The campaign paid to run it on “Fox & Friends” in D.C. just so Trump would see it
A Democratic candidate in the Maryland gubernatorial race has made history with his new campaign ad, in which he takes aim at President Trump and Republicans and plants a kiss on his husband.
Richard Madaleno has served as a state senator for 16 years, and in the spot says he wants to become governor so he can “provide progressive results and stand up to Donald Trump.”
He then runs through a list of things he says he has “already done to infuriate him,” as well as the National Rifle Association and Betsy DeVos, like supporting Planned Parenthood, gun control legislation, and public education.
“And what’s the number one way I piss off Donald Trump and the Republicans?” he asks the camera, sitting with his husband of 16 years, Mark Hodge, and their two kids. He turns and kisses Hodges, before adding, “Take that, Trump!”
Hillary Clinton made history in 2015 by featuring a couple kissing in one of her presidential campaign ads, called “Equal,” but this is believed to be the first instance of a same-sex kiss between a candidate and their spouse in a political advertisement.
Madaleno is no stranger to making history. He is the first openly gay person elected to the Maryland House and Senate, and would be the state’s first openly LGBTQ governor if elected.
The 30-second spot began running in Montgomery County on Thursday morning, and in one other market, with one special viewer in mind.
“The refrain is ‘take that Trump’—so we wanted to make sure the president had an opportunity to see this ad, and went with the network he tunes into,” Keith Presley, Madaleno’s campaign manager, told USA Today of the decision to run the ad in the Washington, D.C. region on Fox & Friends, the president’s favorite show.
“At a time when the White House and other anti-LGBTQ politicians are attempting to erase our visibility and rollback our rights, Rich Madaleno is boldly stating he’s proud of his family and will fight for all Marylanders if elected,” said Mayor Annise Parker, President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund, which has endorsed him. “Not long ago, out LGBTQ people were unable to run for statewide offices such as governor, but voters now recognize there is an authenticity to LGBTQ leaders rarely found in today’s politicians.”
Having led the charge for marriage equality, achieving true equality and justice for all Marylanders will be my priority as Governor,” the candidate added. “June is LGBT Pride Month and I couldn’t think of a better time to release this ad. I am proud of my family, proud of my record of standing up for our progressive values and proud to be unflinching in standing up against hate. Love does truly trump hate.”
The primary will be held June 26.