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A conversation: MD gubernatorial candidates Tom Perez, Wes Moore

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Tom Perez (left) is a lawyer and a former DNC Chair and both a US and MD labor secretary; Wes Moore is an author and former CEO of The Robin Hood Foundation, a large philanthropic organization. (courtesy photos)

Maryland voters head to the polls next week. Mail-in voting has already begun. Early voting starts Thursday. Election day is two weeks from Tuesday.

Today, it’s a special installment in our series of Conversations with the Candidates 2022Two of the three leading candidates in the Democratic primary for Governor join Tom for the hour to discuss the issues on the minds of Marylanders.

In early June, a poll published by the Baltimore Sun identified Comptroller Peter Franchot, non-profit executive Wes Moore and former Labor Secretary Tom Perez leading a 10-person field in the Democratic primary. Those three candidates polled in the low double-digits. A large number of respondents said they had not made up their minds.

In a poll released on Tuesday of this week, commissioned by WYPR, the Baltimore Banner and Goucher College showed the race between Mr. Franchot, Mr. Moore and Mr. Perez to be even closer than it was in early June. Those three candidates are now in a statistical tie. The other candidate who is closest to them is former Attorney General Doug Gansler, who is about ten points behind.

We invited the top three candidates to appear on Tuesday of this week. Peter Franchot’s spokesperson declined our invitation citing a schedule conflict. We tried a different date, today, and once again citing a schedule conflict, the Franchot campaign declined our invitation.

And so, we are pleased to welcome Wes Moore and Tom Perez to today’s conversation. They join us on Zoom.

Wes Moore is a best-selling author who has worked in the private and non-profit sector. He was most recently the CEO of the Robin Hood Foundation, a national philanthropic organization. And, full disclosure: he once hosted Future City, a public affairs show on WYPR. He has chosen as his running mate former Delegate Aruna Miller from Montgomery County…

Tom Perez is a lawyer who headed the Civil Rights Division in the US Justice Department, and served as MD labor secretary during the O’Malley administration. He was also appointed US Labor Secretary during the Obama Administration, and he was the chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). He has chosen as his running mate Shannon Sneed, a former Baltimore City Councilwoman…

We aren't taking phone calls today, but we welcome your emails (to: [email protected]) and Tweets (@MiddayWYPR) with questions and comments for our guests...

We begin with an opportunity for each candidate to say hello and explain why they deserve your vote.

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The State House in Annapolis, Maryland is home to the office of the Governor, and the venue for the MD General Assembly. (photo courtesy Senate President's Office_)