The Washington Times - June 1, 2011, 11:58AM

Daniel Bongino, 36, announced plans to seek the state’s Republican nomination in 2012 and challenge incumbent Democratic Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin.

Mr. Bongino, who has never run for elected office, spent the past 12 years in the Secret Service, according to his website. He served in its Presidential Protection Division for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack H. Obama.
Mr. Bongino said in a statement that he hopes to reverse policies that he argues have made the country “a follower and not a leader in the global economy.”


“Whether we are talking about education, health care, social programs or tax structure, Americans are the most creative entrepreneurs in history,” he said. “But they are being held back by our government.”

Mr. Bongino is a former New York City police officer who moved to Maryland in 2002 and lives in Severna Park, in Anne Arundel County. He has bachelor and master’s degrees in psychology and a masters in business administration.

He faces a likely uphill battle against Mr. Cardin, a first-term senator who spent 20 years in the House and 20 previous years in Maryland’s House of Delegates.

Maryland, a predominately Democratic state, has not had a Republican senator since Charles Mathias Jr. left office in 1987.

Mr. Cardin was elected in 2006 to replace retiring Democratic Sen. Paul Sarbanes. He earned the seat with a 10-percentage-point victory over then-Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele, a Republican.