WASHINGTON - Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler has made it official: he's running for governor.
The Montgomery County Democrat kicked off his campaign across the street from the Montgomery County Courthouse where he served as Montgomery County State's Attorney.
Gansler's facing a stiff challenge from Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown of Prince George's County. Brown announced his candidacy in May and chose Howard County Executive Ken Ulman as his running mate in June. Gansler has yet to make his choice of running mate public but says he'll make the announcement by early October.
Gansler shrugged off the advantages Anthony Brown has in having served as Lt. Governor and getting endorsements - the latest from Senator Barbara Mikulski. Gansler said he's run as an underdog before; in his races for Montgomery County State's Attorney and the race for Attorney General.
"I was told there's no way you can run, there's no way you can win in both of my campaigns."
Gansler touted his record as a prosecutor and what he called his passion for the environment, but said he'd make jobs a priority in his administration.
"The jobs issue is very real as we watch people and companies fleeing the state and we confront billion dollar deficits every year," said Gansler.
Gansler added that his comment shouldn't be seen as a swipe at Gov. Martin O'Malley's record but that he, Gansler, is focused on the future.
"I'm not your candidate if you want the status quo."
While saying he wanted to foster an environment in which Maryland based businesses thrive, he also said he wants to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10 an hour.
Along with Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, Maryland Del. Heather Mizeur is running in the Democratic primary.
WTOP's Kate Ryan contributed to this report.
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