Krish Vignarajah’s recent campaign ad was evocative of the scene in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King when Eowyn, the Lady of Rohan, stabbed the Witch-king of Angmar in his Ringwraith face. No man could kill him, he said, well…Eowyn was no man.
I am not necessarily saying that Maryland Governor Larry Hogan is the Witch-king. He seems more akin Grima Wormtongue, but for the benefit of those who have not read Tolkien, I shall move on.
I am thinking about this in relation to the Governor’s race. Over the past couple of months, I had settled on the likelihood that I would not be endorsing a single candidate. With multiple excellent options, I thought I would make a game-day decision on Primary Day; I would vote for the progressive (Vignarajah, Jealous, or Madaleno) that the polling data revealed to have the best chance of winning the Democratic nomination.
But I have since re-considered that mind-set. I believe the Democratic Party needs to nominate a candidate who offers a clear and compelling contrast to Hogan (in matters of policy, communications, and optics); someone who has been consistently impressive on the campaign trail and who has demonstrated an in-depth knowledge of the issues that matter most to Maryland voters.
Thinking about a future gubernatorial debate, I reflected on several questions. Who do I most want on the stage facing off against Hogan? Who is best equipped to beat Hogan at such forums? Who can pull together a constituency large enough to defeat a fairly popular incumbent Governor in November? Knowing that the Democratic Party will come together after the Primary Election and rally behind any of our fine candidates, all of whom have a good chance of winning the General Election, who should be our standard-bearer?
That is why I am pleased to announce the Spartan Considerations endorsement of Krish Vignarajah for Governor. Simply stated, she is running on a smart platform on education issues (universal pre-K, free community college), on economic issues, on what her campaign describes as family issues (paid family leave, a state-run public health care option, gender equity, and improved public transportation, among other priorities), and on environmental/sustainability issues. Beyond a serious policy agenda, she also has demonstrated her considerable abilities as a communicator. She is a policy wonk who can deliver complex information (on policy challenges as well as solutions) in an accessible manner. Moreover, she has a strong background in public service that will serve her well as Governor.
Nothing against Jealous and Madaleno. They both have considerable strengths. That said, when I ask myself the question, who would be the best Democratic nominee for Governor? The answer, for the present author, is clear: Krish.