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Posted at 2:10 PM ET, 02/21/2011

Ehrlich surfaces as ICC readies for traffic in Md.

By John Wagner

Thumbnail image for Md-OpeningDay-Ehrlich2.JPGFormer governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R), who has kept a low profile since losing his comeback bid in November, surfaced Monday at the ribbon cutting for the first stretch of the Intercounty Connector.

Ehrlich mingled at the event in Gaithersburg, which he attended along with Robert L. Flanagan, his former transportation secretary, and Mary D. Kane, his running mate in the 2010 gubernatorial election.

Gov. Martin O'Malley (D), who soundly defeated Ehrlich last year, issued the invitation, O'Malley aides said.

Ehrlich has skipped some other recent events typically attended by former governors, including O'Malley's inaugural last month and his State of the State address this month.

Greg Massoni, Ehrlich's former press secretary, said the former governor chose to attend the event because he was so instrumental in the ICC's history.

"Pretty much, he got the road done," said Massoni, who also accompanied Ehrlich at the ceremony. "It should be called the Ehrlich Highway."

The ICC was among Ehrlich's central accomplishments on transportation. After he used his Republican connections to lobby then-President Bush, a federal environmental review of the long-stalled project was fast-tracked, clearing the way for its eventual construction.

The first 7.2-mile segment of the ICC -- which links Interstate 270 in Gaithersburg and Norbeck Road, just east of Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring -- had been scheduled to open Tuesday morning.

That has been delayed until 6 a.m. Wednesday after forecasters predicted a wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow that authorities said was likely to stall last-minute work on the toll road.

Massoni said Ehrlich has made no decisions about his professional life since November and is remains on leave from his law firm, Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice.

By John Wagner  | February 21, 2011; 2:10 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Elections, John Wagner  
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Oh, by all means I agree. Indeed it SHOULD be called the Ehrlich Tollway. That'd be a very fitting legacy.

Posted by: laboo | February 21, 2011 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Yes I would give Bob the full credit for leading the ICC - a road paid by taxpayer funds and which we have to pay to use, and which I may never need.

Posted by: bfjam | February 21, 2011 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Sid Kramer Highway

Bob Ehrlich Causeway

Martin O'Malley Toll Plaza

Posted by: tcs1999 | February 21, 2011 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Is Ehrlich conceding his political career is over. Usually naming conventions for highways and bridges are reserved for dead people or those with great contributions to our society, the latter of which exclude Bob.

Posted by: cario1 | February 21, 2011 3:52 PM | Report abuse

It may work real well for employees, IF they find other jobs NOT in Montgomery County Gov. and in other Counties, Virginia? If those cuts are coming, it will be a shortcut drive, OUT.

Posted by: CountytaxpayingCHNII | February 21, 2011 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I say we rename it in his honor if he agrees to cover any revenue shortfalls.

Posted by: vmax02rider | February 21, 2011 7:36 PM | Report abuse

So, the worm resurfaces. Yeah. He got it done. Happened in 2003. OR 2011? What a loser.

Posted by: therev1 | February 21, 2011 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Man o man...Massoni is one sad kind of does he live with himself brownnosing Bobby the loser so much?

Posted by: unrest | February 21, 2011 11:57 PM | Report abuse

Ehrlich showed up hoping to get a job as a toll collector.

Posted by: MarilynManson | February 22, 2011 8:33 AM | Report abuse

The tolls are nessary to help balance the budget short fall created by the O'Malley. Don't blame Ehrlich

Posted by: cheverly1 | February 22, 2011 9:54 AM | Report abuse

I love it. The election is done and O'Malley's fans are deciding to take credit for the highway and blame any ills on Ehrlich. What's next? Libyan violence--blame Ehrlich. Relatively peaceful Egyptian overthrow--credit O'Malley. Grow up already.

Posted by: h20andoil | February 22, 2011 10:38 AM | Report abuse

This is likely to become just another future jammed road of America, costing 3 billion dollars to build, needing tolls, likely to damage and pollute nearby streams and contribute nothing to public transportation. I was also quite taken aback by the March 7th toll imposition date posted on the ICC highway electronic signs. Thought the public was told that imposition of tolls would not take place until April. And the electronic highway sign on the ICC (RT 200) most helpfully tells us to get an EZ-Pass without telling us where to go and what numbers to call for that item. I drove the ICC today just to see it for myself. I may just stick to non-toll roads to avoid getting "nicked" by the tolls every time I get on the ICC March 7th and on up. I will use it only if I am really needing to.

As for ICC being an Ehrlich Highway? The original idea for it I thought was the former Montgomery County executive Doug Duncan's to claim and not Bob Ehrlich's.
I was opposing the ICC when Doug Duncan was in office.

Posted by: mmhoover1 | February 23, 2011 4:54 PM | Report abuse

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