Professor Allan Lichtman, chair of the history department at AU, plans to run for the Democratic Party nomination for a Maryland U.S. Senate seat while continuing to teach.
“I feel that students will be excited about [my campaign],” said Lichtman, who has taught at AU for 32 years. “I believe that running for senator would enrich my teaching and bring to life the great issues of our time…It should be a great educational experience.”
Lichtman plans to run a grassroots campaign with the help of students from Maryland and the District.. One of the professor’s campaign issues is the “grave danger” he says students in higher education face. It is becoming more expensive each day for middle class students to attend college, he said.
“Receiving a good education is part of the American Dream and it’s a shame that the country’s priorities seem to be in other places,” Lichtman said.
The seat is open after Sen. Paul Sarbanes (D- Md.) announced he will retire after five terms in the chamber, the Washington Post reported.
At least five other Democrats are considering a run, or have already started campaigns for the Senate seat. Among them are, Bethesda historian, a wealthy businessman and Lise Van Susteren, a psychiatrist. Van Susteren has a famous sister, Greta Van Susteren of “On the Record,” a Fox News investigative journalism program.
At least three Republicans have emerged as potential candidates for the seat, the strongest of which is Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele.
Lichtman said he initially decided to run because so many of the people of Maryland are “tired of business as usual in D.C.”
“I feel that I have the experience and the savvy to run for the Maryland Senate,” Lichtman said. “The bone of politics should operate for the working class of Maryland, we need to get the government to start meeting our needs.”
He said he intends to “shake the Capitol’s foundation on behalf of Maryland and the United States.”
Lichtman plans to fight for the individual property owner, because many Maryland landowners are having their property taken away by corporations. Personal freedoms are another priority for the professor, he said, citing the Terri Schiavo case of last spring.
Lichtman has been a regular columnist on Maryland politics and public affairs for the last fifteen years. He has also served as a political commentator for all of the major news networks. He comments regularly for CNN, he said.
“My advice to students who wish to run for public office in the future is to get involved,” Lichtman said. “Don’t sit on the sidelines, because like everything else, you must start small. Things like the presidency are always open for those who dare to dream.”