Democratic congressional candidate Anthony Brown acknowledged in an email to supporters over the weekend that he did not have authority to use the NAACP's logo in an earlier email to mark the organization's anniversary.
On Feb. 12, Brown sent an email to supporters calling on them to "honor all those who stood up and fought to remake the world." The email did not suggest the NAACP, which is based in Baltimore, had endorsed his campaign for Maryland's 4th Congressional District, but it did include that group's logo.
On Sunday, the former lieutenant governor sent a follow-up email seeking to "clarify that the NAACP had no advance notice of our plans to send the message and did not authorize the use of its name or logo."
"My message was not intended to suggest that the NAACP endorses or supports my campaign," the Brown campaign wrote in the follow up message. "As a matter of longstanding policy, the NAACP does not endorse or support candidates for public office. The NAACP's logo and the invitation to contribute were included in the message through administrative error after I had approved the text of the message."
An NAACP spokeswoman confirmed that the organization, after the initial email was sent, asked Brown not use its logo, which likely precipitated the follow up message.
Brown is running in a crowded primary field for the seat that will be left vacant next year by Rep. Donna F. Edwards, who is running for Senate. Other candidates include former Prince George's County State's Attorney Glenn Ivey, Del. Joseline Peña-Melnyk, Warren Christopher and Terence Strait.
The 4th District includes portions of Prince George's and Anne Arundel counties and is widely considered safe for Democrats in the general election.