Angela Alsobrooks won the Democratic primary for the state’s open U.S. Senate seat Tuesday night and will face off against Republican former Gov. Larry Hogan in the general election.

The election will have local and national implications: The outcome could determine which party has control of the U.S. Senate, while Alsobrooks could be Maryland’s first Black woman senator and Hogan could be the first Republican senator from Maryland in nearly 40 years.

The Democratic race between Alsobrooks and rival David Trone had appeared close in the final days of the campaign, but a lead for Alsobrooks opened up as results rolled in Tuesday night.

The normally reserved Alsobrooks was ebullient taking the stage at a Greenbelt banquet hall late Tuesday, saying she made history and overcame the odds to win.

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Alsobrooks, currently the Prince George’s County executive, had cast her campaign as a David and Goliath story, contrasting her as a David against Trone, a wealthy congressman, as Goliath. Trone poured more than $60 million of his personal wealth into his campaign over the past year, outspending Alsobrooks by a 9-to-1 margin.

“I just want to say thank you — so sincerely to every single one of you. You have welcomed me in your living room. You have welcomed me in your backyard. You have had me at your dinner table. You have believed in me and I thank you so much and together, tonight, we have made history,” Alsobrooks said.

Trone, speaking at a party at the Baltimore Museum of Industry, said he had called Alsobrooks to concede. “Let’s get behind the nominee. Let’s figure out how to hold on to the U.S. Senate,” he said. “We cannot let the party of Trump hold our Senate.”

Trone did not indicate whether support for Alsobrooks would include any of his own considerable personal fortune.

Alsobrooks said she appreciated Trone’s call.

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“I want you to know that we are united and I’m focused in our focus to keep the Senate blue, and I am so grateful to have his support,” Alsobrooks told her supporters.

Senate Candidate Angela Alsobrooks celebrates alongside MD Gov. Wes Moore and on 5/14/24 in Greenbelt, MD.
Angela Alsobrooks celebrated her primary win with Maryland Gov. Wes Moore, Congressmen Steny Hoyer and Kweisi Mfume, and Lt. Gov. Aruna Miller. (Eric Thompson/For The Baltimore Banner)

The Alsobrooks campaign wasted no time in focusing on the general election campaign against Hogan, sending out text and email messages announcing victory and soliciting donations soon after the race was called.

“Tonight’s results prove that we’ve built an unstoppable Democratic grassroots movement,” the message read. “But we have a lot of work to do.”

Earlier in the evening, Hogan declared victory at his own party at an Annapolis hotel.

“Thank you Maryland!” Hogan boomed as he took the stage just after 9 p.m. to the sounds of the “Gonna Fly Now,” the theme song from “Rocky.” The Associated Press called the race in Hogan’s favor about 20 minutes earlier.

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“They said the Hogan brand of politics was dead, but once again, we proved them wrong tonight,” Hogan said.

Former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan waves during a primary night election party. (Daniel Kucin Jr./AP)

Hogan, who had long been critical of former President Donald Trump, defeated pro-Trump candidate Robin Ficker, who spent significantly more money on TV ads than Hogan.

He said he’s “completely fed up with politics as usual” and said he would fight for what he believes in, but “not to perpetuate polarization and paralysis” in Washington.

Alsobrooks emerges victorious in Maryland's Democratic Senate primary

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Tuesday night’s results included election day voting, in-person early voting and some — but not all — of the mail ballots that arrived early. The counting of mail ballots will resume on Thursday and continue into next week, along with the review and counting of provisional ballots.

The candidates are vying to succeed longtime U.S. Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin, a Democrat who announced last year that he wouldn’t run for reelection. Hogan’s entry into the race gives Republicans a better-than-usual chance in Maryland, drawing national money and interest as the state could determine the balance of power in the Senate.

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Alsobrooks and Trone, with few policy differences between them, made their campaigns about their backgrounds and style. They exchanged criticisms over how the other funded their campaigns, and both made the case that they’re better-positioned to defeat Hogan in the general election.

Senate Candidate Angela Alsobrooks speaks at her election night party held on 5/14/24 in Greenbelt, MD.
U.S. Senate candidate Angela Alsobrooks at her election night party in Greenbelt. (Eric Thompson/For The Baltimore Banner)

Debora Kess, 51, cast her ballot for Alsobrooks at Woodlawn High School on Tuesday.

Kess, an IT specialist for the state government, said her choice was a bit of a toss-up between Alsobrooks and Trone.

“She is female. She is African American, like me,” Kess said. “Let’s give her a shot.”

Jack Kerns, 86, voted for Alsobrooks at Timonium Elementary.

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“She’s more knowledgeable of what the average person experiences,” said Kerns, adding that as Prince George’s County Executive, Alsobrooks is deeply engaged in the issues facing Marylanders.

Kerns, who retired from the Maryland Department of the Environment in 2000, said he was turned off by Trone’s aggressive advertising techniques. The many flyers and ads were “just too much,” he said.

U.S. Rep. David Trone spent more than $60 million in his unsuccessful bid to be the Democratic nominee for the U.S. Senate in Maryland. (Jessica Gallagher/Jessica Gallagher)

Mary Walters, 77, cast her ballot for Trone at Dundalk Elementary School. She hadn’t followed the race too closely, but was persuaded by Trone’s onslaught of TV ads.

“They’re just so compelling,” Walters said.

But that doesn’t mean Walters would vote for Trone in the general election if he’s the nominee — Hogan will be her choice come the the fall. “I loved him as governor,” she said.

Votes are still being counted in Maryland’s Democratic Primary

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To her, a Trone-Hogan matchup would be ideal, because she’d be fine with whoever won.

“I told my daughter if Trone wins, I wouldn’t be sad about it,” she said.

Also voting at Dundalk Elementary, Scott Holupka said he wished Trone and Alsobrooks had done more to separate themselves on policy in the primary season. Because they’re so aligned, though, he said he’d have no issue for voting for either in November.

Ultimately, Holupka voted for Trone because he thought Trone would have the better chance of taking down Hogan in the general election.

Holupka, a member of the Baltimore County Planning Board, said of Hogan: “He was popular because he didn’t take any stands on controversial issues. Frankly, handing the Senate over to Republicans is not something I aspire to.”

Trone voted with his wife on election day. Alsobrooks, who had voted during early voting, went to the polls with her neighbor, Pat Adams.

Both hopscotched around Central Maryland Tuesday, making brief stops to greet voters and thank campaign workers.

“It’s about getting people first, people over politics, not taking the special interest money and actually getting stuff done,” Trone told reporters, standing under an umbrella in the rain at Cross Country Elementary/Middle School in Northwest Baltimore.

Election signs for Democratic Senate candidates David Trone and Angela Alsobrooks are seen outside Deer Park Elementary School in Owings Mills on Maryland’s primary election day. (Ulysses Muñoz/The Baltimore Banner)

Monday, both candidates made the rounds in Baltimore, an area where neither had a natural advantage at the start of the campaign season one year ago.

State Sen. Cory McCray went from table to table in Zeke’s Coffee, asking guests if he could introduce them to Alsobrooks. The candidate followed, telling voters how she launched her legal career in Baltimore, touting her accomplishments in Prince George’s and impressing upon them the importance of the election.

“This race is a really big race, determining control of the Senate,” Alsobrooks, clad in a black suit, campaign T-shirt and gray Puma sneakers, told one voter.

Trone meanwhile, worked the Orioles pregame crowd at Pickles Pub downtown on Monday. He slipped an Adley Rutschman City Connect jersey on over his dress shirt and, at least for a bit, sipped a Miller Lite.

Several O’s fans recognized Trone from his many TV commercials. To a group of teachers, he touted his teachers union endorsement; to several nurses, he talked about his 100% rating from Planned Parenthood.

Larry Hogan greets supporters before casting his ballot in the state primary election at Davidsonville Elementary School.
Larry Hogan greets supporters before casting his ballot in the state primary election at Davidsonville Elementary School. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Hogan also made campaign stops in the final hours. He had less to worry about than his Democratic counterparts, though Ficker did use his own money to put up TV ads that declared that he would support former President Donald Trump and fight illegal immigration.

Hogan and his wife, Yumi Hogan, cast their ballots Tuesday morning at Davidsonville Elementary School in Anne Arundel County.

“We’re excited to be casting our votes,” Hogan said. “We just made this decision 95 days ago to get in this race. We’re very excited about all of the support we found across the state.”

Later in the evening, Hogan supporters gathered at an Annapolis hotel to watch the returns. A stage sported Maryland and U.S. flags and giant message boards that read: “Send a message to Washington.”

Hogan’s former neighbors, Gloria and Myron Cramer, said while they don’t care for the “top person for the Republicans,” they were happy to support Hogan for the Senate.

“He’s just a nice person,” Gloria Cramer said. “Not full of himself like the other guy.” Added Myron Cramer: “He’d do a lot of good for Maryland and the country.”

Baltimore Banner reporters Liz Bowie, Hallie Miller, Lee O. Sanderlin and Julie Scharper contributed to this article.

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