Sen. Joan Carter Conway is running for re-election in 2018 but is vowing that the coming campaign will be her last.
Conway, the six-term Baltimore Democrat and chair of the Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee, said last week she plans to seek the seat once more. She’ll face a primary challenge from Del. Mary L. Washington, who formerly was a member of the district ticket led by the incumbent senator.
Conway, 66, said last week she’s running one more time to ensure the city has a strong voice when it comes to redistricting and for the upcoming debate in school funding and education reform recommendations made by the Kirwan Commission.
Conway is not only the city’s only legislator to chair a committee in the Senate, she is that chamber’s strongest and most vocal proponent when it comes to her home jurisdiction.
“I realized there was a problem with me leaving now,” Conway said. “That’s really my reason. That weight is on my shoulders. I know I can help the city.”
“I use my power and influence to hep my constituency and improve the quality of life in the the city,” she said. “That’s what it’s all about. That’s what I do.”
This is not the first time Conway has talked about retiring.
Earlier this year, Conway was packing up her office and said she was considering leaving.
Conway said the underlying concerns that caused her to consider leaving — caring for an aging mother and other family members dealing with illnesses — remain.
And once the issues around redistricting and education funding are settled sometime in the next term, Conway said her work is done.
“This is my final time to run,” Conway said. “I’m only coming back this time because of these two issues.”
“As some point, I’ve got to have some rest,” she said. “I never intended to stay this long.”