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Curry Coy About Plans but Hits O'Malley on Budget

The future of Maryland Republicans has dominated the state's political drama so far this week, with James Pelura resigning as GOP chairman and former cabinet secretary Larry Hogan launching an exploratory bid for governor.

But some Democrats lurking off stage who are unhappy with Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) could help shape the 2010 election cycle as well.

Wayne Curry, the former Prince George's County executive, said in an interview Tuesday morning that he remains dismayed by O'Malley's handling of the state budget.

Curry largely deflected speculation that he might challenge O'Malley in the Democratic primary -- or possibly run as an independent in the general election -- other than to say he "continues to observe what's going on in the political landscape."

"I'd love to be with the governor, but I don't know if I can be if he continues this death by a thousand cuts," Curry said, referring to the multiple rounds of budget cuts O'Malley has brought forward in recent months. "I don't think he's taken the state in a direction I'd like to see it go."

Curry was critical in particular about recent cuts in state aid to local governments. But he offered no specifics when asked what he would be doing differently to handle the budget in the economic downturn.

Meanwhile, George Owings, a former legislator from Southern Maryland who served as veterans affairs secretary under former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R), still seems poised to enter the Democratic primary. And former Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan, O'Malley's 2006 Democratic primary opponent, is continuing to lob verbal grenades at the governor.

By John Wagner  |  September 15, 2009; 10:07 AM ET
Categories:  John Wagner  
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