Gov. Larry Hogan’s campaign began a new online ad that portrays him as a bipartisan problem-solver among the discordant political voices in Washington on the issue of health care.
Building on some of the legislative successes of this year’s General Assembly session, the Republican governor positions Maryland — and himself — as an oasis of common sense in contrast to the chaotic way Washington has dealt with Obamacare and President Donald Trump’s efforts to scrap it.
The one-minute, 45-second ad is a polished and accurate portrayal of Hogan’s effort to work with Maryland Democrats on health care.
What the ad says: The ad begins with a newscaster saying “now to the developing story about our health care.” It follows with clips of national politicians making angry statements during last year’s debate on repealing Obamacare.
You hear Trump thundering that “Obamacare is a complete disaster.”
He’s followed by video of California Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, shouting “they don’t know what the hell they’re talking about.”
Speeches by Senate Majority Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) are all featured in the ad.
The scene shifts to an aerial shot of the Maryland State House as Hogan’s calm voice intones that “it seems that neither political party in Washington has the ability to fix these problems. But our state will need to address them head-on.”
After a shot of Hogan signing what appears to be legislation, a newscaster says “the governor’s signature stabilizes health insurance rates projected to increase by 50 percent.”
Hogan reinforces the theme as a video clip shows him at a podium saying “stabilize our market, stabilize rates, and prevent these massive rate increases.” Back comes another newscaster saying Hogan has signed two bills intended to stabilize insurance rates.
The scene shifts to one of Hogan at a bill signing with Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller and House Speaker Michael E. Busch, both Democrats. The newscaster’s voice says both Democrats praised the bipartisan effort.
Busch appears in news footage saying : “Everything that government should be is in this health care package.”
Then Hogan returns. “This is an example of what can be accomplished if we work together.”
The ad ends with another Washington image and the words “While Washington Fights,” followed by the image of an African-American girl wearing pink and holding an American flag. Then comes a smiling, waving Hogan. As he walks the words “Maryland Leads” appear on screen.
The facts: Hogan and the Democrat-controlled General Assembly crafted and approved a bipartisan package of bills to shield Maryland residents from the worst possible effects of Obamacare changes. The effort has been widely viewed as a model for other states. .
Analysis: The message reinforces the image of Maryland, under Hogan’s leadership, as a model of bipartisanship compared with Washington.