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An Endangered Species

That would be Maryland Republicans according to Wryoak.

I don’t know that I would engage in quite so much triumphalism but I believe on the big things that they have it exactly right.

Governor O’Malley, in my view, was a big winner in the special session. He got more than he asked for in terms of taxes. He is able to point at the General Assembly and say “under my plan 83% (or whatever number he was using on that particular day) of Marylanders would have paid less in taxes, I was a tax-cutting machine, the General Assembly changed that and now most of you are paying more.” He’s going to be owed a lot of favors from this session, and if he pays off on what he promised to get taxes and slots, he will get whatever he wants for the remainder of his term.

The Republican caucus was unable to stick together even on minor issues, like the nonessential slots bill, and O’Malley has been able to pick off enough of them with various goodies that he won’t have to worry about a revolt later on. The Republican caucus was punked and they will stay punked.

Wryoak could be right about O’Malley’s assault on Republicans in Maryland. I don’t know why he’d waste the time or energy doing this unless he simply needs amusement but if he is the focusing of a reduced Thornton GCEI on those jurisdictions which elected him – Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties and Baltimore City – while conspicuously punishing jurisdictions that voted against (an outcome of his budget scheme that we’ve previously noted) him certainly plays into that theory.

What can go wrong? The policy team could get a little nuts pushing a social agenda (making it harder for rural swing voters to care about a few extra tax bucks back) or the state economy could spectacularly tank – that would be our present bet – but short of these developments, in three years we could be hunting Republicans with dogs.






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