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Her Honor, the First Lady


Maryland's soon-to-be first lady, Catherine Curran O'Malley, is sticking with her plan to stay on the bench once her husband is sworn in as governor.

O'Malley, a district court judge in Baltimore, spoke publicly about her intentions during the summer, as her husband, Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley (D) was campaigning to unseat Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R).

But Katie O'Malley's desire to keep her job has been complicated by a residency requirement and other family considerations regarding an anticipated move to Annapolis. The O'Malleys have four children, including two daughters in high school.

On Friday, a lawyer for the governor-elect wrote to Ben C. Clyburn, the chief judge for the District Court of Maryland, citing case law that suggests a temporary move to Annapolis would not preclude Katie O'Malley from maintaining her "domicile" in Baltimore, provided she intends to return there at the end of her husband's term.

"Judge O'Malley's intent to maintain her domicile in Baltimore City is not inconsistent with the expectation that she will spend substantial amounts of her non-work time in Annapolis, including living in the Governor's Mansion, with her husband and children," wrote Ralph S. Tyler, a lawyer for O'Malley.

The O'Malley family fully intends to move into Government House sometime after O'Malley's Jan. 17 swearing in but the timing remains unclear, aides said. The family has yet to make a decision as to whether to sell their home in Baltimore.

Katie O'Malley's decision to stay on the bench is hardly without precedent.

Marjorie Rendell, the wife of Pennsylvania Gov. Edward G. Rendell (D), sits on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; Mary Pawlenty, the wife of Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R), is a district judge in the state; and Gary Sebelius, the husband of Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D), who refers to himself as the state's "first dude," is a federal magistrate judge.

Anne Holton, first lady of Virginia, had been a judge, but decided to step down after her husband, Timothy M. Kaine (D), won the governorship.

John Wagner

By Phyllis Jordan  |  January 8, 2007; 10:56 AM ET
Categories:  Governor  
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I liked her until she held that press conference with O'Malley denying that he had cheated on her. It seems like they should have kept their personal life a private matter and not made it into a spectacle.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 12:27 PM | Report abuse

That is the dumbest comment posted here in a while. So, what you are saying is that it would have been better that the O'Malley's not addressed the baseless accusations (found to be leaked by an Ehrlich operative) that Martin was seeing another woman?

You'd probably been claiming they were hiding something and that they are obviously guilty. How does someone win in your no-win world?

Posted by: not MD4DEMS | January 8, 2007 12:45 PM | Report abuse

The comments made by Ehrlich's operative on the website hardly reached the same number of people that the O'Malley's tried to reach by holding a public press conference broadcast around the nation. It just seems a strange way to behave, namely for the O'Malley's to give more publicity to the rumors -- whether true or false -- than they would have had if the O'Malley's had just kept quiet and handled it with dignity. Even Clinton didn't go public until he absolutely had to in order to stop impeachment.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 2:45 PM | Report abuse

notMD4Dems, you should get your facts straight, as the above link from WBAL news in Baltimore makes crystal clear, Katie O'Malley publicly discussed the rumors about her husband's infidelity long before "Ehrlich's operative" did.

Quoting from the WBAL article below:

"But new e-mails obtained by the 11 News I-Team reveal the O'Malley camp was concerned about infidelity rumors as far back as March 2000 -- a full two years before Steffen began working in state government.

In a March 10, 2000 article in The Washington Post, Katie responds to a compliment the mayor passed onto the reporter.

She says, "It helps offset the rumors."

The reporter writes, "Rumors? What rumors?"

Katie explains, "That he's running around on me. That he's been running around on me for years."

Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Yup - you confirmed it - the dumbest comment so far this year. Despite your effort to revise history, everyone remembers Joe "Prince of Darkness" Steffen false posts about Martin O'Malley from the front pages of the Sun and Post and just about every other newspaper in the state.

Posted by: not MD4Bush | January 8, 2007 3:25 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Baltimore is a pit and everyone knows it. I bet O'Malley is sure glad he made it out. Doubt he'll run again for Mayor when he's done as Governor.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Wow - all caps must mean you're right.

Posted by: MD4Bush | January 8, 2007 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for finally admitting so MD4BUSH, glad to set you straight.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Here's another gem from the WBAL Baltimore news article, this quote from Max Curran, Katie O'Malley's brother: "Curran: "What's this business about [[Katie O'Malley]] telling reporters that Martin is running around. Part of the deputies' job should be getting Martin home with the kids-I fear the worst."

Posted by: Anonymous | January 8, 2007 5:03 PM | Report abuse

The rumors came from MD4BUSH, an O'Malley operate, and were used to smear the Ehrlich Administration.

Just the tip of the iceberg as far as the political dirt that we'll see over the next 4 years.

Posted by: Rufus | January 9, 2007 9:53 AM | Report abuse

If you go to the Free Repubic website and search by handle, you will see that NCPAC, aka Joe Steffen, was airing the rumor there two-three months before MD4BUSH ever posted. You will also see that MD4BUSH repeated the rumors and others in what, in hindsight, appears an obvious effort to lure NCPAC into divulging his strategy.

Posted by: Phyllis Jordan | January 9, 2007 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Mr. O'Malley is a great judge. Is there any possibility of having her sit in the District Court in Annapolis?

Posted by: Robin Ficker | January 9, 2007 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Mrs. O'Malley is a great judge. Is there any possibility of having her sit in the District Court in Annapolis?

Posted by: Robin Ficker | January 9, 2007 11:32 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: Anonymous | January 9, 2007 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it funny how there are billions and billions of dollars available for this continuing slaughter, while social programs in the US are starved for funding? Schools, healthcare, housing and other vital programs are continually cut back or eliminated because there is "no money" for them. Politicians stand up and blather on about how our society "cannot afford" to provide a social safety net for its citizens, while at the same time a tame Congress votes again and again to feed billions into the war machine and into the pockets of corporate criminals like Halliburton. It's sickening.

In order to finance these wars of aggression and windfalls for arms manufacturers, poor and working class youth are shoved into the meat grinder. Meanwhile, the United States steadily becomes more and more like a third-world country, with the destruction of manufacturing jobs, a bloated oligarchy, thousands of people living on the streets and dying of preventable diseases and the environment being destroyed by the rape of the planet for resources that never make it to the people who are exploited into providing the labor that produces it.

Welcome to the world's biggest banana republic.


San Francisco, California, US

Posted by: che | January 9, 2007 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Che really adds a touch of class to this discussion board with his dead on, analytical posts.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 9, 2007 9:44 PM | Report abuse

It is not Mrs. O'Malley's fault that her husband was elected Governor and is expected to live in Annapolis. There needs to be a little flexibility in the minds of those who run the state judiciary to deal with a unique situation where the spouse of a newly elected Governor is a Judge who is bound by so-called residency requirements. It is not good for our state for the First Lady to have to spend a lot of commuting time. The obvious solution is to let Mrs. O'Malley switch places with a judge who usually sits in Annapolis. There is bound to be a judge who sits in Annapolis and who lives fairly near the Patapsco Court where Mrs. O'Malley usually sits.

Posted by: Robin Ficker | January 10, 2007 9:27 AM | Report abuse

So Phyllis, you're confirming that Steffan was the source of the rumors?

Is this the sort of political character-assasination that we get to look forward to over the next 4 years?

Posted by: Rufus | January 10, 2007 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Steffen has confirmed that the NCPAC postings are his. He has never denied that he posted the comments, rather he has said he was entrapped by MD4BUSH.

And as someone else noted here earlier, the rumors were around before the NCPAC postings.

Posted by: Phyllis Jordan | January 10, 2007 1:43 PM | Report abuse

che has his/her own agenda and doesn't care about the topic of these chats.

Posted by: exit please | January 10, 2007 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Che's off-topic cut-and-pastes are the most laughable part of this blog.

Posted by: Rufus | January 11, 2007 9:04 AM | Report abuse

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