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Monday, October 30, 2006
Steele endorsed by African-American Democrats
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Former Prince George's County Executive Wayne Curry and five sitting council members crossed party lines Monday and endorsed Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele's senate bid.

Curry, who is black, charged that Prince George's African-American community has been long overlooked by the Democratic Party.

"We have been neglected, overlooked and disparaged in the sanctums of the Democratic Party...Prince George's County has been geographically redlined and stratified," Curry said in his endorsement remarks. "It is the place where there is more Democratic voting than any other place in Maryland..."

The council members: David Harrington, Samuel Dean, Camille Exum, Tony Knotts and Marilyn Bland are also black. The county's black population is nearly 66 percent, according to most recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Steele, the first black to serve in a Maryland state-wide office, is hoping to carry this blue state by appealing to a mix of Republicans, Independents and black voters who historically have backed Democrats. Steele faces Rep. Ben Cardin, D-Maryland, next week in the battle for retiring Sen. Paul Sarbanes', D-Maryland, seat.

--CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney
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