Incumbent U.S. Rep. David Trone narrowly defeated Republican challenger Neil Parrott in Maryland’s sixth congressional district, the state’s most competitive congressional race.
Trone had won 50.2 percent of the vote, around 900 votes more than state Del. Parrott, when the Associated Press called the race Friday afternoon, with more votes expected to go in Trone’s favor. Trone’s victory means Democrats will continue to hold seven of Maryland’s eight seats in the U.S. House, with U.S. Rep. Andy Harris of District 1 as the delegation’s lone Republican.
Parrott conceded in a phone call to Trone Friday afternoon, Trone tweeted Friday.
The Democrat trailed behind Parrott as results trickled in late Tuesday night. A Hagerstown resident, Parrott gained an early lead with western Maryland — Garrett, Allegany, Washington, and Frederick counties — casting ballots in his favor, but mail-in ballots and the heavily Democratic Montgomery County steered Trone to victory.
Trone has served Maryland’s sixth congressional district since 2019. Parrott previously challenged Trone for the seat in 2020, winning 39.2 percent of the vote compared to Trone’s 58.8 percent.
After undergoing a lengthy redistricting process, the redrawn District 6 was more favorable for Republicans.
The Maryland General Assembly’s original redistricting map outweighed the more conservative parts of western Maryland with liberal areas in Montgomery County, giving favor to Trone. But Parrott and others challenged the map, and a judge threw it out, calling it an “extreme partisan gerrymander.”
The final map is more condensed, containing all of Frederick County and less of Montgomery. Frederick County swung to President Joe Biden in 2020 after leaning Republican in the previous two presidential elections.
Biden visited Hagerstown last month to support Trone. A day before, Parrott took to Twitter to share his thoughts.
“President Biden is coming to the 6th district of MD because Democrats think @davidjtrone might lose this election,” Parrott tweeted Oct. 6.
Parrott received support from U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, who visited Frederick in October to stump for the longtime state delegate. But Trone otherwise dominated the attention in the race, as he spent millions of his own money, giving himself the clear advantage in television advertisements.
Election analysts had eyed the race as one that could flip from blue to red, especially if Republicans made gains nationwide, as was widely expected. FiveThirtyEight gave Trone a 72 percent chance of winning the race and the Cook Political Report considered the race “likely Democrat.”
But Democrats exceeded expectations nationwide, and as of Friday afternoon, neither party had won control of the House or Senate. Democrats are expected to win the Senate, while Republicans will likely have a narrow majority in the House.