The Maryland legislative session has officially concluded, and talks of Gov. O’Malley in 2016 have subsequently reached a new high.
On Thursday, Politico became the latest publication to have a long piece celebrating the governor's accomplishments in 2013, and speculating where these liberal victories will situate him for 2016.
Politically, O’Malley’s wager is that whatever reservations Americans may have about the size and cost of government, voters may look admiringly upon a state that uses government to solve problems, and pays for all the government it wants and needs. He’s also put down a major marker within the “second” potential Democratic 2016 field -- those who would scramble for the nomination if Hillary Clinton doesn’t run Vice President Joe Biden cuts a less than imposing figure in 2016.
The sales pitch isn’t precisely that the era of big government is back -- but the era of fetishizing small government, O’Malley says, is over.
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The Washington Post also has a story on O’Malley's burnishing his liberal credentials before a likely 2016 run. (This legislative session alone, O’Malley successfully pushed high-profile legislation to increase gun control regulations, abolish the death penalty, and raise much-needed funds for transportation projects.)
Earlier in the week, the New York Times ran a big O’Malley profile.
And The Daily Beast ran a more offbeat O’Malley 2016 piece, saying that if he runs, the Maryland governor will have to find a way to separate himself from "The Wire"'s Tommy Carcetti, a character in the HBO show loosely based off of him.
IN OTHER NEWS:
* Gov. O'Malley just signed a bill that expands access to an “employees only” bathroom in retail stores for individuals suffering from Crohn’s disease or other medical conditions that require immediate access to a restroom. (Maryland Reporter)
* The number of D.C.-area residents turning to disability benefits is soaring during the weak job market in a region dependent on federal spending. (Washington Examiner)
* Democrat Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe’s role in GreenTech Automotive is being scrutinized. In the past few days, it has been revealed that he quietly resigned as chairman months ago and that the company owed back taxes on land it owns in Mississippi. (Washington Post)
* The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors has identified about $11 million to complete planned improvements to pedestrian and road projects across the county. (McLean Patch)
* After an outcry from many of its municipal members, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments voted Wednesday to drop the group's official support for universal background checks, a ban on military-style assault weapons and limits on high-capacity ammo magazines. (Washington Examiner)
* A mailer informs Republicans that D.C. Council candidate Patrick Mara is one of them. (Washington Post)
* Opponents of a Maryland gun-control measure took the first steps to prepare a petition drive against the O’Malley gun control legislation to give voters a chance to reject it next year. (Associated Press)
* Read a roundup of the public comments on the proposed vending regulations that will decide how mobile and stationary food vendors do their jobs in the District. (Spoiler: The people aren’t happy about the proposed regulations) (Washington Post)
* D.C. Council candidate Paul Zukerberg, who is running a pro-marijuana platform, is sponsoring a pro-pot rally and concert on the National Mall on 4-20. (Washington Post)
* President Barack Obama's budget proposal includes a legislative provision that would give the District of Columbia greater control over its municipal budget. (Associated Press)