Ehrlich running mate: It's Mary Kane
Former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. has selected his onetime cabinet member Mary Kane as a running mate in his bid to reclaim the governor's office from the Democrat who toppled him four years ago, Baltimore Sun reporters Julie Bykowicz and Annie Linskey write.
The Republican Ehrlich announced the news of his lieutenant governor pick late Wednesday to his more than 27,000 Facebook fans.
Kane, 48, a Montgomery County resident who served as Maryland secretary of state for 18 months under Ehrlich, had been widely viewed as the top contender. Her longtime residence could help Ehrlich in an area of the state where he is looking to make gains, and her husband, John Kane, a former state GOP chairman and successful businessman, could give the campaign access to top Republican donors.
The connection to John Kane could come in handy as Ehrlich pushes a theme he has sounded throughout his nearly three-month campaign: that Maryland must become friendlier to businesses. But it also could carry significant baggage: He is being sued federally for fraudulent billing on government contracts.
Ehrlich said he was "delighted that Mary has agreed to join with me on my mission to bring more jobs, lower taxes, and a brighter future to all Marylanders."
"She has a great mix of experience in government and the private sector, and knows the joys and challenges of raising a family in Maryland," the former governor said in a statement. "She will be true partner in government who shares my belief that fixing Maryland's problems requires candor and real solutions, not cynicism and fear."
Ehrlich's campaign described Kane as the daughter of Irish immigrants and the mother of three college-aged children who now assists military veterans, National Guardsmen and Reservists searching for employment upon returning from overseas as director of Special Projects for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
Kane said she was "honored to join Bob Ehrlich's campaign to bring new ideas and proven leadership to state government."
"As the daughter of immigrants, I gained a profound appreciation for what is possible in Maryland: unlimited economic opportunity, safe neighborhoods, and unparalleled quality of life,: she said in a statement. "But achieving these goals requires leadership. If I have the honor of serving as Lt. Governor, I will work tirelessly to ensure those blessings are available to every Maryland family."