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November 8, 2011

Md. troops in Iraq tell O'Malley of concern for benefits

Maryland National Guard members stationed in Iraq told Gov. Martin O’Malley on Tuesday that they were concerned about veterans’ retirement benefits in the current climate of fiscal austerity.

Defense is one of several areas that has come under scrutiny as Washington looks to balance its books. President Barack Obama has directed Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to cut $450 billion from the Pentagon budget. The so-called Supercommittee, the panel of lawmakers charged with developing plans to reduce the deficit, could come up with additional reductions. And a failure by its members to reach an agreement would trigger deep cuts automatically.

Members of the Maryland guard’s 29th Combat Aviation Brigade spoke with O’Malley from Taji, Iraq, via Skype. When O’Malley asked if there was anything he could do for them, Col. David W. Carey spoke of the retirement benefits.

“Some of what’s being talked about as we pare down the budget … is constantly there is an article in there about adjusting their retirement system,” said Carey, commander of the brigade, which is based at the Edgewood Area of Aberdeeen Proving Ground.

He pointed to the soldiers who joined him on the call: Master Sgt. Iris Cruz of Harford County, in the service for 21 years; Chief Warrant Officer Gregory R. Turner of Elkton, in for 12 years; and Specialist Delvan Namar Anderson of Edgewood, in for three. He said they and others signed on with an understanding of the benefits they would receive after completing their service.

“It’s my hope that as a government we don’t go down and modify that retirement system midstream,” he said.

O’Malley told Carey he shared his concern.

“My sense is in the general public that people are starting to ask deeper and better questions in the face of this sort of strange, cut, cut, cut, cut, slash-and-burn, slash-and-burn sort of approach to the things that we can only do together, like supporting our armed forces,” he said. “And so I’d like to believe that as the public is starting to ask deeper questions, so, too, will their representatives.”

O’Malley has no formal role in federal spending, but said he had met “a few times” with members of the Supercommittee.

“With other governors, we’ve tried to make very clear that doing a bad deal, with huge cuts to priorities like the one you underscored for veterans retirement benefits and our armed forces, doing a bad deal would be worse than not doing any deal at all. …

Continue reading "Md. troops in Iraq tell O'Malley of concern for benefits" »

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 2:20 PM | | Comments (1)
        

September 15, 2011

O'Malley urges Congress to pass Obama jobs bill

Sun colleague Joe Burris reports:

Gov. Martin O’Malley said Thursday that President Barack Obama’s new American Jobs Act would create about 19,000 jobs in the state’s infrastructure, schools and services sectors and could help generate future employment opportunities for 100,000 Marylanders by providing skills training.

O’Malley joined Delaware Gov. Jack Markell and Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter in a conference call on Thursday to discuss the impact of the proposed jobs act.

Obama has proposed a package of tax cuts aimed at small businesses and the middle class, spending on infrastructure and an extension of employment insurance.

The White House said the American Jobs Act would provide Maryland with an immediate investment of at least $625.5 million for highway and transit modernization projects that would fund about 8,000 jobs.

The plan would include $541.7 million for about 6,000 jobs for teachers, firefighters and law enforcement officers and $315 million in school construction and upgrades. The White House sad that work would generate more than 4,000 jobs.

“We need to pass this now. A four-corners defense is not an option when so many people are without jobs in our country today,” O’Malley said.

Continue reading "O'Malley urges Congress to pass Obama jobs bill" »

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 6:18 PM | | Comments (7)
        

August 23, 2011

O'Malley: 'We will continue to monitor the situation'

Gov. Martin O’Malley released a statement on the earthquake Tuesday:

“The earthquake this afternoon was an extremely unusual occurrence for us here on the East Coast. I have been briefed by members of my cabinet and public safety officials on the status of state facilities and operations. Presently, there are no reports of significant damage or incidents and we will continue to monitor the situation closely, particularly over the next 24 to 48 hours. We will be paying close attention to our utilities for problems with water mains or gas lines that may not be present immediately following an earthquake.

“Of course, when the earthquake first hit, our thoughts immediately turned to the safety of our loved ones. I encourage everyone to check on their family members, friends and neighbors; particularly the elderly to make sure everyone is safe.”

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 4:58 PM | | Comments (0)
        

August 18, 2011

O'Malley appeals to fellow Democrats on Somalia

Gov. Martin O'Malley on Thursday reached out to fellow Democrats and asked for help in raising money for relief efforts in Somalia, where drought and famine have claimed tens of thousands of lives in recent months. Recent estimates by the federal government suggest that 29,000 children have died.

"The Somali drought and famine have forced mothers with scarce resources to choose which child will live, fathers to leave their sick children to die on the streets and babies to enter a world with no hope for survival," the governor wrote in an email sent to a list maintained by the Maryland Democratic Party.

In the letter, O'Malley suggests that people donate through the U.S. Agency for International Development. He references an op-ed in USA Today written by Jill Biden, Vice President Joe Biden's wife, and former Republican Sen. Bill Frist. The two recently traveled to a Kenyan refugee camp inhabited by hundreds of thousands of Somalian refugees.

Posted by Andy Rosen at 4:47 PM | | Comments (8)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

August 8, 2011

O'Brien urged O'Malley against backing gay marriage

In the days before Gov. Martin O’Malley announced his support for same-sex marriage, Archbishop Edwin F. O’Brien privately urged him against “promoting a goal that so deeply conflicts with your faith.”

“Preserving the central role of the natural family unit has always been — and should continue to be — the reason why our government recognizes marriage as existing between one man and one woman,” the archbishop wrote to the governor in a letter dated July 20.

Two days later, O’Malley said he would introduce legislation next year to allow gay couples to marry.

“As a free and diverse people of many faiths, we choose to be governed under the law by certain fundamental principles or beliefs, among them ‘equal protection of the law’ for every individual and the ‘free exercise’ of religion without government intervention,” O’Malley said. “Other states have found a way to protect both these rights. So should Maryland.”

A same-sex marriage bill cleared the state Senate this year, but it was pulled from the House floor after vote-counters determined they were a few delegates shy of a majority. With O’Malley’s active support, backers are hopeful of success next year.

O’Malley, who is Catholic, opposed same-sex marriage when he first ran for governor in 2006. He said at the time that he had been “raised to believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.”

His announcement last month came weeks after New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation that made New York the sixth state to allow gay couples to marry — and enjoyed a boost in his national profile.

“I am well aware that the recent events in New York have intensified pressure on you to lend your active support to legislation to redefine marriage,” O’Brien wrote, in a letter released Monday by the governor’s office.

Continue reading "O'Brien urged O'Malley against backing gay marriage" »

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 8:46 PM | | Comments (54)
        

June 3, 2011

Lobbyist joining O'Malley on Asia trade mission

Baltimore Sun colleagues Hanah Cho and Jean Marbella report:

The delegation accompanying Gov. Martin O’Malley on his Asian trade mission includes at least one lobbyist. And the e-mail from her Annapolis firm this week was almost boastful.

“As far as we know, Hannah is the only registered lobbyist on the trip and we are extraordinary pleased that she has a chance to represent our client and our firm,” the chief operating officer of the government relations division at Alexander & Cleaver wrote to clients.

“If you have any important messages that you want her to deliver to the Governor, please contact her before Sunday!”

On Friday, ethics advocates said the participation of a lobbyist in the governor’s 10-day trip to China, Korea and Vietnam raises questions, rival lobbyists said it was unusual, and a spokesman for O’Malley called the e-mail Thursday by Robin F. Shaivitz “unfortunate.”

Lobbyist Hannah Powers, who plans to join the delegation for the Korean leg of the trip next week, said there was nothing improper about her participation. She said she will be traveling with client Jim Oberhaus of JX3 Energy, a Cumberland firm looking to expand its relationship with a Korean steel maker. She said her firm would pay her expenses.

“I’m strictly going for JX3 Energy and we’re looking for improving economic development in Western Maryland through our partnership with POSCO,” Powers said. “To me, it makes perfect sense.”

Shaivitz, meanwhile, called her e-mail “innocuous.” She said she sends a weekly message to clients.

“If you have good will, pass it along – that was what I meant by it,” she told a Baltimore Sun reporter. “You’re reading a lot more into it than I gave thought to it.”

Continue reading "Lobbyist joining O'Malley on Asia trade mission" »

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 8:09 PM | | Comments (0)
        

May 17, 2011

Governor pledges action after beating of transgender woman

Gov. Martin O'Malley today commended the Baltimore County state's attorney for bringing a hate crime charge in the beating of a transgender woman at a McDonald's -- and said he would fight for stronger antidiscrimination laws next year.

Yesterday, State's Attorney Scott Shellenberger announced that a grand jury had indicted 18-year-old Teonna Brown on a hate crime charge, adding to an assault charge she had already faced.

Brown, whose attorney said she acted in self defense, is accused of beating Chrissy Lee Polis outside a bathroom at a McDonald's in Rosedale. A 15-year-old girl is charged as a juvenile. A restaurant employee recorded the attack on his cell phone camera, and it went viral on the Internet.

“As some have noted, out of this awful beating has come a moment to foster a deeper understanding and respect for the dignity of all persons," O'Malley said in a statement. "We should not allow the moment to pass without greater action."

The Democratic governor pledged to work with the General Assembly next year to "provide even greater protections for transgendered people."

Continue reading "Governor pledges action after beating of transgender woman" »

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 1:00 PM | | Comments (24)
Categories: Crime & Justice, Martin O'Malley
        

May 9, 2011

O'Malley brother-in-law to fight for Constellation sale

Max Curran, a seasoned utilities attorney and former Maryland Public Service Commission member, will lead the legal fight for state approval of the sale of Constellation Energy and BGE, The Sun's Jay Hancock reports.

Curran will help shepherd the purchase of the local companies to Chicago-based Exelon through the Public Service Commission. Hancock notes Curran's tie to O'Malley could come in handy:

"The hookup isn't a conflict of interest for Gov. Martin O'Malley or anybody else under the state's ethics law. But it at least bears the appearance of another attempt by Constellation boss Mayo A. Shattuck III to butter up the governor."

When the deal was announced two weeks ago, Hancock notes, "almost the first thing stock analysts wanted to know was how in the world the deal could get done, given Constellation's O'Malley troubles."

More from Hancock:

"Through a spokeswoman, Curran declined to comment, saying he didn't want to speak publicly about a pending case. Constellation declined to answer my question about whether Curran's ties to O'Malley were a factor in the decision to hire him.

Robert A. Hahn, executive director of the State Ethics Commission, would not address Curran's Constellation gig specifically. However, he said, Maryland law bars public officials from participating in matters involving somebody who employs a spouse, child, parent or sibling. Nothing about siblings-in-law.

O'Malley spokesman Rick Abbruzzese said Curran's involvement would have no bearing on the governor's approach to the Constellation-Exelon combo."

Continue reading "O'Malley brother-in-law to fight for Constellation sale" »

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 12:11 PM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

April 7, 2011

O'Malley needles NJ's Christie on his home turf

Gov. Martin O'Malley's criticism of Gov. Chris Christie hit closer to home last night, as the Maryland governor spoke at the New Jersey Democrats' annual fundraising dinner.

"Balancing budgets is important, but what some Republican governors seem to forget is that creating jobs is also important," O'Malley said, according to his prepared remarks. Later, he added, "Instead of standing up for the middle class, we get stand-up comedy routines from colorful characters like your governor."

Christie's New Jersey Republicans fired back at O'Malley. "All you'll hear tonight is the sound of Gov. O'Malley's broken campaign promises as taxes/fees go up for Marylanders," the party wrote on its Twitter account. They flagged the Tweet with #weakkneedGov.

O'Malley made the trip up Interstate 95 as chairman of the Democratic Governors Association. His appearance at the New Jersey Jefferson Jackson Day dinner in New Brunswick was a signal that Christie will be a featured element in the state's legislative races this year, the Philadelphia Inquirer wrote.

Continue reading "O'Malley needles NJ's Christie on his home turf" »

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 9:20 AM | | Comments (43)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

April 6, 2011

House to invest less in Invest Maryland

Maryland would invest less in Invest Maryland under a revised plan moving through the House of Delegates. The House this morning began debating Gov. Martin O'Malley's proposal to leverage future tax dollars to invest in local start-up companies.

But the House Ways and Means Committee reduced the overall size of the program from $100 million to $75 million and downshifted the state's direct involvement. Under the new plan, the Department of Business and Economic Development would control one-third -- down from half -- of the investment money. The rest would go to private venture firms.

Delegates are to resume debate, and consider additional amendments, tomorrow morning. The Senate is also working its way through the bill with an eye toward changes. The two chambers would need to reconcile their plans before session ends Monday night.

O'Malley, a Democrat, pitched Invest Maryland as a way to spur jobs, innovation and economic growth, Sun technology reporter Gus Sentementes wrote earlier this year.

Continue reading "House to invest less in Invest Maryland" »

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 12:27 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: 2011 legislative session, Martin O'Malley
        

March 9, 2011

O'Malley testifies on farm estate tax proposal

Gov. Martin O'Malley on Wednesday urged legislative support for a plan to reduce the tax burden on Marylanders who inherit family farms, testifying before the Senate committee weighing the bill.

"Throughout our state's history, our family farmers have always been an important part of what makes Maryland strong," O'Malley told the Senate's Budget and Taxation Committee, according to prepared remarks. "With this legislation we can help make sure they will continue to make our state stronger in the future."

The Democratic governor has unexpectedly become an advocate for the farm estate tax bill -- a plan being pushed by two freshmen Frederick County lawmakers, Democratic Sen. Ronald Young and Del. Kathy Afzali.

Afzalia said she won the governor over by cornering him at a recent dinner for farmers, pulling the proposal from her purse and calling it "the greenest bill in the state legislature." O'Malley had planned to testify at the House committee hearing last week, but his aides said scheduling conflicts kept him away.

Continue reading "O'Malley testifies on farm estate tax proposal" »

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 6:14 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: 2011 legislative session, Martin O'Malley
        

February 18, 2011

O'Malley makes pitch for federal $$$ spurned by Fla.

Sun transportation writer Michael Dresser has a post on his Getting There blog about an unusual request by Gov. Martin O'Malley:

Seeking to capitalize on Florida Gov. Rick Scott's decision to turn down $2.4 billion in federal stimulus funds for a high-speed rail line between Tampa and Orlando, Gov. Martin O'Malley has asked Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to shift much of the money to projects in Maryland and other places along Amtrak's Northeast Corridor.

In a letter dated today, O'Malley urged LaHood to move much of that money to projects such as the estimated $1 billion construction of a new tunnel to replace the century-old B&P Tunnel just south of Penn Station. That tunnel is regarded as a critical bottleneck slowing trains on the Northeast Corridor.

O'Malley also outlined several other Maryland projects that could benefit from an infusion of a transfer of the money spurned this week by Florida's new Republican governor, who expressed objections to government spending on a project the previous administration had eagerly sought.

Read more on Mike's Getting There blog.

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 1:04 PM | | Comments (0)
        

February 3, 2011

O'Malley highlights education, innovation

Gov. Martin O'Malley said Maryland's strides in public education provide the foundation for innovation that will help spur economic recovery, a key point in his State of the State address today in Annapolis.

"The state of our state is stronger than it was two years ago, stronger than it was even a year ago," he said. "But better isn't good enough."

Delivered to the 188 members of the General Assembly and an audience packed with state dignitaries, the speech was sprinkled with quotes from Presidents Obama, Lincoln and Clinton. The Democratic governor repeatedly called President Barack Obama's decisions "courageous" and borrowed his State of the Union theme: "win the future."

Maryland faces a deficit of as much as $1.6 billion, but O'Malley said the economy is showing signs of improvement, pointing to a decrease in home foreclosures and new public-private partnerships such as the Port of Baltimore. He lauded the K-12 school system for its three years at the top of Education Week's list of best districts.

"Innovation is key," he said. "And the foundation of innovation is education."

The governor’s address drew sparse applause, save for one area: holding utility companies accountable. The audience cheered repeatedly as O’Malley announced legislation that would set reliability standards for customers — a hot topic after recent winter storms left thousands of customers in the dark.

"Moms and dads deserve better than to sit for days in freezing homes because the power hasn’t been restored," he said. "Family-owned businesses should not be forced to lose productivity and income because big utilities have failed them."

Republicans said O'Malley's speech was out of sync with his policy choices.

"The governor always gives a great outline of things, but now the reality sets in," said Sen. E.J. Pipkin of the Eastern Shore, the Senate minority whip. He said the governor should be looking for additional education savings and more dramatic pension reform if he truly wants to solve the state's structural deficit.  

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Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 4:00 PM | | Comments (7)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

O'Malley to address state lawmakers today

Gov. Martin O'Malley will speak to Maryland's 188 lawmakers and an audience of state dignitaries and citizens at noon today, delivering his fifth State of the State address.

O'Malley, a Democrat elected to his second term in November, spoke at his inaugural event about two weeks ago, and his remarks today are expected to hit many familiar themes, aides say. He called for unity in financially difficult times that have left the state with billion-dollar deficits at the beginning of each year. Campaign slogans "moving Maryland forward" and "one Maryland" also may return today.

The governor will no doubt highlight his legislative priorities, including pension reform, preparations for federal health care reform and Invest Maryland. But he may also set goals for his entire second term.

Del. Jeannie Haddway-Riccio, an Eastern Shore Republican in her first year as House minority whip, will provide the GOP response. Haddaway-Riccio said she would discuss points of agreement between the governor and the minority party but will also note many contrasts in policy choices.

Check The Sun's home page for links to video feeds of both speeches as they are aired. Haddaway-Riccio's is being taped earlier and will air on Maryland Public Televsion and other stations after O'Malley's address.

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Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 6:00 AM | | Comments (8)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

Sources: O'Malley to nominate brother for state chair

Annie Linskey reports:

Gov. Martin O’Malley will nominate his younger brother and long-time political advisor Peter O’Malley to lead Maryland’s Democratic Party, according to several top Democrats.

The governor will forward his pick for chairman at a meeting set for March, the sources said, and state Democratic officials will have to vote to approve the nomination. In Maryland, the governor’s nomination has typically been selected as the leader of his party.

A top Democrat said the governor expects Peter O’Malley to build the party as it “prepares for the successful re-elections” of Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin and President Barack Obama in 2012. The source not authorized to speak about the nomination.

Gov. O’Malley would not comment on the nomination last night.

“We’re working on the State of the State,” he said, referring to the address he is set to deliver to the Maryland General Assembly Thursday. Rick Abbruzzese, a spokesman, also would not confirm the move. Peter O’Malley could not be immediately reached.

Continue reading "Sources: O'Malley to nominate brother for state chair" »

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 2:00 AM | | Comments (4)
        

February 2, 2011

State workers approve contract

The largest state employees union have ratified a three-year contract, state and union officials said Wednesday, agreeing to a plan that includes small raises if state revenues begin to climb.

Other details of the deal negotiated between Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees include a $750 bonus on July 1, the first day of the 2012 fiscal year, and — in a reprieve after three years of unpaid days off — no furloughs at any time in the contract period.

Employees also will receive five extra paid days off when the state government shuts down to save money.

But employees would pay more for prescription drugs. And, as Republican lawmakers noted, all state workers — even those who do not wish to be represented by the union — now have to pay service fees.

That change comes after a 2009 bill signed by O’Malley. Sen. Christopher B. Shank, a Washington County Republican, noted in a recent press release that the service fee can amount to as much as $400 per year for some workers.

Continue reading "State workers approve contract" »

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 7:32 PM | | Comments (29)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

January 20, 2011

At inaugural ball, O'Malley marches

Gov. Martin O'Malley's inaugural ball last night at the 5th Regiment Armory in Baltimore drew about 2,500 supporters, including at least one in denim -- a departure from his first, a black-tie affair attended by more than 8,000.

The event capped a day of ceremony, with O'Malley's swearing-in and address in Annapolis.

The Saw Doctors, an Irish rock band, gave a repeat performance at the ball. And the usual suspects -- cabinet secretaries, county executives, lawmakers and administration and campaign staples -- made appearances.

In a heavily staged exchange, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake implored O'Malley to play a set with his band, O'Malley's March. The governor faux hemmed and hawed and then, no surprise, rolled up his sleeves and grabbed a guitar. (First lady Katie O'Malley told the crowd, "He's such a showboat.") His first song: Johnny Cash's "I Walk the Line."

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Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 8:07 AM | | Comments (3)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

January 19, 2011

O'Malley takes oath, delivers inaugural remarks

Gov. Martin Joseph O’Malley touched on themes of unity and progress in his inaugural address, delivered this afternoon on the steps of the State House shortly after he was sworn in for a second term.

The governor used the word “forward” a dozen times to express his hope that over the next four years the state will see businesses expand, education increase, crime go down, and the environment improve.

He urged tolerance and respect.

“We need each other just as much as the next generation needs us,” O’Malley said. “We cannot allow our individual sense of entitlement to tear apart our shared sense of community.”

He highlighted what he saw as his greatest achievements from the first term, including investments in bio-tech, renewable energy, lower homicide rates and decreased traffic deaths, and protecting the Chesapeake Bay.

Continue reading "O'Malley takes oath, delivers inaugural remarks" »

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 1:40 PM | | Comments (5)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

January 18, 2011

O'Malley, Sebelius warn of repeal consequences

Obama officials say as many as 2.5 million Marylanders could lose coverage if federal health care reform is repealed, The Sun's Kelly Brewington is reporting on the Picture of Health blog.

In a conference call today, U.S. health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Gov. Martin O'Malley talked to reporters about the consequences of repealing President Barack Obama's health care reform act.

O'Malley said without reform health care costs would continue to rise. Those soaring costs have been a huge drain on businesses, stifling the economy, he said. 

"There is no way our business can expand if we are watching health care costs rise by 50 percent and wages stay stagnant," he said.

O'Malley said Maryland is looking forward to implementing the health care law. In fact, just last week, a state panel gave O'Malley a 16-point plan with recommendations on how to roll out health reform in the state.

"We firmly believe in Maryland that this is important, not only to create more affordable more comprehensive health care for all, but we see this as an opportunity to make our economy more competitive," O'Malley said.

Hop over to Picture of Health to read the full entry.

Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 4:45 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

December 30, 2010

Vozzella details O'Malley inaugural events

From The Sun's Laura Vozzella:

Gov. Martin O'Malley will kick off his second term in somewhat muted style, judging by inaugural ball plans I came across online. Details are yet to be formally announced and invites aren't going out until next week. But http://www.mdinaugural.com/ offers a sneak peek at the particulars.

The festivities begin on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, two days before the Jan. 19 swearing-in, with service projects ranging from construction work at a Baltimore elementary school to a stream cleanup in Montgomery County.

The next day, O'Malley and Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown will take part in what is billed as a "youth inaugural event" at the University of Maryland, College Park. High school students from across the state will meet with them to discuss challenges and opportunities for their future.

And finally, on Jan. 19, after the formal swearing-in in Annapolis, there will be a ball in Baltimore. Four years ago, O'Malley's inaugural ball drew more than 8,000 to the Baltimore Convention Center. This time around, about 3,000 are expected to attend. The venue, the 5th Regiment Armory in Baltimore, will be smaller, too.

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Posted by Julie Bykowicz at 3:24 PM | | Comments (5)
Categories: Martin O'Malley
        

December 1, 2010

O'Malley to lead Democratic governors

North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue spilled the news: as expected, Martin O'Malley will was picked today to be the next chairman of the Democratic Governors Association.

(While the organization already has announced O'Malley's election in a press release, and Perdue described him in her speech as the chairman, the actual vote is happening right now.)

** UPDATE: O'Malley has now, officially, been selected chair via a unanimous vote, says spokesman Rick Abbruzzese. **

O'Malley is currently emceeing an association lunch at the St. Regis Washington hotel. He spoke briefly, giving a somewhat nationalized version of his stump speech.

As DGA chairman, O'Malley now has the opportunity to expand his Rolodex with Democratic donors from other states, deepen relationships with a network of emerging Democratic leaders and recruit new faces to the party.

The position proved a stepping-stone for former President Bill Clinton, current Health Secretary Kathleen Sibelius and current Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, among others.

"It is an important leadership position," Nathan Gonzales, the political editor of the Rothenberg Political Report, said Tuesday, before the vote. "If it is O'Malley, it will put him on a larger stage than just being the governor of Maryland."

Republican Gov. Haley Barbour of Mississippi showed the way during the 2010 election campaign, when he made the Republican Governors Association a major fundraising resource for GOP candidates — and kept his own name in the national media.

But the job does not necessarily translate into national stardom.

Continue reading "O'Malley to lead Democratic governors" »

Posted by Annie Linskey at 12:49 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Martin O'Malley, People
        
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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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