- Doug Gansler, 50, is the Attorney General for Maryland and he is currently running to be the next Democratic governor of the state
- His son Sam and his classmates were having a ‘beach week’ graduation party at a rented home in Delaware in June
- Gansler is pictured in the middle of the party surrounded by teens holding red Solo cups
- He denies responsibility: ‘It could be Kool-aid instead of beer,’ he said
PUBLISHED: 11:10 EST, 25 October 2013 | UPDATED: 11:38 EST, 25 October 2013
The Maryland Attorney General who was pictured at his son’s drink-filled high school graduation party has continued to list off excuses for not shutting down the underage party.
Doug Gansler, who is currently running for governor, said in a press conference that ‘there may have been some college students or others drinking beer. I just don’t know.’
Two pictures of 50-year-old Gansler surrounded by partying teens have emerged, and in one he is holding up his cell phone in the direction of two boys and a girl dancing on a table. It appears like he is holding the phone as if to take a picture, but he denied that claim.
‘I did not take any pictures…My guess is what I’m doing is reading a text,’ he said at a press conference on Thursday.
Caught in the act: Attorney General Doug Gansler is seen taking a picture with his phone in the middle of a party where recent high school graduates are seen holding SOLO cups
Having a look: Gansler, in the white shirt, is seen in the middle of the crowd of teenagers as he looks on while two teens dance graphically on top of a table
‘I should have probably (been) more observant and maybe determined whether or not there was drinking going on,’ he said.
‘I should have assumed there was drinking going on and I got that wrong.’
In a second picture obtained by ABC News, Gansler is seen watching the dancing teens but this time his phone is out of sight.
The issue is particularly problematic for Gansler since he has been an outspoken activist against underage drinking.
His son Sam and a large group of friends were celebrating their high school graduation at a week-long beach house party in nearby Delaware.
Not only was he present at the party but Mr Gansler was one of the parents who chipped in and paid to rent the beach house for the graduating seniors.
In the middle: Gansler faces backlash over the photo because he has been outspoken against underage drinking
The Baltimore Sun obtained a list of rules that the parents gave to the partying teens, saying that there would be no coupling up in the bedrooms and no drinking hard alcohol.
‘Assume for purposes of discussion that there was widespread drinking at this party- how is that relevant to me?’ he said to The Baltimore Sun.
He went on to use the fact that the party- which revelers dubbed ‘eviction party’ because of the intensity of the partying- took place in Delaware rather than their home state of Maryland.
‘The question is, do I have any moral authority over other people’s children at beach week in another state? I say no.’
One of the most incriminating photos was found on Instagram, showing the 50-year-old Gansler in the middle of a crowded room of dancing teens, holding up his cell phone as if to take a picture of two bare-chest boys dancing on either side of a teenage girl in a bikini.
At a press conference held after the photo became public, Gansler continued to toe the line that he did not know if any illegal drinking was taking place.
‘In this case, maybe I should have done something different,’ he said according to The Washington Post.
Campaigning: Attorney General Doug Gansler is hoping to become the next Democratic mayor of Maryland
‘If I had seen anything that was dangerous or risky… I would have done something about it.’
He put up another defense as well, saying that while he did see plenty of teens drinking out of the distinctive red Solo cups- generally associated with beer pong- there was no way of knowing was was inside each cup.
‘It could be Kool-Aid instead of beer,’ Gansler said on Thursday.
He went on to say that it was not his job to stop other people’s children from drinking under the state age of 21.
Family values: The ‘beach week’ party was held for his son Sam (right) and their friends who had just graduated from a private prep school called the Landon School in Baltimore
‘My responsibility is only to my child,’ he said in an interview with The Sun on Tuesday.
‘Everybody has their own moral compass. Mine is to raise my own child.” He said firmly that his son was not drinking.’
The issue is particularly poignant for Gansler as he has appeared in public service announcements calling to end underage drinking.
‘Parents you’re the leading influence on your teens decision not to drink. It’s never too early to talk with your kids about smart ways to say no,’ he says to the camera in one of the videos.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2476974/Maryland-Attorney-General-Doug-Gansler-texting-NOT-taking-photo-dancing-teens.html#ixzz2iktuvOL8 Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook