Harry Dunn, a former Capitol Police officer who is among dozens running for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District, is up on air with the first TV ad in the race.

In the 30-second ad, Dunn speaks about his background and motivation to run over images of him walking to the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.

“For 15 years, I protected the promise that every one of us, no matter who we are, has a voice in our government,” Dunn says in the ad.

Then images of violence on Jan. 6, 2021 — when Dunn was among the officers who defended the Capitol building from a pro-Donald Trump mob — flash on the screen.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

“I approve this message because on this day, I didn’t fight against them,” Dunn says. “I fought for all of us.”

Dunn, a Democrat, makes no mention of his party affiliation in the ad. He is among 22 Democrats in a race that at least one poll indicates is wide-open with no clear front-runner. That poll showed Dunn with 7% of the vote and no candidate greater than 9%, with a 4.8 percentage point margin of error. More than half of those polled were undecided.

The 3rd Congressional District includes all of Howard County; a large swath of central, western and northern Anne Arundel County and a small portion of Carroll County. Dunn lives in Montgomery County.

The incumbent Democratic congressman, U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes, opted not to run for reelection this year.

Dunn’s campaign said the ad is a “significant six-figure buy,” but declined to offer further specifics. It airs starting Tuesday for “multiple weeks” on broadcast TV, cable TV and digital outlets, according to the campaign.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Dunn has not yet been required to file a campaign fundraising report, but his team told the website Maryland Matters in late February that they’d raised about $3 million, likely far outpacing the other candidates in the race.

Other notable Democrats in the primary include many state lawmakers: Sen. Sarah Elfreth, Sen. Clarence Lam, Del. Mark Chang, Del. Mike Rogers and Del. Terri Hill. The Republican primary has a field of nine candidates.

For the primaries, early voting is scheduled from May 2-9, followed by traditional Election Day voting on May 14.

Pamela Wood covers Maryland politics and government. She previously reported for The Baltimore Sun, The Capital and other Maryland newspapers. A graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park, she lives in northern Anne Arundel County.

More From The Banner