Ad watch: In Baltimore County, Redmer plays up his alliance with Hogan

Al Redmer Jr., the Republican candidate for Baltimore County executive and Maryland insurance commissioner, is putting up a new TV ad in the final run-up to Election Day.

The ad features Redmer’s friend, Gov. Larry Hogan, playing up their political alliance. The campaign debuted the ad Monday on Facebook, and it’s set to air starting Tuesday on broadcast TV.

What the ad says:

The 30-second ad opens with a shot of Hogan, who says: “As a close friend and member of my cabinet, Al Redmer and I have worked side-by-side.”

The visuals move to shots of the two men and a classroom.

“Now, Al wants to bring common-sense, low-tax, pro-education policies here to Baltimore County,” Hogan says. “That’s why I endorse Al and I look forward to working with him to change Baltimore County for the better.”

The music swells to a triumphant tune and Redmer appears on screen. As he speaks, the imagery moves through images of Hogan and Redmer, a classroom and two men in safety goggles in a warehouse.

“I’m Al Redmer,” the candidate says. “As county executive, I’ll work with Gov. Hogan to demand accountability in our schools, encourage job creation and make Baltimore County safer and more affordable.”

The facts:

The Hogan-Redmer alliance isn’t just talk: The two men have been friends for years and Hogan is lending his name and popularity to help Redmer get elected.

Hogan headlined Redmer’s campaign kickoff a year ago, appeared at fundraisers, stopped by an early voting site last week with Redmer and is scheduled to join Redmer for a get-out-the-vote rally Tuesday evening in White Marsh.

Hogan appointed Redmer as state insurance commissioner. Whether the insurance commissioner is a member of the governor’s cabinet could be debatable. There is no official definition of who belongs to a governor’s cabinet, and Hogan certainly considers Redmer a member. Redmer often attends events alongside the secretaries who head up state departments, such as regional cabinet meetings.

The rest of the ad consists of general campaign promises, such as education accountability and keeping taxes low.

Analysis:

Much of Redmer’s campaign strategy relies on his relationship with Hogan, who won Baltimore County four years ago with 59 percent of the vote and remains popular.

Reminding voters that he and Hogan are a team is key to ensuring that if Hogan has coattails this year, Redmer rides them.

The ad also serves as a positive finishing note for the campaign, which earlier had a negative ad against Redmer’s Democratic rival, Johnny Olszewski Jr. That ad asserted that Olszewski would be a “big spending taxer” and tied him to Democratic gubernatorial nominee Ben Jealous, who trails in the polls.

Voters often say that they prefer positive ads over negative ones, but campaign operatives say that negative ads work. Redmer now has covered his bases, and the latest ad leaves voters with a positive image at the end of the campaign.

pwood@baltsun.com

twitter.com/pwoodreporter

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