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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A tea party group backed by billionaire conservatives plans to sit out the U.S. Senate race in Virginia.

News outlets report that Americans for Prosperity will not support Republican nominee Corey Stewart as he tries to unseat incumbent Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine.

Americans for Prosperity has been supported by conservative industrialists Charles and David Koch. The group spent heavily to help Stewart's opponent in the GOP primary earlier this year and was a major spender in last year's election for governor.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - With two leading candidates who have a shot at becoming Maryland's first black governor, the crowded Democratic gubernatorial primary reflects the state's changing demographics and the party's efforts to harness the energy of an increasingly diverse electorate around the country.

Recent polls show former NAACP President Ben Jealous and Prince George's County Executive Rushern Baker are leading in a close and crowded primary.

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LANGLEY PARK, Md. (AP) - Valerie Ervin has dropped out of the Maryland governor's race to endorse Rushern Baker in the Democratic primary.

Ervin made the announcement Wednesday in Langley Park with the Prince George's County executive, who is in a tight battle with former NAACP president Ben Jealous for the nomination.

Ervin says Baker is the candidate who has the experience to lead from the start.

Baker says the support of Ervin and her running mate Marisol Johnson is important, because their progressive agenda is grounded in real government experience.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Corey Stewart has won the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in Virginia and will face incumbent Tim Kaine in the November general election.

Stewart beat state lawmaker Nick Freitas and Chesapeake minister E.W. Jackson in Tuesday's race.

Stewart is a conservative provocateur who often feuds with members of his party. He's a one-time state chairman of President Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and nearly won the 2017 Republican nomination for governor.

He has pledged to run a "vicious" campaign against Kaine.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia primary voters are set to narrow the field of candidates in a variety of federal and local races.

Among the contests on the ballot Tuesday is that for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate. Three candidates are facing off for the chance to challenge Democratic U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, who does not have a primary opponent.

There are also primaries in nine congressional races, some in both parties. The most crowded is the Democratic race for the 10th District in northern Virginia.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Former Gov. Martin O'Malley is endorsing Rushern Baker in Maryland's Democratic primary for governor.

O'Malley said Thursday the Prince George's County executive has the integrity and ability to bring people together needed to be governor.

O'Malley, who served two terms, says he believes Baker is the candidate who is best able to "restore Maryland's leadership in public education and make our children winners in a changing economy."

O'Malley endorsed Baker at a news conference in front of the Maryland State House in Annapolis.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A candidate in Maryland's Democratic gubernatorial primary has asked a court to dismiss a lawsuit over her eligibility.

Douglas Horn filed the suit Tuesday, alleging Krish Vignarajah doesn't meet a five-year residency requirement. Vignarajah registered to vote in Maryland in 2006, but voted in the state for the first time in 2016.

She's said Maryland has always been home, even when she worked in Washington, where she voted for four years.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Larry Hogan doesn't have any primary opposition, but that's not keeping him from buying television ads leading up to the June 26 primary.

Doug Mayer, the governor's deputy campaign manager, said Thursday the Hogan campaign is spending $1.3 million on ads, which will air in the Baltimore and Washington-area media markets.

Mayer says they will begin airing next week and run up to the primary.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Larry Hogan and Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford have raised more than $1.2 million in a little over a month.

That's according to a memo Tuesday from Tom Kelso, who heads Hogan's campaign finance committee.

The money was raised between April 10 and May 15. That's after the state's legislative session, when the governor and legislators can't raise money.

Kelso says the governor's re-election campaign has more than $9 million in cash on hand. Kelso says $19.3 million has been raised in the last four years.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Democratic candidates for governor of Maryland are scheduled to endorse a plan to help protect the Affordable Care Act in Maryland.

The Maryland Health Care for All Coalition is announcing the candidates who support the plan on Wednesday at a news conference in Baltimore.

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