Challenger Ivan Bates announced today he’ll host his own town hall after incumbent state’s attorney, Marilyn Mosby, refused to appear beside him in a public forum.
The Brew reported last week that efforts by the Roland Park Civic League to hold a state’s attorney forum at the Bolton Street Synagogue failed when Mosby spurned the invitation, which had been accepted by Bates.
A third candidate in the July 19 Democratic primary, Thiru Vignarajah, had not entered the race when the forum discussions took place.
Mosby had requested to speak at the Civic League’s March meeting, prompting some to question why other candidates had not been invited. At the last minute, Mosby canceled her appearance.
After the forum plan also fell through, Civic League President Claudia Diamond allowed Mosby to address the group at its April meeting.
“She is an elected official, and any time an elected official wants to meet with us, I think we ought to meet with her,” Diamond told members at the April 6 meeting.
Telephone Town Halls
Saying he was “setting the standard” in ethics and transparency, Bates announced today a telephone town hall on May 5 sponsored by his campaign.
Noting that almost 100,000 city households do not have broadband service, Bates said this and other town halls would cross the “digital divide” by allowing residents to call in questions on landline phones.
A signup link will be provided in the future, together with a schedule of other meetings to “cover a specific issue set in order to remain relevant across multiple demographics,” his campaign said.
Bates, a former prosecutor turned defense attorney, has posted a 20-page “prosecution plan for a safer Baltimore” to counter the epidemic of violent crime in the city.
Bates and Vignarajah ran against Mosby in the 2018 Democratic primary, splitting half of the vote (28% going to Bates and 23% to Vignarajah), while Mosby cruised to victory with 49%.
Winning the Democratic primary, in overwhelmingly blue Baltimore, is tantamount to winning the general election.