King Nothing

We knew Governor O’Malley’s congressional redistricting effort would be an overtly partisan exercise. However, the token Republican O’Malley appointed to his redistricting advisory committee, former delegate James King, is affront to tokens everywhere.

“It is imperative that the minority party have a voice in this extremely important process.” King told “I look forward to bringing balance to this process.”

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Long time readers remember King was one of the Republican enablers of the slots legislation during the 2007 special session, greasing the skids for O’Malley’s $1.4 billion tax increase.

About 11:15 p.m., O’Malley showed up at Metropolitan, an Annapolis bar, with his chief lobbyists, Joseph Bryce and Sean Malone. He began sidling up to legislators, mostly Montgomery County Democrats but also Del. James King, an Anne Arundel Republican, who broke party lines the next day to vote for the referendum. O’Malley had a Heineken in hand but appeared too intent on conversation to drink it.

King lost a Senate primary race to Ed Reilly in 2010. In February King took a job in the O’Malley administration as a part-time, contractual small business advisor to the Department of Business and Economic Development, a fact the O’Malley administration omitted in it’s official announcement, and left unremarked by both the Baltimore Sun and Washington Post.

Having a King as voice for small business in the O’Malley administration may be a good thing, but then again his enabling of the largest tax increase in state history hasn’t done much good for Maryland’s small businesses.

It is one thing have a single Republican on a stacked redistricting committee in deeply Democratic Maryland. We expect that. However, it’s something else entirely when that lone Republican not only works for O’Malley but, has a history of rolling over for the Governor like trained poodle. Given his record, we have no faith James King will be an effective Republican voice, or provide any balance to the redistricting process whatsoever.

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