Monday was supposed to be a special day for the Doug Gansler, Maryland's Attorney General who normally loves to speak his mind in front of television cameras.
But the Democrat who wants be the next Governor of Maryland blew off reporters who had questions about the eye-popping story in Sunday's Washington Post questioning Gansler's alleged bad behavior on the road.
He showed up uneventfully, riding shotgun in his state-owned SUV. Gansler arrived at High Point High School in Beltsville to introduce his running mate.
"I'd like to announce the next Lt. Governor of the state of Maryland, Jolene Ivey," said Gansler to a crowd of about 100 in the school's front parking lot.
Overshadowing the announcement are reports Gansler, as Attorney General, routinely directed his Maryland State Police security detail to bypass traffic jams by driving on roadway shoulders and blowing through red lights while speeding to appointments and family functions -- lights flashing and sirens blaring.
"It's a great day for Maryland, a great day for Jolene Ivey, a great day the women of Maryland and Prince George's county," is all Gansler would say to us when we asked him to comment on the story and its allegations.
Gansler's running mate also refused to answer questions. We asked some of their supporters what they think.
"Nobody got hurt, nobody got injured," says Jacques Chevalier. "Nobody's insurance or our taxes haven't increased as a result of anything that he did so I think it's something we just ought to overlook."
"Everybody gets a little excited sometimes when they're delayed in a car," says Joe Tydings, who was U.S. Senator for Maryland in the late 1960s. "But we all do. We all make mistakes."
The Gansler campaign spokesperson told the Post the story was "politically motivated," an example of "tear down politics" and questioned the timing of the article because complaints about the attorney general's backseat driving were first raised and addressed two years ago.
"We're moving forward," says campaign spokesman Bob Wheelock. "If other people want to stay in the past with things that have been done, we're moving forward. Got a lot of work to do."
Wheelock also refused to answer questions about the selection of Ivey as Gansler's running mate.
At a private event in July, Gansler was secretly recorded saying the current Lt. Governor Anthony Brown has a campaign slogan that is in Gansler's words: "Vote for me. I want to be the first African-American governor of Maryland."
Now, Gansler has picked Ivey, who would be the first African-American woman to be elected Lieutenant Governor of Maryland.
Stay tuned. The primary election is eight months away!
WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
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