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Expert: Malloy's Sandy Hook Reference In Campaign Ad Unnecessary Political Risk

HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP) -- Did Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy take a political gamble by invoking the Sandy Hook tragedy in his latest campaign ad?

Malloy's second television ad was released Monday. It features Nicole Hockley, whose son Dylan was one of 20 children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Hockley credits the Democrat with having "the courage and conviction to stand up and do the right thing."

State Republican Party Chairman Jerry Labriola Jr. accused Malloy of trying to exploit the mass shooting for political gain.

Expert: Malloy Ad's Sandy Hook Mention An Unnecessary Political Risk

Gary Rose, a political professor at Sacred Heart University, told WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau that if he were advising the governor, he would have told him not to run the ad. It was not necessary for Malloy to reiterate his stand for tougher gun laws following the tragedy in Newtown, Rose said.

"His opponents, obviously the Republicans, are going to feel that he is exploiting the tragedy," Rose said. "I don't think he's going to be hurt by the ad so much because public opinion right now in Connecticut is on the side of the governor with respect to that gun bill."

Rose noted that Hockley appears only briefly in the ad to push for tougher legislation.

An adviser to Malloy's campaign said Hockley reached out to the staff, saying she wanted to help his re-election campaign.

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