Madaleno, 51, has represented the 18th Senate District since 2007. He became the first openly gay person elected to the General Assembly when he won a seat in the Maryland General Assembly in 2002.
The Montgomery County Democrat is among the lawmakers and advocates who led efforts to secure passage of the state’s same-sex marriage bill that then-Gov. Martin O’Malley signed into law in 2012. Madaleno in 2014 introduced a transgender rights measure that took effect later in the year.
Madaleno in June 2014 defeated Gender Rights Maryland Executive Director Dana Beyer in the Democratic primary. Madaleno was among those who considered running for then-Congressman Chris Van Hollen’s seat in the U.S. House of Representatives after then-U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) announced her retirement.
Van Hollen last November defeated House Minority Whip Kathy Szeliga (R-Baltimore and Harford Counties) in the race to succeed Mikulski. Congressman Jamie Raskin now represents Maryland’s 8th congressional district.
Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker and Congressman John Delaney are among those who are also expected to challenge Hogan in 2018. State Del. Maggie McIntosh (D-Baltimore City) has said she is no longer considering a run for governor.
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, who is bisexual, last November became the first openly LGBT person in the U.S. elected governor.