Allies of Senate Democrats are preemptively going on the attack against Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan.
Hogan, who will be term-limited out of the governor’s mansion after the 2022 election cycle, has been pushed to run for Senate this year by some Republicans, who believe he presents a real chance to win a seat in a heavily-blue state. Now, allies of Senate Democrats are running ads attacking the governor before he’s even announced a potential campaign.
Save My Care, a Democrat-aligned group dedicated to protecting the Affordable Care Act, launched a new ad campaign in February attacking Hogan for an alleged “nursing crisis” during the COVID-19 pandemic. The ad blames Hogan for difficulties faced by some nurses in renewing their licenses.
The organization spent more than $300,000 to run the ad in the Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, D.C. media markets, according to a report on the ad buy reviewed by the Daily Caller.
Save My Care, along with connected organization Protect Our Care, are staffed up by former consultants, pollsters and operatives for Democratic Senate campaigns. The organization is registered as a charity to contact Brad Woodhouse, a former communications director for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and several Democratic lawmakers.
Woodhouse is also the executive director of Protect Our Care, another Democratic healthcare advocacy group. Members of Protect Our Care’s leadership team include Geoff Garin, a former staffer and pollster for numerous Democratic Senators, Chris Jennings, a former Senate staffer who’s now a Democratic healthcare consultant and Luke Albee, former chief of staff to Democratic Senators Mark Warner and Patrick Leahy.
The ad campaign began after Hogan’s wife, Yumi, met with Elaine Chao, the former Transportation Secretary and wife of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, where the latter advocated for a Hogan Senate run. It also came after a recent internal poll, reported by the Daily Caller, found Hogan ahead of incumbent Democratic Senator Chris Van Hollen by 12 points in a hypothetical matchup.
Internal Poll Shows Larry Hogan Up Big In Maryland Senate Racehttps://t.co/J2KFCCk4l4
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) January 12, 2022
“Nothing says national Democrats are terrified of Larry Hogan more than pouring hundreds of thousands of dollars into the bluest state in America — all to prevent him from winning an election he has never once expressed interest in,” Republican strategist Doug Mayer told the Daily Caller. “We all know 2022 is going to be bad for them but this is just pathetic. Good luck fellas.” (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Larry Hogan Supporters Launch New Ad Campaign Ahead Of Maryland Legislative Session)
Save My Care has no other content of any kind on its website other than the ad attacking Hogan. Its Twitter account had not tweeted in nearly seven months before tweeting the attack ad against Hogan. Save My Care also has the same parent organization as Protect Our Care, Arabella Advisors.
Hogan has publicly downplayed speculation on a Senate run, saying he’s focused on serving out his term as governor. But with the Senate tied 50-50, some Republicans have argued that having a competitive race in a blue state like Maryland could help turn the tide back toward a GOP Senate majority.