Maryland Comptroller Peter V.R. Franchot says he won’t endorse a candidate in the state’s 2014 Democratic primary for governor.
Franchot (D) said he has worked with and likes Democratic candidates Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, Del. Heather Mizeur (D-Dist. 20) Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler, and doesn’t plan to pick a favorite in the June 2014 primary.
“I’m going to be like Switzerland,” he said.
Franchot said he does plan to endorse the Democratic candidate for governor in November’s general election.
Franchot considered a run for the governor’s mansion himself, but announced in December that he wouldn’t seek the office, calling the comptroller’s position his “dream job.”
He was in Damascus on Thursday to present a proclamation to the Damascus Volunteer Fire Department for its service to the town’s residents.
Volunteers such as those at the fire company represent old-fashioned Maryland values, he said.
Darron Long, who has been chief of the Damascus fire company for 32 years, said the recognition was nice because it lets the members know their work is being noticed.
It also meant a lot that Franchot came to deliver the honor personally.
“It’s been really well appreciated,” Long said.
Franchot also presented a proclamation to Damascus’ Jimmie Cone restaurant, recognizing it for more than 50 years of providing ice cream and serving as a center of the community.
Franchot said he presents many proclamations to restaurants because they offer a lot of jobs in communities around Maryland.
Franchot said he remains concerned about the effect the government’s budget sequestration cuts have had on the state.
While there have been some small areas of recovery in Maryland, the state is not in a full economic recovery and sequestration adds to the anxiety of families and businesses, he said.
“We have a lot of angst,” he said.
But Franchot said he’s not sure it’s fair to blame July’s loss of about 9,300 jobs on sequestration, pointing out that nearby Virginia gained jobs during the same period.
Maryland Labor Secretary Leonard Howie said Monday the sequestration cuts likely had “some impact” on the job numbers.
“All I know is, there’s a lot of jobs we need to create in Maryland, and they’re not appearing right now,” Franchot said.