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A Running Mate for Duncan

Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan had just made it through a news conference in Annapolis rates today when a reporter asked him if we was nearing a selection on a running mate in the governor's race.

"Um, ah, we, ah, we're getting very close, yes," Duncan said, pausing for a moment more. "We'll be making an announcement next week."

Duncan was "very close" indeed. Word soon began circulating that he hard already secured Baltimore lawyer Stuart O. Simms for the job.

Simms is a former state's attorney in Baltimore who held two cabinet posts under Gov. Parris N. Glendening (D): secretary of juvenile justice and secretary of public safety and correctional services.

Simms shared the news this morning with members of his law firm, Brown, Goldstein & Levy, and Duncan is expected to formally announce the choice Wednesday.

Duncan aides had originally promised a pick by mid-January, and the campaign struggled in recent months over the strategic decision of adding a running mate from the Baltimore area or Prince George's County, the jurisdiction home to more Democrats than any other in Maryland.

Duncan's rival for the Democratic nomination, Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley, who is leading in polls, announced his pick of Del. Anthony G. Brown (D-Prince George's) in December, and Brown has been campaigning aggressively in the Washington area, as well as other parts of the state.

John Wagner and Tim Craig

By Phyllis Jordan  |  April 27, 2006; 3:29 PM ET
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Why isn't this news on the WaPo front page? You certainly put O'Malley news of this nature on page 1 above the fold.

Posted by: John | April 27, 2006 4:19 PM | Report abuse

My bad. I see it's up there. Apologies all around.

Posted by: John | April 27, 2006 4:21 PM | Report abuse

I have never heard of this guy.

Posted by: Who is Simms? | April 27, 2006 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Stu who? He may have been State's Attorney and a cabinet secretary, but I doubt he brings much to the ticket. Worse for Doug...since Simms was a recent Secretary of Juvenile Justice, then he needs to explain why that department is so dysfunctional.

Posted by: Baltimore voter | April 27, 2006 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I had expected with all the time they put into it that the Duncan campaign would finally be able to get a strong running mate. Simms seems like a good guy but doesn't bring anything to the ticket. This could be the first nail in the coffin for Duncan.

Posted by: Nick | April 27, 2006 7:01 PM | Report abuse

Duncan picked a great running mate, just not many people know he is great- yet. He is from Baltimore, has proven experience in government, both city and state, and has a stellar education. The Duncan team seems to have taken their time and picked the right person.

What has Brown done for O'Malley, lose him 11% points to Duncan (alone) over the past 6 months?

In the coming days when people learn more and more about Mr. Simms they will realize that the Duncan/Simms team is a proven, mature and respected ticket, whom as Gov. and Lt. Gov will steer this state towards greatness

Posted by: chris | April 27, 2006 7:58 PM | Report abuse

FINALLY! Now maybe Duncan can get the rest of his campaign in gear and start go full bore at O'Malley! First step, fire Arceneaux!

Posted by: Fred | April 27, 2006 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Simms is a decent man, but he won't get Duncan anywhere in Baltimore, the Baltimore Sun will see to that. They've already endorsed O'Malley in effect with their one-sided coverage. It's a damn shame.

Posted by: David | April 27, 2006 8:43 PM | Report abuse


I've been reading this blog for quite sometime and I am ASTONISHED by your hatred for Scott Arceneaux. Whats the deal?

Posted by: Been reading awhile | April 28, 2006 9:26 AM | Report abuse

As a Baltimore resident, I honestly couldn't pick Steve Simms out of a room of one. I don't know what he has accomplished in Baltimore or as an attorney in private practice. I do have concerns that if he is the Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor, he is going to have a lot of explaining to do on all the problems in junenile justic, etc.

Posted by: Matt | April 28, 2006 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I well remember Steve Simms' leadership in the Glendening administration and admire him completely. Unlike a lot of pols, he has not worked in public service for himself -- he works for the public. So he's modest and keeps his nose to the grindstone instead of pushing himself in front of cameras everyday. We need a lot more politicians like that. And he will get the job done for Maryland. He's extremely smart, well educated, knows the interests of real Baltimore and Maryland residents, because he is one. This was a non-obvious choice for Duncan, and an inspired one. I'm looking forward to people in the state getting to know Simms.

Posted by: Wayan | April 28, 2006 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Hey, That's funny. His name is Stuart not "Steve". At least he is well known, right?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 28, 2006 2:00 PM | Report abuse

"This was a non-obvious choice for Duncan, and an inspired one."

Hardly an "inspired" choice, my friend. Duncan ended up with Simms because no one else would take the job. ALL of the elected pols in MD that Duncan approached turned him down because they'd have to give up their seat to run on Duncan's ticket, and since it's a foregone conclusion that O'Malley will get the nomination, Duncan was left with the only person who would accept -- Stuart Simms.

Posted by: dean | April 28, 2006 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Duncan is by far a superior candidate than O'Malley, but I just feel Arceneaux is leading this campaign so badly, that he has ruined any chance of being able to catch O'Malley. A crime report came out earlier this week showing crime rising 4% in Baltimore. I have not yet heard Doug Duncan make a single comment about this. Duncan should have had TV commercials about this on the air an hour after that story came out, and yet, we still have nothing from Duncan. Yet another story the campaign could use to go after O'Malley wasted. For that, I blame Scott Arceneaux.

Posted by: Fred | April 29, 2006 9:33 AM | Report abuse

True, Steve Simms is at least famous....

Posted by: Steve or Stu | May 1, 2006 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Fred, your attacks on Arceneaux are completely uncalled for.

Duncan has jumped on nearly every press opportunity he can, but at this point the Duncan campaign now has internal polling data that these attacks on Baltimore are hurting Duncan more than they help.

Therefore, that's why Duncan has dropped the Baltimore attacks.

Also, don't be upset with Arceneaux's management skills, be upset with Duncan himself.

Posted by: Defending Arceneaux!!! | May 1, 2006 2:01 PM | Report abuse

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