Montgomery County wine magnate David Trone will run for the 6th District seat now held by Rep. John Delaney, who set his sights on higher office.
Trone, 61, announced his candidacy Wednesday morning in a video posted on his website.
“John Delaney is a good friend and a great representative. With your help, I’ll pick right up where John leaves off,” Trone (D) says in the video.
Delaney announced last week that he's not seeking re-election in 2018 and will instead run for president.
The announcement marks Trone’s return to politics after being defeated in the 8th District congressional primary last year and ends speculation over whether he would instead seek election to the office of Montgomery County Executive.
In the video, Trone outlines his campaign priorities.
Trone says he’ll fight the Trump administration and congressional attempts to “gut healthcare, women’s rights, education, the environment, social security.”
“But fighting to protect things isn’t enough,” he said. “Life’s purpose is to make things better.”
He pledged to work across the aisle to increase spending at the National Institutes of Health, push for transportation projects including I-270 and the Purple Line and honor veterans.
Trone also highlighted his personal history, from growing up on a Pennsylvania farm to growing Total Wine and More, which now has 172 stores in 22 states and more than 6,000 employees.
“Like many folks in Western Maryland, I grew up on a struggling farm, and I’ll protect that way of life and help champion programs to bring jobs to every part of the district,” Trone said.
The video and a campaign announcement also highlight his charitable giving.
Over the last three years, Total Wine & More donated $20 million to 7,000 local organizations. Trone and his wife June maintain a charitable foundation and the family has also been among the largest supporters of the American Civil Liberties Union, which is home to the Trone Center for Justice and Equality. Earlier this year, the Trones established a legal assistance fund for people impacted by Trump’s travel ban targeting Muslims, according to the campaign.
Trone’s wealth will likely have a significant impact on the race to represent the 6th. He has pledged not to accept any donations from corporations, lobbyists, or PACs. In the 2016 race for 8th District, Trone deposited more than $12.7 million of his own money into his campaign account.
During that campaign, Trone reported income between $13.7 million and $27.4 million in 2015 and assets between $17 million and $68.3 million to the clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Trone lives in a part of Potomac that’s within the 8th District, near the 6th District line.
Under the U.S. Constitution, members of Congress must live in the state they represent, but not in the district.
Bethesda Magazine reported this spring that Trone had opened a campaign office in a 6th District shopping center near his home.
Trone is the latest candidate to announce a bid for the Democratic nomination for the 6th District seat.
Montgomery County Democrats Aruna Miller and Bill Frick — both members of the House of Delegates — have filed with the Federal Election Commission to raise money to campaign for the seat. Montgomery County State Senator Roger Manno is also said to be considering a run. Frick and Manno also live in the 8th District.
Frederick County resident Andrew Duck (D) has filed to appear on the 2018 general election ballot.
The primary election on June 26, 2018. The general election is on Nov. 6, 2018.