Former Mayor Sheila Dixon formally conceded the race to reclaim her old seat, offering congratulations to the Democratic nominee for Baltimore mayor, Brandon Scott.
Scott, the City Council president, edged out a victory by slightly more than 3,100 votes.
Despite raising concerns about the execution of this election — Maryland’s first attempt at using mostly mail-in voting — Dixon’s campaign will not be pursuing a recount.
“With the current pandemic, protests and a presidential general election on the horizon, now is not the time for frivolous divisions, but for unity,” Dixon said.
This was Dixon’s second attempt at a political comeback. She was defeated in 2016 by then-state Sen. Catherine E. Pugh, by fewer than 2,500 votes.
The former mayor reminded voters throughout the drawn-out 2020 campaign of her reputation as a competent city manager and her success at driving down violent crime.
During Dixon’s tenure from 2007 to 2010, homicides in Baltimore dropped from 282 to 238 a year, and the violent crime rate went down each year. She was known for making smart hires, and focused on cleaning up the streets.
In 2010, she was found guilty of embezzling gift cards meant for the poor. As part of a plea agreement a perjury charge in the case, she resigned as mayor, was on probation for four years and could not seek office during that time.
She campaigned in bright red T-shirts that read #BringSheilaBack, and she was often greeted by voters with personal of stories of how she helped them during her time as mayor — and in the years since.
“I have watched members of my team grow,” Dixon said. “I have watched citizens across this great city get involved in ways they have never done before. Those are victories I cannot ignore.”
Scott took 29.6% of the vote to Dixon’s 27.5%.
Dixon said she offers her “sincerest congratulations to a young man who is a native of this city, a product of our public schools, a young man I have watched grow in public service.”
(Article written by Talia Richman)