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As 2010 session ends, Ehrlich points to 2007

Ehrlich clasped hands.jpgHours before the curtain closed on the 2010 session of the Maryland General Assembly, former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) emailed a fundraising solicitation to supporters -- targeting a tax increased passed in 2007.

"With your help, we'll get Maryland back on the right track, and #1 on my list of priorities is repealing Governor Martin O'Malley's 20 percent increase in the sales tax, which disproportionately hurts low and middle-income Marylanders and small business owners who are already grappling with a recession," Ehrlich says in the solicitation.

Maryland's sales tax was raised from 5 percent to 6 percent during a special session of the legislature called by O'Malley (D) in 2007 to address a looming budget shortfall. It was part of a package of $1.4 billion in annual tax increases passed during the session, which also included hundreds of millions in spending cuts and a move to let voters
decide whether to legalize slot-machine gambling.

O'Malley has characterized the sales tax increase as "tough but correct," arguing that Maryland would be in far worse fiscal shape without the 2007 revenue increases.

Ehrlich first pledged to repeal the sales tax increase during his announcement speech last week in Rockville. The fundraising solicitation makes mention of the 2010 session as well. It notes that as soon as it ends, O'Malley will be able to resume his fundraising. The governor and legislators are barred from raising money during the 90-day session.

"This campaign is going to be tough, and I doubt that we can match the liberal establishment dollar-for-dollar, but I don't think we will need to," Ehrlich says in the solicitation. "The liberals in Annapolis have accumulated a horrible record of massive tax increases, out-of-control spending and out-of-touch liberal programs."

By John Wagner  |  April 12, 2010; 8:31 PM ET
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How does Mr. Ehrlich intend to balance the budget? Another 40% tuition increase, perhaps, like last time?

Ehrlich's policies have led to plenty of fee increases that burdened home owners and the middle class.

A good state costs money. Maryland provides the best public education in the country. Few states maintain their roads as well as Maryland.

You get what you pay for and the Democrats have delivered good returns for our investment.

Posted by: Hellmut | April 13, 2010 12:38 AM | Report abuse

We are an nonprofit representing the Azerbaijani-American community, and are trying to do research on health care, taxation and social security issues. Basically, through our research, we are overwhelmed with tons of information, and in order to be able to clearly and concisely formulate the choices to our members, we would be very interested in seeing some one-pagers outlining the pro's and con's on these topics. It would be also interesting to see what are other similar nonprofits thinking and doing. Being a grassroots organization, with a diverse membership, we need to be able to "keep it short" and easy to understand for busy people who don't particularly like or enjoy politics. If you have some tips, pointers and such information, could you please email it to me directly , or via our website

Posted by: jancanan | April 13, 2010 6:48 AM | Report abuse

Good public schools you have got to be kidding me. Hellmut must not live in Prince Georges County or Baltimore City. I paid close to $50,000 ayear in tuition for my kids because the public schools were so good I did not want my kids attending them.

Posted by: cheverly1 | April 13, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

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