Democrat Kweisi Mfume wins special election to fill the late Elijah Cummings’ seat

Washington — Kweisi Mfume, the former head of the NAACP, won Tuesday’s special election for the Maryland congressional seat held by the late Congressman Elijah Cummings.

Mfume, a Democrat, defeated Republican Kimberly Klacik in the race to represent Maryland’s 7th Congressional District, which includes a large part of Baltimore and portions of Baltimore and Howard Counties, and will finish the remainder of Cummings’ term. He died in October at the age of 68.

Like other electoral contests held in recent weeks, the race to fill Cummings’ seat was upended by the coronavirus pandemic, which has led some states to postpone in-person voting and others to expand vote-by-mail. In Maryland, roughly 484,000 ballots were mailed to voters in the 7th Congressional District earlier this month, and the state Board of Elections strongly encouraged them to vote by mail as they work to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Still, three polling centers in the district were open after some raised concerns about voters who can’t vote by mail.

Mfume, 71, served as the president of the NAACP for nearly a decade and represented Maryland’s 7th Congressional District from 1987 to 1996.

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