The former governor of Maryland and former mayor of Baltimore is doing his best to become everyone’s “favorite Martin” especially Democratic primary voters, but is having real problem finding the traction to move his campaign for the presidency forward.
No matter what O’Malley seems to do, he is unable to get out of the shadow of others in the Democratic presidential nomination process.
The media and the establishment, including money people, ignore O’Malley for Hillary Clinton who has the higher name recognition and can bank on her former positions, including having once been the nation’s First Lady.
Then there is that independent, out-of-box politician from Vermont, Bernie Sanders, who keeps stealing the thunder and the crowds. Sanders is the Democratic equivalent to the Republicans’ non-politicians.
So what is a liberal former governor to do?
Even in Maryland and his hometown of Baltimore, O’Malley is running into barriers to his favorability. With the death of Freddie Gray in April, O’Malley became a symbol of the policies, which he implemented as mayor which led to the outrage which set the city on fire. O’Malley has had to fight back against charges that he aided and abetted the abuses of police officers in one of America’s premier cities.
Who is Martin O’Malley?
Besides being a former mayor and governor, O’Malley believes he is the answer for a continuation of Democratic control of the White House. He is lined out 15 goals for what he terms a way to “rebuild America”.
1. He wants to increase American families’ median net worth by $25,000 over the next 10 years once he is president.
2. By 2050, O’Malley wants all electricity in the country to be generated by renewable energy.
3. The former governor wants to cut the unemployment rate of 16-24 year-olds to 7% from the current 14% within three to four years.
4. O’Malley is shooting for full employment of America’s veterans by 2020.
5. The candidate wants to reform immigration while providing a path to citizenship for all 11 million undocumented aliens.
6. The governor is proposing a plan to allow college student the option to graduate debt-free in five years.
7. His goal is to up the college complete rate by 25%.
8. Childhood hunger should be, but a memory by 2020.
9. We need to save and redeem lives in the criminal justice system, O’Malley espouses.
10. Cutting gun deaths (homicides, suicides, accidents) in half by 2025 is another of his goals.
11. Cutting in half deaths from drug overdoses, the governor wants to accomplish by 2020.
12. By 2020, O’Malley wants a drop in the infant mortality rate by 10%
13. Separation of commercial and speculative banking needs to happen with five years, the candidate contends.
14. Within his first year as President, O’Malley wants a restoration and more enforcement of anti-trust laws.
15. Public funding of all congressional elections is O’Malley’s final goal to be accomplished within five years.
At least O’Malley on his web site (http://martinomalley.com) calls the 15 points goals and not promises. Many of his goals have a populist ring and will find a likeness and kinship with many voters on all sides of the political spectrum.
Then there is the reality. Much of what O’Malley would like to accomplish and what is politically feasible are worlds apart. Much of what the governor is proposing comes across as a counter to that Democratic Socialist in the race, Bernie.
O’Malley also seems to be courting the Elizabeth Warren wing of the party and moving to the left of Hillary.
So far in the polls, O’Malley is barely making a dent. The rally is around Bernie while Hillary tumbles down the hill with Jack. Even non-candidate, Vice President Joe Biden, is nearly 14 times more the vote-getter than O’Malley.
Martin’s current composite ranking is 1.5% nationwide.
From the Desert with my feet planted firmly in the Cornfield, the pudding will come on October 13, when the Democratic wannabes square off in a debate hosted by CNN.
Will O’Malley last for another month and a half to make his case to the Democratic voters or will he have to fold his tent and wait for another year to join the carnival?
Will the candidate be able to convince enough people to make him their favorite Martin?