Apr 29, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Kweisi Mfume wins Maryland special election

Kweisi Mfume. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
Kweisi Mfume. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Democrat Kweisi Mfume defeated Republican Kimberly Klacik in a special election to succeed Rep. Elijah Cummings for Maryland's 7th congressional district on Tuesday, per AP.

Why it matters: The seat was left vacant in October by the death of Cummings, the chairman of the House Oversight Committee and one of the most prominent faces of the House Democratic caucus.

  • Tuesday's vote was largely conducted by mail due to the coronavirus, though three in-person voting centers were permitted to open.

The big picture: Mfume was widely expected to defeat Klacik, given that Democrats have a 4-1 voter registration advantage in the Baltimore-encompassing district.

  • Mfume held the seat for five terms prior to Cummings from 1987 to 1996 and served as chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, before leaving Congress to become president of the NAACP.
  • He ran for Senate in 2006 but lost in the Democratic primary to Ben Cardin, the current senior senator from Maryland.
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