Democrat frontrunner in tight Senate race drops racial slur during House hearing

The Democrat frontrunner in what could be one of the most closely watched Senate races this year uttered a racial slur during a Thursday House Budget Committee hearing, something he says was unintentional. 

Rep. David Trone, D-Md., dropped the disparaging term for Black people while speaking during the hearing about tax policy with Shalanda Young, the director of the Office of Budget and Management, who was testifying before the committee.

"So this Republican jigaboo that — it’s the tax rate that’s stopping business investment, it’s just completely faulty by people who have never run a business," he said. "They’ve never been there. They don’t have a clue what they’re talking about."


Representative David Trone, a Democrat from Maryland and US Senate candidate, during a roundtable discussion on federal policy goals for women's health issues in Rockville, Maryland, US, on Saturday, Dec. 9, 2023. Trone, the Maryland Democrat, who's

When reached for comment, Trone admitted to Fox News Digital he used the term, but said he misspoke while meaning to use a different word.

"Today while attempting to use the word ‘bugaboo’ in a hearing, I used a phrase that is offensive. That word has a long dark terrible history. It should never be used any time, anywhere, in any conversation," Trone said.

"I recognize that as a White man, I have privilege. And as an elected official, I have a responsibility for the words I use — especially in the heat of the moment. Regardless of what I meant to say, I shouldn’t have used that language," he added.

Earlier this week, Trone faced heat for other comments he made at a candidate forum earlier this month in which he declared his support for granting citizenship and voting rights to the millions of illegal immigrants residing in the U.S.

He holds a fundraising and polling advantage among a crowded Democrat primary field. His closest challenger is Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks, who is Black.

Fox News Digital has reached out to Alsobrooks for comment.

Early polls suggested a tight race between the two. However, a Washington Post/University of Maryland poll released Wednesday showed Hogan with a double-digit lead.

Elections analysts rate the race as "likely" Democrat, but Hogan's name recognition and high approval rating at the conclusion of his second term last year could further pose a challenge to Democrats' hopes of maintaining control of the Senate.

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