Eighty-seven candidates are running for Maryland’s eight U.S. House districts—a decade-high

This year’s filing deadline for candidates running for Congress in Maryland was Feb. 9, 2024.

Eighty-seven candidates are running for Maryland’s eight U.S. House districts, including 58 Democrats and 29 Republicans. That’s 10.88 candidates per district, more than in the previous three election cycles. There were 8.12 candidates per district in 2022, 9.87 candidates per district in 2020, and 6.87 in 2018.

Here are some other highlights from this year’s filings:

  • The total number of candidates running for the U.S. House in 2024 is also higher than any other year this decade.
  • Three districts—the 2nd, the 3rd, and the 6th—are open, meaning no incumbents are running. That’s the most open districts in an election cycle this decade.
  • Rep. David Trone (D-6th) is not running for re-election in order to run for the U.S. Senate, while Reps. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-2nd) and John Sarbanes (D-3rd) are retiring from public office.
  • Thirty-one candidates—22 Democrats and nine Republicans—are running for the open 3rd Congressional District, the most candidates running for a seat this year.
  • Fourteen primaries—eight Democratic and six Republican—are contested this year. Fifteen primaries were contested in 2022, 16 primaries were contested in 2020, and 14 were in 2018.
  • Five incumbents—four Democrats and one Republican—are facing primary challengers this year. That’s fewer than in 2022, when six incumbents faced challengers, in 2020 when eight incumbents faced challengers, and in 2018, when six did.
  • Candidates filed to run in the Republican and Democratic primaries in all eight districts, meaning no seats are guaranteed to either party.

Maryland and two other states—Nebraska and West Virginia—are holding primary elections on May 14.

In Maryland, the winner of the primary election is the candidate who receives the greatest number of votes, even if they do not win an outright majority of votes cast.