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An O'Malley-Ehrlich Rematch?

There have been rumblings that Bob Ehrlich, the only Republican to be elected governor in Maryland in the past four decades, might give it a try again in 2010. That would likely mean taking on the Democrat who ousted him in 2006, Martin O'Malley.

Given the state of the economy -- and the taxes O'Malley raised last year -- some Republicans say Ehrlich could have a reasonable shot.

But a Washington Post poll released today shows O'Malley enjoying a comfortable lead in a hypothetical rematch -- in fact, a significantly larger one than O'Malley won by in 2006.

If the election were held today, the poll asked, for whom would you vote?

A full 57 percent said O'Malley and 36 percent chose Ehrlich -- a 21 point margin. That compares to the November 2006 election results when O'Malley won 53-46, a 7 point margin.

The poll, conducted Oct. 16-20 among a random sample of 1,005 adults, found that 56 percent of voters viewed O'Malley favorably, while 48 percent had a favorable impression of Ehrlich.

Both O'Malley and Ehrlich have seen their favorable numbers drop since October 2006, right before the election.

O'Malley received a favorable rating from 62 percent in 2006, while Ehrlich was viewed favorably by 56 percent. Ehrlich's drop is partly the result of more voters not having an opinion on the subject. That figure has grown from 5 percent in 2006 to 22 percent in 2008.

By Phyllis Jordan  |  October 22, 2008; 9:38 AM ET
Categories:  John Wagner  
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Now, if we could only replace Jack Johnson.

Posted by: PG County | October 22, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Interesting. The CATO Institute just released their state financial report cards for 2008, gave O'Malley an F for fiscal responsibility. He got not only an F, but MD finished dead last in the nation. Congrats.

Posted by: warrior6 | October 22, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Wow, O'Malley would CRUSH Erlich 57% - 36%? I really don't think the MD GOP has anyone else to run...

Bring it on, repubs. Erlich IS the moment except for his job as radio-pundit.

This proves (though only to a certain extent) that the overly vocal MD GOP chorus of anti-O'Malley bloggers does NOT reflect Maryland voters in general. It seems most people are exceedingly glad Erlich got run out of the state house.

Posted by: Donny | October 22, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Wow, not an endorsement for the intelligence of Maryland voters! I see Duncan running in a hard fought Democratic primary. Will MoCo voters support O'Malley? Will be a tough road for Ehrlich unless the anti-GOP climate simmers down ("Ehrlich has voted with Bush 90% of the time!").

Posted by: Island 1 | October 22, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

So Donny, tell me exactly what did Ehrlich do to deserve to get "run out of the state house"? Support slots? Most likely because he had an "R" next to his name, and for no other legitimate reason.

Posted by: Island | October 22, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

The problem, I believe as percieved by voters respectfully, is that Erlich accomplished nothing. Perhaps because he had zero support from the legislature - true - also true because his objectives opposed theirs (the counties elected officials).

Also, there is the perception that Erlich was a Bush Repub. Well, this is ABSOLUTELY TRUE. Erlich was completely "in the tank" for "W".

(1) He got favors from Bush/Cheney including the EPA fast-tracking of the $3,200,000,000 ICC toll road boondoggle. Now, the taxpayers are left paying the bill.

(2) He returned favors to Bush/Cheney like the undercover investigation of non-violent anti-death penalty protestors as terrorists by state police.

This may seem like a one-sided assessment of Erlich, but I am willing to listen to the other side. How does the GOP think Erlich did (accomplishments)?

Posted by: Donny | October 22, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

We are not bringing back Bobby Hair-cut - he is a loser and helped Michael Steele run a dirty(and losing)campaign against Ben Cardin.

Posted by: silver spring mom | October 22, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Ehrlich would have opposition in a Republican Primary.

Posted by: More than one | October 22, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

O'Malley supports the ICC "boondoggle" and slots which are both positions that Ehrlich supported. Ehrlich supported cutting the state budget. Of course the Dems spitefully rejected that idea. The one-party system doesn't work. History has shown that to be true. The typical Maryland voter, although educated, is too ignorant to realize that high taxes and fees, anti-business policies, and a bloated state budget add up to a world of hurt. If Dems are so smart, why do they need a nanny government? It's like a boy genius who's not potty-trained.

Posted by: B'ville | October 22, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

"Now, if we could only replace Jack Johnson."

You will. He's term limited in 2010.

"The CATO Institute just released their state financial report cards for 2008, gave O'Malley an F for fiscal responsibility. He got not only an F, but MD finished dead last in the nation. Congrats."

CATO is an ideological, small government think tank. It is not an objective analyst or observer by any stretch of the imaginaton.

Posted by: mkarns | October 22, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

to island:
Erlich got booted out of the state house because he's a Republican who acted like a Republican.
He sold our state park land to his friends and spied on innocent citizens.

He's scum. That's why he got booted, the more we know the worse he looks, that's why it's absolutely no surprise that he'd get beaten worse now than he did in 2006.

Posted by: Tim from Silver Spring | October 22, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

The GOP in Maryland MUST have a better candidate out there! Look harder! Find someone hard-working and smart, with integrity and a dedication to improving his/her community! Please please don't subject us to more Ehrlich. The man was as ignorant as he was unpleasant.

I'm an O'Malley fan, but when you run in an election or any contest, you want to face a worthy adversary!

MD GOP: look harder! Don't recycle Ehrlich - that will only confirm suspicions that the GOP is out of ideas and living in the past. And no more shady W cronies. New blood, please!

Posted by: Maritza | October 22, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

keep O'Malley and vote for obama too.
I want more taxes and spending, don't you?

Posted by: tunaman | October 22, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

I am a Democrat that voted for Erhlich. I think a divided government is best. My property taxes and income taxes did not increase under Erhlich. That is the one thing Repubs are good for...low taxes. PGC has the highest tax rate in the state and the second worst school system in the state. Something is wrong with this. It is time for a new County Exec. Johnson has done good things like development, only to really benefit his friends and not the citizens.

Posted by: FormerlyMD | October 22, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Of course...MD politics. I remember vividly a WashPost article about a poll they ran during the Erlich re-election campaign. It asked if you thought Erlich was doing a good job a governor. 84% said "yes." Then it asked if you were going to vote for Erlich. 65% said no. This is MD politics in one poll. Performance be damned, I'm voting Dem.

Posted by: Byte1 | October 22, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

YEA!! PGC.. I am with you. Jack Johnson out.

As for former Gov. Erlich, his problem - he didn't recognize that he did not win the election to become governor, KK Towson Lost the election. There is a distinct difference.

Instead of coming in and working across the aisle, like J Warner of VA; he came in like he had a mandate from the state residents. If he had been someone willing to work with the other party, umm maybe…

Posted by: Denise | October 22, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Well, a feel that every voter is allowed their opinion, but I asked anyone from the MD GOP (usually very vocal here) what they thought Erlich acheived. We would love to hear their view.

I support O'Malley, but disagree with im on slots and the ICC toll road boondoggle.

I do not see Erlich returning.

Posted by: Donny | October 22, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

It's MD. What do you expect? Some never learn... or they just enjoy wallowing in their cesspool. Either way, just stay out of VA. We have to many transplants fleeing the cesspool they created.

Posted by: resident1 | October 22, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Well we had Morella who was a Republican that acted like a Democrat, and everyone booted her too!

Back to the point, I think Donny (as far as zero support from Mike & Mike) and Byte1 have hit the nail on the head.

Posted by: Island 1 | October 22, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Last state election, I voted republican for all state held positions - even Erlich. I'm a registered democrat, but I have seen nothing but waste every time the state legislature is in session. O'Malley? I won't even go there. I would vote for Mickey Mouse before voting for him. Why do these people get in office and get re-elected over and over? We need something different in Maryland.

Posted by: AACResident | October 22, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Ehlich, who deceives himself by blaming his loss on a 'Democratic wind,' lost his election due to his "Tom Delay-like" abrasive incivility; his cronyism--attempting to sell state lands to friends at a bargain basement price [we had to amend the Maryland Constitution to stop that stunt!]; and his sleazy political tactics. Is there anyone left in the state who doesn't know that he hired homeless Philadelphians, bused them to Maryland, where they met with his wife, Kendal, got her blessing, and were sent to PG County to distribute fraudulent election flyers indicating that chief Maryland Democrats support him and Steele? Let him run--and get crushed.

Posted by: Commonsense 101 | October 22, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I don't see an O'Malley - Ehrlich rematch in 2010. I can't see O'Malley surviving a Democratic Primary challenge from Doug Duncan.

So look for Mr. Duncan to whomp Bobby Haircut in November, 2010.

Posted by: PG'er | October 22, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

The CATO report was written by a right wing proponent of the "gloabl tax revolution." He wants no corporate taxes and advocates shipping US jobs abroad. He hits O'Malley because he "enacted a sweeping $1.4 billion tax package that increased the corporate income tax rate, the top personal income tax rate, and the sales tax rate." I think the legislature had something to do with this -- an effort necessary to address deficits created by predecessors of O'Malley.

Posted by: Think About It | October 22, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

"Well, a feel that every voter is allowed their opinion, but I asked anyone from the MD GOP (usually very vocal here) what they thought Erlich acheived. We would love to hear their view."

Good question. I'd also like to hear what they think ex-Lt.Gov. Michael Steele, their other star player, has achieved to justify the hype over him.

I laughed when a state Republican said during the GOP convention that Steele's prominence and prime time speaking slot had absolutely nothing to do with his race. Just how stupid do they think we are? (More to the point how many white ex-LG's of Democratic states got so much attention? Or is an overhyped and failed Senate race supposed to be a great achievement?)

Posted by: mkarns | October 22, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

If Maryland Republicans re-run Ehrlich, they will actually be dumber than I previously thought.

Posted by: Bethesda | October 22, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Not to dwell on Morella, but she had a good run as a Repub in a Democrat county. I think she was ready to retire and new blood (Van Hollen, I believe) actually out-played her as a democrat.

Van Hollen has been successful, though so was Morella.

Posted by: Donny | October 22, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

As long as Amigo O'Moron has the illegal alien vote locked up, courtesy of his father-in-law Joe Curran, then no republican has a chance. Now, if we purged the voter rolls of illegal aliens, not only would Amigo lose big, but we could possibly reveal how he was not legally elected in the 04 election. If we only count those who are actual citizens, non felons, and those who are not dead, then O'Moron loses big.

Posted by: Citizen Payne | October 23, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Donny & Island1 - you all have no idea about MoCo politics.

Connie Morella lost her seat because the congressional district was redistricted and half her Republican base was removed. It had nothing to due with tired constituents or her middle-of-the-road politics.

She barely held her seat the election before redistricting because of the sharp rise of Democratic voters in Bethesda/Silver Spring. Governor Glendening and the General Assembly chopped-up the 8th district and she was a goner.

Posted by: PG'er | October 23, 2008 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Citizen Payne's paranoia about immigrants is laughable. Is he suggesting that the 116,815 votes that separated O'Malley and Bobby Haircut were illegal aliens that somehow snuck-past poll workers to cast a ballot?

Hell, if these folks are that good at voting, give 'em a green card because they are smarter than the Border Patrol, the IRS, the Board of Elections and Citizen Payne.

Posted by: PG'er | October 23, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

PGer, well said. I like to keep these blogs kind of "reality-based" as well.

Posted by: Donny | October 23, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

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