By BRIAN WITTE
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland’s Democratic and Republican Senate primaries are crowded this year with eight Democrats hoping to upset a popular and well-funded Democratic incumbent Tuesday.
For the GOP, there are 10 candidates hoping to win the nomination, including a former U.S. Secret Service agent and a former Bush administration official.
Democratic incumbent Sen. Benjamin Cardin is looking to beat back a challenge by Prince George’s state Sen. C. Anthony Muse.
Cardin, who served 20 years in the House of Representatives, has picked up key Democratic endorsements, including President Barack Obama, Gov. Martin O’Malley, Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Kweisi Mfume, a former African-American congressman.
Muse, a pastor, has been a member of the state Senate since 2007. Before that, he served in the House of Delegates from 1995 to 1999. Muse points to support from the Workers United union, an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union that has about 2,000 Maryland members.
There are seven other candidates in the Democratic primary, including Raymond Blagmon, J.P. Cusick and Chris Garner. Ralph Jaffe, Blaine Taylor, Ed Tinus and Lih Young also are on the ballot.
In the Republican race, former U.S. Secret Service Agent Daniel Bongino, of Severna Park, is running against Richard Douglas, a Bush administration defense department appointee from Bladensburg.
Bongino has been endorsed by several state lawmakers, including state Sen. Edward Reilly, and Delegates, Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio, Nic Kipke and Cathy Vitale. Douglas has received endorsements from former Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton, Maryland Delegate Bill Frank and former Maryland Republican Party Chairwoman Audrey Scott.
There are eight other GOP candidates in the race, including Joseph Alexander, Robert Broadus, William Capps and Rick Hoover. The other candidates are David Jones, John Kimble, Brian Vaeth and Corrogan Vaughn.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)