Wednesday, November 28, 2007

ANNAPOLIS — State Sen. E.J. Pipkin is expected to announce tomorrow that he will challenge nine-term Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest’s seat for his House seat.

Mr. Pipkin, an Eastern Shore Republican, will announce his candidacy tomorrow morning in Salisbury, several sources said today.

Mr. Pipkin was not immediately available for comment this afternoon.

“We have a great deal of respect for Senator Pipkin, and we think he’ll be a formidable candidate,” said Tony Caligiuri, Mr. Gilchrest’s chief of staff.

Mr. Pipkin becomes the fifth Republican to challenge Mr. Gilchrest for his seat, following state Sen. Andrew P. Harris, Baltimore business Robert Joseph Banks, Eastern Shore lawyer John Leo Walter and activist Joe Arminio.

Two Democrats are running against Mr. Gilchrest [-] Queen Anne’s County State’s Attorney Frank M. Kratovil Jr. and Christopher Robinson, an Eastern Shore lawyer.

Mr. Pipkin, a former investment banker, ran for U.S. Senate in 2004 but lost handily to incumbent Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski, a Democrat.

Mr. Pipkin, a multimillionaire, spent more than $2 million of his own money on the 2004 campaign and has been widely considered in state Republican circles as a likely candidate for higher office.

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