Republican Kelly Schulz enters Maryland governor’s race
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Kelly Schulz, the head of Maryland’s Commerce Department, announced Wednesday she will seek the Republican nomination in the state’s 2022 governor’s race.
Schulz is the first Republican and first woman to enter the race.
“I’m running for governor so we can continue to build upon all of our past successes and fulfill the great promise and potential of our state,” she wrote in an online announcement. “Together, we can get Marylanders working, help our struggling families and small businesses, and restore and strengthen our economy.”
Maryland’s Commerce Department is the state’s main economic development agency, which has been focusing on providing financial assistance to Maryland businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Schulz is a former member of the Maryland House of Delegates, representing Frederick County. She joined Republican Gov. Larry Hogan’s administration in 2015 to lead the state’s labor department.
Meanwhile, Republican Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford announced he has decided not to run.
“After months of careful reflection and consideration, I have decided not to run to become the next Governor of Maryland,” Rutherford wrote in a statement posted on social media. “This was a decision that I made with my family’s best interest in mind.”
Hogan, who was re-elected in 2018, is term limited. Hogan was the second Republican governor in Maryland’s history to be re-elected in a state where Democrats outnumber Republicans 2-1.
Three Democrats have already announced their candidacy for governor. They are Comptroller Peter Franchot, former Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker and Jon Baron, a former nonprofit executive from Montgomery County. Other Democrats also are mulling a gubernatorial bid.