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GOP backlash against Ed Markey’s Osama bin Laden attack ad on Gomez

Photo of Patrick Howley
Patrick Howley
Political Reporter

Democratic Massachusetts Senate candidate Ed Markey’s recent television attack ad, which crops his Republican opponent Gabriel Gomez’s face next to an image of Osama bin Laden, has sparked local and national backlash from Republicans.

Markey released an ad last Thursday criticizing Gomez, a former Navy SEAL, for working as a spokesman for the group Special Operations OPSEC Education Team, which has criticized President Obama for allegedly revealing “sensitive intelligence information” related to the killing of Osama bin Laden by Seal Team Six. Markey’s ad features a shot of Gomez’s face next to Osama bin Laden’s.

Former U.S. Attorney Mike Sullivan, who ran a hard-fought primary race, endorsed Gomez in a speech Tuesday afternoon at an outdoor presser in which he called Markey’s attack ad “outrageous” and “despicable.”

“The thrust of his remarks was that Ed Markey should take down this ad,” Gomez campaign spokesman Will Ritter told The Daily Caller.

Washington Republicans also condemned Markey’s ad. (RELATED: Gomez, Markey in tight race for Massachusetts Senate

“Ed Markey’s first post-primary ad against Gabriel Gomez is as bizarre as it is offensive,” Republican National Committee chairman Reince Preibus said Tuesday. “It’s unconscionable that he’d juxtapose a picture of Osama bin Laden with that of Gabriel, a Navy SEAL who has served his country honorably. It’s a sign of his true political desperation.”

Markey’s ad, above all, was “clumsy,” said Gomez campaign spokesman Will Ritter.

“People in Massachusetts are smart enough to figure out what Ed Markey is trying to do,” Ritter told TheDC.

Gomez, meanwhile, released an optimistic ad Monday called, “Future,” in which he discusses his family’s emigration to America.

“People saw a stark contrast between the two ads,” Ritter said.