Democrat John Delaney is on the air with his first radio and television ads of his general election campaign as he seeks to rebut charges being leveled against him by his Republican foe, Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (Md.).
Delaney, a newcomer to electoral politics, is the founder of the Chevy Chase commercial lending firm CapitalSource, and Bartlett released an ad earlier this week attacking Delaney’s business record. The ad — and a separate mailer on the same subject, technically paid for by the state Republican Party — marked the incumbent’s first sustained assault on Delaney since the challenger won the Democratic primary.
Bartlett’s ad accused Delaney’s company of owning nursing homes where seniors were mistreated, and said CapitalSource “backed a landfill” that illegally accepted trash and polluted nearby water. Delaney says those companies got loans from CapitalSource but he never actually managed either of them. Delaney’s spot accuses Bartlett of leveling “untrue attacks.”
“John Delaney has never even run a nursing home or landfill,” the ad’s narrator says. “But he has helped thousands of small businesses, creating Maryland jobs. Bartlett voted against the minimum wage 24 times, against family and medical leave, to cut Medicare. He’s part of the Washington mess. For jobs, vote John Delaney.”
Delaney is also up with a radio ad that calls Bartlett an “original founder of the Tea Party in Congress” with “one of the worst environmental records in Congress.” The spot notes that Delaney “built two businesses” in Maryland and has “real plans” to create jobs.
Bartlett spokesman Ted Dacey said his campaign stood by the allegations against Delaney.
“If John Delaney wants to make his career in business the centerpiece of his campaign, he is going to have to take responsibility for the nursing homes his company owned and the landfill his company financed,” Dacey said. “John Delaney can call it false all he wants, but the facts are clear.”
The fact that Bartlett and Delaney are sparring over which man has the better environmental record illustrates where their message is aimed — Montgomery County, where voters tend to be liberal on such issues. A slice of Montgomery was added to Bartlett’s district this year in the remapping process.
This post has been updated since it was first published.