Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski Jr. won the Democratic primary for Maryland’s 2nd Congressional District, according to the Associated Press, as he seeks to replace retiring Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger.

“I will be a tireless advocate for our district and a champion for progress,” Olszewski said Tuesday night, speaking to a crowd of his supporters in the Duckpin Room at Union Craft Brewing in Baltimore.

Olszewski dominates 2nd District Democratic Primary

Chart refreshs every 60 seconds.

Del. Harry Bhandari, the Democratic candidate who came in second, could not immediately be reached for comment on Tuesday night.

Olszewski highlighted major issues he wanted to work on in Congress, including housing, protecting abortion care, infrastructure and the economy. When he thanked his wife, Marissa, the crowd applauded.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

He called for a new generation of leadership in Washington and said he was ready to take the lessons he’s learned in county and state positions to the Capitol.

Sen. Ben Cardin, a Democrat who is retiring, called Olszewski “the right person at the right time” for Congress.

Earlier in the night, the crowd at Olszewski’s victory party cheered loudly when they saw his commanding lead in the primary on a broadcast projected on the wall at the brewery. A few people softly booed when the Republican results were shown on TV.

Commentator and radio host Kimberly Klacik will face Olszewski after winning the Republican primary, according to the AP. Klacik, who raised millions in her unsuccessful 2020 run for Maryland’s 7th District after catching the attention of then-President Trump, could not immediately be reached Tuesday night. She posted a simple thank you message on social media.

Ruppersberger, a Democrat who held the seat since 2003 and announced his retirement early this year, endorsed Olszewski in February.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Olszewski was supported by several Maryland political powerhouses, including Sen. Ben Cardin, Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, Speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates Adrienne A. Jones and Comptroller Brooke Lierman. (Cody Boteler)

If Olszewski wins in November, it could lead to a political parlor game as the Baltimore County Council debates his successor.

The district has not voted for a Republican since 2000, and the seat is not considered competitive. Klacik has not held elected office before, though she has been a fundraising powerhouse.

1st Congressional District

Rep. Andy Harris, who’s represented the Eastern Shore plus the northeastern part of the state since 2011, easily won the Republican primary with nearly 79% of the vote around 8:45 p.m.

Harris cruises to victory in 1st District GOP Primary

Chart refreshs every 60 seconds.

Harris is the only Republican member of Maryland’s congressional delegation. The AP declared Blane Miller, a veteran and business owner, the winner of the Democratic primary around 10:15 p.m. Tuesday.

7th Congressional District

Incumbent Kweisi Mfume, a Democrat, easily won the primary for his party, gaining more than 88% of the vote as of 10 p.m. Mfume has represented Baltimore since 2020, when he beat Klacik in a special election after the death of Elijah Cummings. Mfume previously represented the district from 1987-1996 before departing to be president of the NAACP.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Scott Collier won the Republican nomination the 7th District, according to AP.

Mfume makes quick work of 7th District Democratic Primary

Chart refreshs every 60 seconds.

The seat has been in Democratic hands since 1950, which Mfume won with more than 82% of the vote in 2022.

Cody Boteler is a reporter on The Banner’s Express Desk, reporting on breaking news, trending stories and interesting things in and around Baltimore. His work has appeared in The Baltimore Sun, USA TODAY, Baltimore magazine and others.

More From The Banner