to the DNC and Governor O’Malley, Meet all your Campaign Donors from Lobbyists and Lawyers and Special Interest Groups, Pot, Meet Kettle, Governor

Subject: to the DNC and Governor O’Malley, Meet all your Campaign Donors from Lobbyists and Lawyers and Special Interest Groups, Pot, Meet Kettle, Governor

To: rabbruzzese, sadamec, menright, Joe Bryce <jbryce>, governor, "<ehrlichs>" <ehrlichs>, "robert.ehrlich" <Robert.Ehrlich>, gregmassoni, "greg.massoni" <Greg.Massoni>, ccavey, abarth

Cc: c4, bruce, theednorrisshow, sean, ecunningham <ecunningham>, erinj, newsroom, news, Ann Miller <allsixofus>, Michael Swartz <ttownjotes>, douggill

Funny how the DNC and Governor O’Malley forget to mention all his tie in’s to Lobbyist, Special Interest Groups and Corporations, say it isn’t so, Peter Angelos, well we understand that one. DNC, Meet Kettle and maybe research before you forget to look in your own house. Yes, all of the State House is reading. For every barb the DNC and Governor’s Campaign throws out there against the Former Governor, I will make sure that I counter that with facts. I will inform the voters with all other’s who will see this race fair and accurate and not misleading. In turn, those readers spread the facts even further through out the state.

While democrats tie Ehrlich to lobbyists, dozens contribute to the O’Malley campaign

In Maryland, the mainstream media is familiar with just three stories: republicans are either evil or irrelevant; Governor Martin O’Malley is above being fact-checked (how many stories have you read about O’Malley’s WTOP radio show?); and former Governor Bob Ehrlich stands with special interests and lobbyists.

All three talking points were presented en masse this past weekend as the Maryland Democratic Party celebrated the appearance of republican gubernatorial candidate Robert Ehrlich in a documentary film about Jack Abramoff, the disgraced lobbyist who is now serving four years in a federal prison.

“Casino Jack and the United States of Money” features Maryland’s former governor – in a snapshot – posing with the now-convicted felon, and the photo provided Governor O’Malley’s minions with just enough ‘tee-hees’ to bring on a serious case of schoolgirl giddiness.

“The connection between Ehrlich and Abramoff, now serving a 4-year prison sentence, runs deep,” Maryland Democratic Party Executive Director Travis Tazelaar posted on The Online State website.

“Ehrlich faced criticism while governor for hosting Abramoff at a Hanukkah party at the State House, and accepting $16,000 in campaign contributions from the disgraced lobbyist. So, it isn’t a surprise that Ehrlich turned up in the movie’s trailer, grinning ear to ear with Abramoff.”

What Mr. Talezaar, naturally, failed to mention was that Ehrlich returned the Abramoff contribution, as did Senator Barbara Mikulski and Representative Steny Hoyer – two Maryland democrats who also benefited from the Abramoff pipeline.

“Casino Jack and Lobbyist Bob,” Talezaar concludes, “the cell-block buster of the year.”

In today’s political climate, lobbyists – and those deemed as tools of lobbyists – fall somewhere between ambulance chasers and child molesters on the popularity scale.

Unless you happen to be one of the 20 lobbyists employed by the current occupant of the White House, who once pledged that lobbyists wouldn’t have jobs in his White House.

But as Marylanders are well aware, rampant political hypocrisy is not limited to Washington, and can be found in full flourish in Annapolis.

For all the rock throwing regarding Ehrlich’s connection to lobbyists and lobbying law firms – and false claims that Ehrlich is a lobbyist – one would expect Governor O’Malley’s glass house to be free of the slick agenda-selling salesmen who corrupt our political process.

Instead, the Follow the Money website lists dozens of lawyers and lobbyist firms that have contributed – in amounts ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 – to the governor’s reelection campaign.

Nestled in between a $5,000 donation from Orioles’ owner Peter Angelos and a $1,000 contribution from the Greenbelt law offices of W. Scott Sonntag are tens of thousands of dollars in contributions from out of state firms.

Helping fill Governor O’Malley’s campaign coffers is a stream of cash from lobbying firms in Los Angeles (Manatt, Phelps & Phillips), New Jersey (Tonio Burgos & Associates), Philadelphia (Cozen O’Connor), Pittsburgh (Reed Smith) and D.C. (DLA Piper).

Ex-Governor Pot, meet current Governor Kettle.

In the special interest arena – where O’Malley has consistently slammed Ehrlich – the current governor’s reelection effort is being bankrolled, in part, by public sector unions (AFSCME, Maryland State Teachers Union), electric utilities and energy providers (Allegheny Energy of Pennsylvania, World Energy Solutions of Massachusetts), and health care and health product companies (Genesis Healthcare Corp, CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield).

Following a 2010 General Assembly Session where the few accomplishments made were done so on behalf of trial lawyers, automobile insurers, teachers unions and environmental lobbies, holding up a republican gubernatorial candidate as the poster boy for bad behavior is as laughable as it is dishonest.

And let’s not forget consumer energy bills that remain higher than ever in spite of candidate O’Malley’s 2006 campaign pledge to “roll back the rate increases.”

So while democrats in Maryland would have you believe that Bob Ehrlich has a starring role in “Casino Jack”, they somehow overlook their complicity in selling our state (and its policies and practices) to the highest bidder.

If it weren’t for double standards, Maryland’s politicians would have no standards at all.


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