Alsobrooks Has Big Fundraising Lead; Edwards Claims ‘Grassroots Advantage’
By Bruce DePuyt
Angela Alsobrooks has sprinted past the opposition in the money chase for Prince George’s County executive, raising significantly more cash than the other Democrats seeking to succeed term-limited incumbent Rushern Baker (D).
Alsobrooks, the county’s top prosecutor, raised more than $777,000 in the past year, giving her just under one million dollars in cash on hand.
Former Rep. Donna Edwards (D), who announced her candidacy late last year and is expected to provide Alsobrooks stiff competition in the June primary, raised $158,830. But after $77,162 expenses, she reported $81,667 in her account.
State Sen. C. Anthony Muse (D) added $123,257 to his previous bankroll, putting him close to $300,000 in money raised for the cycle. But he was the only county executive candidate in Prince George’s, Montgomery or Frederick counties to spend more than he took in. His $212,147 in expenditures left him with $86,146 in cash.
Paul Monteiro, an official in the Justice Department during the Obama years, raised $60,100 but burned through most of it, leaving him $16,000 cash on hand.
“I’m really proud and grateful,” Alsobrooks said in an interview Wednesday. “I’ve shown up for Prince Georgians and now Prince Georgians have shown up for me.”
“The vast majority of our donations come from individuals,” not “rich people and developers. The numbers paint a very different picture than what my opponents have said.”
While Edwards raised a fraction of what Alsobrooks took in, her campaign said her contribution total represented “a huge grassroots advantage.” A news release issued by the campaign declared: “Unlike others in the race, Donna is running a campaign powered by people, not the well-financed interests that have exercised undue influence in the county in years past.”
Edwards also touted the support she has received from unions. She and Alsobrooks have both won endorsements from key labor organizations.
Former state senator and Prince George’s Councilman David Harrington, who is not aligned with any campaign, said, “It’s clear that Angela Alsobrooks has tapped into some support that others have not, and time is running out. I still think that message and getting out the vote matter. Angela has an advantage but it doesn’t mean the election is over.”
Harrington is head of the Prince George’s Chamber of Commerce, which has not endorsed in the executive race.
While Alsobrooks had five times the cash on hand of her rivals combined, Harrington does not see Edwards dropping out, but he said her relative lack of funds makes the race “an uphill climb.”
“The county is poised to have the first woman county executive,” Harrington said. Edwards “is going to use the strategy she used against [former U.S. Rep.] Albert Wynn. She’s going to say, ‘I represent the grass roots and the other person, they represent. They’re going to have to kowtow to the special interests.
“It’s going to be an interesting debate.”