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Most Overused Campaign Prop (Editors' Pick)

Doug Duncan, Silver Spring Transit Center

It was an unwitting star of the 2014 Democratic primary campaign: Doug Duncan filmed his TV ads in front of it and used it as a repeated backdrop for press conferences. But in the end, Duncan’s strategy of using the Silver Spring Transit Center to pick off votes in Ike Leggett’s base in eastern Montgomery County failed to deliver—much as the center has yet to deliver for local transit patrons. When construction began in 2008, the structure was slated to cost $93 million and open in 2010. More than six years later, the cost is now north of $140 million and the center still hasn’t opened. So it remains very much Leggett’s headache as he heads into a third term, and one he is clearly eager to put behind him. At a joint appearance in Bethesda this past fall with Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker, Leggett jokingly offered to take National Harbor and its future casino off Baker’s hands—but only if Baker took the transit center off his.