Katie Baker
For Immediate Release

Gansler Wins First Televised Debate By Centering Crime and Public Safety

Gansler will hire 1,000 police and put SRO’s in every school

OWINGS MILLS, Md. – In tonight’s first televised debate of the gubernatorial race, former Attorney General Doug Gansler defined himself as the candidate best-suited to take on the number one issue on voters’ minds: crime.

The event was sponsored by WBAL and Maryland Public Television.

Gansler’s opening statement and response to a question on crime are transcribed below. His public safety plan can be read at safemaryland.com.

Opening Statement: 

“This election is about crime and criminal justice. I spent six years as a federal prosecutor, I spent eight years as State’s Attorney of Montgomery County, and I spent eight years as your elected Attorney General.

“I’ve been fighting criminals and gun crimes for 22 years. I recognize that we need to bring crime down while lifting justice up, and I recognize that crime occurs in disproportionately underserved areas and in communities of color.

“There’s no other candidate in this debate that has any background whatsoever in criminal justice. Think about that. The most important issue in people’s minds right now is crime and criminal justice and nobody here has any background in that whatsoever. So what we’re going to do as the only pro-business, pro-law enforcement candidate in this field is we’re going to put 1,000 more police officers on the streets, trained in de-escalation techniques, we’re going to put an SRO in every school so that your children are safe when you take them to school, and as the only major candidate who grew up in Maryland, I want to help you make Maryland safe again.”

Gansler further elaborated on his credentials and vision in the following response: 

“In terms of judges, currently the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals of Maryland and the Chief Judge of the Court of Special Appeals in Maryland worked in my office. I hired both of them. We need to have the best and brightest and smartest judges. Judges that understand that a woman has an absolute right to reproductive choice, that climate change is a real threat, but most importantly that crime is ravaging us. It’s holding Maryland back from its future. I argued in front of the United States Supreme Court. I won a unanimous decision keeping a sex offender in jail in Western Maryland. I ran the Joint Sniper Task Force, the Beltway Snipers, and we brought them to justice. I started the first domestic violence dockets, the first drug courts, the first family justice center in Maryland’s history. We’ll be bringing those in around the state. I started the first [fully-implemented] community prosecution office in the United States to work with community police. Crime is holding us back. We need somebody that understands how to fix that. It’s not summer camps or worrying about parole agents.”


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