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June 11, 2010

Ehrlich teases Steele, no word on successor

There was much buzz at last night's Maryland Republican Party dinner about who former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. might choose as a running mate in his bid to reclaim the office.

But on this night, he buddied up to his former lieutenant governor, chatting with Michael S. Steele, who has had a rocky tenure as head of the Republican National Committee, paying him respect in front of a crowd of about 700 and teasing him about his sports inabilities. ("I'm finesse. He's just football," Steele said of the jock-gap between him and Ehrlich.)

Check out our print story on the dinner.

Before the dinner at BWI Marriott, Ehrlich spoke briefly with reporters and declined to answer questions about his choice for lieutenant governor, though he said the vetting process has begun. He said there are "more than a few" candidates on the list.

Later, as he introduced featured speaker Mitt Romney, Ehrlich joked about the running mate selection process, saying "applications are available in the lobby on the way out."

Political insiders love to make a game of figuring out who might be on Ehrlich's short list. Frequently mentioned names include Mary Kane, Ehrlich's former secretary of state and a highly visible presence at many recent Ehrlich events, and Alison Asti, former head of the Maryland Stadium Authority.

Prominent Baltimore neurosurgeon Dr. Benjamin Carson's name has been bandied about recently. Carson was on the lips of several donors at the Republican dinner. The choice would add considerable wattage to an Ehrlich ticket (Cuba Gooding Jr. played Carson in a television movie!), but it appears to be a no-go.

Through a spokeswoman at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Carson said he is remaining a surgeon and has "no plans" to enter politics. It wasn't clear whether he'd been approached by Ehrlich.

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 10:09 AM | | Comments (4)
Categories: Candidate Watch 2010, Michael Steele


So uh what exactly does a Lieutenant Governor actually do?

So he is not a candidate but is talking about a running mate for Lt. Gov? I think I will announce my candidacy and start raising money, not file and keep the money raised.

of course Bobby buddied up to Steele he needs RNC $$ to run for Governor.

Asti, Jacobs, or maybe some unknown quantity make sense. I don't think Mary Kane will be his LG choice. He needs someone who isn't just picked for the sake of being something--race/gender/etc.

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About the bloggers
Annie Linskey covers state politics and government for The Baltimore Sun. Previously, as a City Hall reporter, she wrote about the corruption trial of Mayor Sheila Dixon and kept a close eye on city spending. Originally from Connecticut, Annie has also lived in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where she reported on war crimes tribunals and landmines. She lives in Canton.

John Fritze has covered politics and government at the local, state and federal levels for more than a decade and is now The Baltimore Sun’s Washington correspondent. He previously wrote about Congress for USA TODAY, where he led coverage of the health care overhaul debate and the 2010 election. A native of Albany, N.Y., he currently lives in Montgomery County.

Julie Scharper covers City Hall and Baltimore politics. A native of Baltimore County, she graduated from The Johns Hopkins University in 2001 and spent two years teaching in Honduras before joining The Baltimore Sun. She has followed the Amish community of Nickel Mines, Pa., in the year after a schoolhouse massacre, reported on courts and crime in Anne Arundel County, and chronicled the unique personalities and places of Baltimore City and its surrounding counties.
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