Ben Jealous released his first advertisement since clinching the Maryland Democratic gubernatorial nomination in late June, a 60-second spot that will air in the Baltimore market for about a week.
The ad highlights Jealous’s work as a former president of the NAACP, where he turned around the beleaguered civil rights organization, and as a venture capitalist at Kapor Capital, where he helped grow several small businesses.
The ad, which cost $109,000, is the first response from the Jealous campaign to Gov. Larry Hogan’s advertising blitz. Hogan (R), who had $9.4 million on hand in late August, has already spent about $2 million on ads.
Jerusalem Demsas, a Jealous spokeswoman, said the candidate plans to be on the air until Election Day.
The ad is largely biographical, introducing Jealous as the son of two schoolteachers and describing his time at the NAACP and Kapor. It also mentions Jealous’s progressive agenda, which includes a single-payer health-care system, lower prescription drug prices and a 29 percent increase in teacher pay over seven years.
“Our message is to fully fund our schools, fix our broken health-care system and get our economy moving again,” Jealous said. “We’re confident that if we simply buy enough ads to communicate our message with the voters, we win.”
Jealous’s ad credits him with creating more than 1,000 jobs while at Kapor. While the companies grew during Jealous’s tenure, some companies were established before he began working there.
“We’re not saying Ben created these jobs on his own, but he has ensured that 1,000 good jobs exist today at these companies,” Demsas said.
The Jealous advertisement comes weeks after advertisements from Hogan and the Republican National Governors Association on Hogan’s behalf. The association ads attempt to cast Jealous as a socialist and a tax-and-spend Democrat.
“[Hogan] has sought to define me as something that I’m not,” Jealous said. “I’m someone who shows up every day with the heart of a civil rights leader and a mind of a businessperson that has created jobs in the state and around the country by building an inclusive 21st-century economy.”