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The anti-Trump showdown being set up by a Senate primary in Maryland

Democrats and Republicans will select their respective nominees for the US Senate in Maryland on Tuesday and in doing so will set up the most unique race of the cycle.

Two leading Democrats, Congressman David Trone and Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks, are locked in a dead heat as the race enters its final hours.

The Democratic primary, which has grown negative in the past few weeks, carries incredible significance:the entrance of former Governor Larry Hogan into the race has given Republicans a breath of life and possibly their only real shot at winning the seat.

That dynamic is playing out in a year when Democrats hold the Senate by one vote and are looking desperately to protect that majority either for the start of a second Biden term or to throttle Donald Trump’s first two years in office.

Senate races in Maryland are not usually competitive; the state is reliably blue in terms of its congressional delegation. But Mr Hogan’s two terms in office left him with widespread name recognition and a reputation bolstered by beating cancer while in office.

His centrist record — including his signature on a bill banning fracking and his support for the Paris climate agreement — helped him distinguish himself as an outlier within the Republican Party even as he frequently picked fights with Democrats in the state legislature, who were forced to override his vetoes.

Mr Trone, a member of the House, is pursuing a strategy that may seem surprising unless one is already familiar with the Total Wine & More mogul. Owner of the prolific beverage megamart chain, Mr Trone has poured more than $61m of his own money into this race, making it the most expensive Democratic Senate primary in state history. That would be

Read more on independent.co.uk