After a tough campaign, Democrat Wes Moore was elected governor of Maryland on Tuesday, beating Republican Dan Cox and becoming the state's first African-American to serve in that role.
Moore was projected as the winner by the AP agency, shortly after the polls closed at 8 pm on November 8.
Moore's win was followed by Democrat Anthony Brown for state attorney general, the first African-American elected to that post in Maryland history, and Democrat Brooke Lierman in the race for comptroller. Lierman is also the first woman elected to that position.
On Wednesday, Republican candidate Cox conceded defeat and congratulated Moore in a letter, surprising the media.
Moore is a bestselling author, former nonprofit CEO, and combat veteran who made a campaign pledge to create greater opportunity for Marylanders, strengthen education, and fuel economic growth.
In addition, he is recognized for his constant support for diversity and endorsed the Hispanic agenda during his campaign.
With the endorsement of Oprah Winfrey during the Democratic primary, Moore also met with President Joe Biden at Bowie State University on the eve of the election.
Moore's opponent, Cox, a constitutional attorney and first-term state delegate, reframed far-right conservative positions, against criticizing "critical race theory" and "gender identity indoctrination" in schools. and against the COVID-19 lockdown measures.
Moore's running mate, former state delegate Aruna Miller, emigrated from India and becomes the first Asian American elected statewide. Cheering and dancing erupted at the Democratic election victory party Tuesday night in Baltimore.
There, Moore thanked his supporters for believing that "our state could be bolder and our state could go faster."
The governor-elect has pledged to protect abortion rights, provide pre-kindergarten for all children in need, and work with police and communities to ensure public safety.
"In our Maryland," he said, "you will feel safe in your own neighborhoods, and safe in your own skin."
"Our administration will fight to give all Marylanders the opportunity to succeed," Moore added at the end of his victory speech.
That same night, in a speech, Republican Cox told his supporters: "I'm not going to lie to you, this is a tough race."
The outgoing governor, Republican Larry Hogan, tweeted around 8:40 p.m. Tuesday to announce that he had spoken with Moore and congratulated him on his victory, promising a "smooth and orderly transition."
LARRY HOGAN'S MESSAGE
It was sent by Twitter, the night of November 8. He says like this:
Governor Larry Hogan @GovLarryHogan
I recently spoke with Wes Moore and congratulated him on being elected as the next Governor of Maryland. There is no greater calling than public service, nor greater honor than serving the people of this great state.