One day after Doug Gansler faced the news media on his behavior at a high school graduation beach party, his running mate complained about the "dirt" being thrown at their campaign.
Jolene Ivey appeared on WAMU radio Friday where she defended the Democratic candidate for governor and sympathized with the choices he had to make.
Ivey chose her words carefully as she answered questions about her running mate and what advice she may have given him since the Baltimore Sun published a picture of the attorney general at a high school beach party where there may have been underage drinking.
It is another in a series of embarrassing stories that have come his way in recent weeks.
Ivey took a seat at the radio roundtable called The Politics Hour with Kojo Nnamdi around 12:30 p.m. Friday where she attempted to discuss the challenges facing Marylanders today.
But instead, she was pulled into the controversy surrounding her running mate and his behavior is now making national news.
"You know we have to all admit that Doug Gansler has already said that what he did was wrong,” said Ivey. “He did the wrong thing. He should have handled it differently. And you know, how many of us parents haven't done something that we regretted as parents? We are not perfect. None of us is perfect.”
Ivey, a member of the House of Delegates and a Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, went no farther than that and suggested it was all part of a dirty political game.
"The issues right now, none of them are fun, but if you take each of them separately, there are things that I'm sure the other side is trying to throw dirt every time we’re making progress," said Ivey.
During his news conference Thursday, Gansler faced an aggressive group of reporters, including one network correspondent who got up close and personal with the candidate asking: "Is that your hand with the cell phone taking a picture?
“No, that's my hand, but my guess is what I'm doing is reading a text,” Gansler responded.
We showed the clip to political analyst Lenny Steinhorn.
"I don't think the question itself, as oddly as it was phrased, was inappropriate because you have a picture there, it looks like he could have been taking a picture, and therefore if he was standing there doing that and observing and having fun at the party, which was contrary to what his statement was, then it suggests he was complicit in any of the activities that were going on because he wasn't stopping them,” Steinhorn said.
Ivey said Gansler only went into the party because his son was not responding to the text messages he was sending.
Steinhorn says Gansler may be able to survive the scrutiny but “no politician wants to be accused of hypocrisy or abusing the perks of office. And if those become a meme, if that becomes a frame for how people see his candidacy, that's going to be trouble for him so he has to get out ahead of this story.”
In recent days, the attorney general has also had to respond to allegations he abused privileges with his security detail and failed to pay a speeding ticket in the District.
Gansler says he knows where these stories are coming from, he is a big boy and it all comes with the territory.
He’s got eight months to get his campaign’s message out with the Democratic primary scheduled for June.
WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
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