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O'Malley's 'worst hits' have a familiar ring

John Wagner

Supporters of former Maryland governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) received an e-mail Tuesday morning containing a humorous Web video that pokes fun at tax increases passed under Gov. Martin O'Malley (D).

The video is patterned after TV commercials selling music collections. As a guitar riff plays in the background, viewers see visuals of O'Malley's "worst hits," represented by compact discs with titles such as the "Income Tax Increase" and the "20% Sales Tax Increase."

Given O'Malley's side career as a musician, it's a clever ploy -- though not an entirely original one.

A strikingly similar Web ad was distributed in May by the North Carolina Republican Party to welcome Democrats in the legislature back to the capital.

That ad features Gov. Beverly Perdue (D), who is portrayed in the ad as the lead singer of Billion Dollar Bev and the Backbreakers -- a reference to the nearly billion in taxes that Perdue and Democrats raised the previous year. The band's hits include "Let's Tax Again, Like We Did Last Summer."

Pure coincidence? Ehrlich communications director Henry Fawell suggests so.

"The video that we put out this morning was conceived entirely by the Ehrlich campaign," Fawell said. Moreover, he said that the consultant that the Ehrlich campaign used to produce the video has done no work for the North Carolina Republicans.

"Our video was conceived internally, and we've gotten great response from supporters," Fawell said.

By John Wagner  | September 21, 2010; 2:34 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Elections, John Wagner  
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Next: National Democratic group returns fire on Ehrlich

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