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December 12, 2011

O’Malley planning more foreign travel

Gov. Martin O’Malley hope to fill up his passport over the next few years with stamps from Brazil and some African nations. The governor mentioned his future plans Monday morning at a media briefing on the India trip he wrapped up last week.

The governor noted that Brazil, with its booming economy would help round out his tour through emerging nations frequently referred to as the “BRIC” countries. (Should his Brazil trip go forward, O’Malley would only be missing Russia.) O’Malley said he’d like to go to Brazil next year.

The governor also said he’d like to visit Africa, noting the number of international relief agencies based in Maryland that do work there. “Not to mention the contributions from that continent,” O’Malley said.

The cost to taxpayers for the six day India trip was roughly $140,000, said Department of Business and Economic Development Secretary Christian Johansson. O’Malley led a delegation of 100 on the trip, which he said helped seal business deals worth $60 million.
In June, O'Malley took nearly 70 business leaders, educators and officials on a trade mission to China, South Korea and Vietnam. The 10-day trip cost taxpayers $164,000. The governor said it netted $85 million in deals.

The governor said that he appreciated traveling in India with Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L Baker III and Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett, and said he’d previously hesitated to invite county leaders on foreign travel.

“We are all familiar with the political liabilities that come from whenever our elected officials are traveling,” said O’Malley. “You assume that, without question, you are going to get the articles that are critical of you traveling when you should be doing other things at home.”
Posted by Annie Linskey at 1:06 PM | | Comments (0)

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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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