MARYLAND — Yesterday, Republican gubernatorial nominee Dan Cox emerged in damage control mode after a weekend of ducking reporters to finally attempt to explain away the videos of him accepting a token of appreciation from the Maryland Proud Boys and a separate encounter in which he poses for pictures with his Proud Boy supporter. The 15-second clip pulled from his campaign’s Vimeo page shows a man in a black polo shirt with a Proud Boys insignia grab Cox’s attention, shake his hand and very clearly state “Here, this is a present from Maryland Proud Boys to you.”
After handing Cox the present, the man explains “It’s a comb. A Proud Boys comb.” Cox then asks the man’s name and he answers “Henry,” which Cox easily hears and repeats back before shaking Henry’s hand again. In the interview, Cox stuck to his “it was very noisy in there” defense, hoping viewers buy that he missed both the description of the gift as “a present from Maryland Proud Boys” and then as “a Proud Boys comb.” Or that Marylanders don’t simply watch the video for themselves and observe the lack of background noise during the exchange.
Cox claimed the video was not vetted because he has a small campaign staff, echoing his excuse from when he caught heat for his account on the anti-Semitic platform Gab. The now-deleted video, however, was uploaded weeks after the primary and the remaining five August uploads featuring supporter interactions don’t even total five minutes combined. A single staffer could have reviewed the entire batch before their morning coffee cooled, easily catching the multiple unmistakable “Proud Boys” references.
“Dan Cox’s lies are an insult to the intelligence of every Marylander,” said Maryland Democratic Party spokesperson Ernest Bailey. “Anyone who takes 15 seconds to watch that video will hear exactly what Dan Cox heard: A man twice clearly identifying himself as a representative of the Proud Boys. And they will see Cox respond with eager approval.”