Baltimore Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young started a TV ad campaign Friday, painting himself as the solution to corruption in City Hall.
The ads, which tout Young’s efforts to outfit Baltimore Police with body cameras and establish the city’s Children and Youth Fund, began airing as part of a media buy Young’s campaign described as “sizable."
The ads, which are running on network and cable television, according to spokesman Myles Handy, make Young the third candidate in the crowded Democratic field to take their campaign to viewers’ TV screens. Former U.S. Treasury official Mary Miller launched her TV campaign Monday, focusing on youth and crime. Former Deputy Maryland Attorney General Thiru Vignarajah began airing his ads, also focused on crime, in November.
Young’s spot opens with the word “corruption” superimposed over an aerial shot of downtown. A narrator says Young became mayor to “clean up City Hall.” The ad states Young has implemented a plan to reduce crime and keep children off the streets. Over a soaring soundtrack, the ad says Young is responsible for opening the city’s recreation centers on Saturdays.
“We feel like he has a substantial number of accomplishments in Baltimore,” Handy said. “We’re excited to tell the story of Jack Young."
Young joined the City Council in 1996. He rose to council president in 2010, and automatically became mayor in April when Democrat Catherine Pugh went on leave as federal investigators probed her “Healthy Holly” book deals with organizations with business before the city. She resigned in May, after the FBI raided her office and houses, and has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and tax fraud.
The candidates who have entered the TV advertising race mirror the likely front-runners in the race for campaign cash. Young had nearly $960,000 cash on hand, according to his Jan. 15 campaign finance filing, while Vignarajah reported having about $840,000 on hand after raising more than $1 million.
Because she entered the race close to the finance deadline, Miller did not have to file a fundraising report last month. But the more than $500,000 ad buy she made this week signaled she, too, is likely in the front of the fundraising pack.
Handy declined to specify the amount of Young’s TV ad purchase.
Young also has five campaign billboards in the city, and is airing radio ads, Handy said.