Elijah Cummings's daughters back former aide over widow in race to fill seat
© Getty Images

The late Rep. Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsGOP leaders encourage retiring lawmakers to give up committee posts Pelosi taps Virginia Democrat for key post on economic panel Democratic challenger on Van Drew's party switch: 'He betrayed our community' MORE’s (D-Md.) daughters announced this week that they are endorsing his longtime aide in the election to fill his seat instead of Cummings’s widow, Maya Rockeymoore Cummings. 

Jennifer Cummings issued a statement Tuesday stating that she and her sister, Adia Cummings, are supporting Harry Spikes in the election. Spikes worked with Elijah Cummings for 15 years, according to their statement, The Washington Post reported.

“My sister and I are supporting Harry Spikes for Congress because for the past 15 years he’s worked alongside our father to meet the needs of the people of the 7th Congressional District,” she said in the statement, The Washington Post reported. “Harry knows this community. Our father often said of himself that he was ‘an ordinary man called to an extraordinary mission,’ and Harry embodies that same spirit.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Jennifer Cummings on Tuesday said Spikes represents the "next generation of leadership” and that he “has the unique ability to build a multi-generational and diverse coalition of support.” 

“Dad would say, ‘This isn’t about me. This is bigger than me,’ ” she said. “And Harry knows the mission to serve is bigger than him — it’s about the people of Baltimore City, Baltimore County and Howard County.” 

A crowded field of candidates are running for Elijah Cummings’s seat following his death last month. A total of 24 Democrats and 8 Republicans have entered the special primary election set for Feb. 4. The general election is set for April 28, and the winner will serve out the rest of late lawmaker's term through the end of 2020.  

Former Democratic Rep. Kweisi Mfume (Md.) and Rockeymoore Cummings are both nationally recognized figures in the race. Mfume is a former head of the NAACP, and he held the seat before Cummings.

Rockeymoore Cummings, Cummings’s second wife, formerly served as the chairwoman of the Maryland Democratic Party.  

State lawmakers Sen. Jill P. Carter (D) and Dels. Talmadge Branch (D) and Terri L. Hill (D) are also running for the seat.