Republican congressional candidate David E. Vogt III took to Twitter over the Independence Day holiday to offer an apology for comments about his primary opponent, former Secret Service agent Daniel Bongino.
Both Bongino and Vogt, a Marine combat veteran who served in Afghanistan, are vying in next year’s primary election for the District 6 seat held by Democrat John Delaney of Potomac.
On Wednesday, Vogt, of Brunswick, told The Gazette that while he respects Bongino, who lives in Severna Park, “I live in the district. I know what it means to fight for you, because I did. Dan can’t say either of those things.”
Vogt’s comments drew fire on Twitter, particularly from Republican blogger Jackie Wellfonder, who was co-coordinator of Bongino’s unsuccessful 2012 U.S. Senate run.
Wellfonder tweeted on Thursday that she was “pretty disappointed” that Vogt discounted Bongino’s service and that she hoped Vogt would apologize.
Shortly thereafter, Vogt tweeted to Bongino, Wellfonder and another user that “I 100% respect Dan and his service,” that “all I distinguished was the difference between those services” and that “the rest is confusion of intentions.”
A few minutes after that, Vogt tweeted, “I respect [Bongino] and his service & apologize for the misconception. I am dedicated to an honest campaign based on issues.”
Delany lives in Montgomery County, but not in District 6, which stretches north into part of Frederick County and includes all of Washington, Allegany and Garrett counties. Bongino’s home is in Severna Park in Anne Arundel County, in District 4.
Vogt, who was born in Florida, now lives in Brunswick in Frederick County.
Bongino declined to comment on the matter Friday, telling The Gazette that such comments spoke more about his opponents than they did about him and that his service record is public knowledge.
“I don’t think it’s a mystery to anyone,” Bongino said.
Bongino began his career with the New York Police Department in 1995, and joined the Secret Service in 1999.
From 2006 to 2010, he served on the presidential security detail, and was the lead agent responsible for President Barack Obama’s visit to an active war zone in Afghanistan, according to his campaign website.
Vogt served in the Marine Corps from 2004 to 2012, and was named Marine of the Year by the Marine Corps Times in 2010.
He is a full-time graduate student at American Military University, and expects to complete a master’s in political science in December.