A day after Massachusetts GOP Senate candidate Gabriel Gomez called his opponent longtime Representative Ed Markey "pond scum," the Republican finds himself trailing in every poll, with an average spread of 10 points. In response to a reporter asking him about a Markey ad placing Gomez side-by-side with Osama bin Laden, the former Navy SEAL had this to say, "For him to be as dirty and low, pond scum, like to put me up to Bin Laden, he's just gotta be called what he is. That simple."
Gomez recently released an ad accusing Markey of comparing him to bin Laden. "Negative ads from dirty Ed Markey, smearing Gabriel Gomez, comparing him to bin Laden," a narrator says in the ad. The Markey ad referred to, witch shows images of Gomez and Osama bin Laden side by side, attacks Gomez for criticizing the president for releasing information about the raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
"It puts the troops in harm's way," Gomez explained, "and not only put the troops in harms way but their families in harm's way. Now we know what unit conducted the raids, what kind of aircraft they flew in there, and even made a movie about it afterwards." On Friday Gomez refused to apologize for calling Markey "pond scum," joking that "I don't have to go negative and if I really wanted to go negative I would have called him 'Congressman.'"
Markey responded saying Gomez's ad was a "new low" for Gomez with "baseless" accusations, but added he wouldn't engage in "name calling."
Gomez has been very critical of Markey's repeated votes against resolutions to honor the victims of 9/11, one of only 16 and 22 congressmen to vote against it in respective votes. Gomez has also jabbed at Markey's flip-flopping on the Patriot Act. Most recently, Gomez attacked Markey at a campaign stop with fellow Republican John McCain. "Ed Markey has always supported the victims of 9/11," the Markey campaign responded, "that's why he joined Democrats and Republicans like Ron Paul in voting against resolutions that blatantly politicized 9/11 and denigrated the memory of those who died. Gabriel Gomez should be ashamed of himself."
In turn, Markey has been very critical of Gomez's opposition to the assaults weapons ban and the limit on high-capacity magazines "like the ones used in the Newtown school shooting."
The two candidates, who are campaigning to fill the Senate seat left by now Secretary of State John Kerry, will hold their first debate June 5.