Former Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn talks about his congressional campaign, which amassed over $2.7 million in donations in just 3 weeks

Harry Dunn and Joe Biden
President Joe Biden and then-Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn share a laugh.Drew Angerer/Getty Images
  • Former Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn defended legislators at the Capitol on January 6, 2021.

  • He's now running against more than 20 Democrats to fill an outgoing representative's seat.

  • He amassed over $2.75 million in the first few weeks of his campaign.

Former Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn spent decades protecting legislators on Capitol Hill, where he quite literally bloodied his knuckles against a pro-Trump mob on January 6, 2021.

But more than three years later, as former President Donald Trump continues to amass support from his party in his bid for reelection, Dunn won't be stationed outside the Capitol if a protest once again turns violent. Instead, he hopes to become a member of Congress himself.

Dunn announced his campaign to replace Democratic Rep. John Sarbanes in Maryland's 3rd congressional District in early January 2024.

In an interview with Business Insider on Tuesday, Dunn said he didn't consult any of his pals in Congress before announcing his run.

"As a member of the Capitol Police, I'd been there 15 years, I'd seen all the work that it entails, and I wanted to make sure that I was ready for it," he said, adding that he's been interested in public office for years after seeing how "passionate" even everyday Americans are about their government.

But since declaring his bid, he said he'd received a slew of advice from friends on Capitol Hill, like remembering to take care of himself mentally and physically.

There are more than 20 candidates in the running to replace Sarbanes in January 2025, none of whom so far have been able to crack more than 9% support in a recent poll. Dunn placed second in the poll with 7% support.

With the addition of the hefty financial support he's received from donors — he gained $2.75 million in donations in the first three weeks of his campaign alone — Dunn's campaign recently released its first commercial. It began canvassing and sending campaign mail last week.

Notably, Trump's name will likely be on the ballot for the first time since the Capitol riots. "There's a clear choice here: We cannot elect Donald Trump going forward," Dunn said.

"We have to elect Joe Biden as the president going forward," he added, "because Donald Trump, we can't take his threats anymore as veiled threats."

Though both likely presidential nominees are of advanced age, voters in recent polls have expressed particular concern with Biden's mental acuity and physical health following a special counsel report that questioned his memory.

"That's a dilemma where we're at right now," Dunn said. "People can worry about his age, but he's been very effective."

Both Maryland's Democratic and Republican primaries are scheduled for May 14.

Correction: March 20, 2024 — An earlier version of this story stated Dunn's campaign was about to begin canvassing and sending out mail. His team said they started the process a week before the story's publication.

Read the original article on Business Insider