OK, so Barbara Mikulski is NOT running again for her seat in the U.S. Senate in 2016. She’s done, the nearly octogenarian midget is finished. It’s about time – and (with apologies to bad rubbish everywhere) good riddance to bad rubbish!
Anyway, what I’m writing about here is far bigger than the passing of a gassy legend out of the public sphere. I’m writing about the attempted reentrance of someone who is no longer in the public eye – someone who wants to somehow come back and reenter the public eye as would one of those red, itchy, sties that cause your eye to water – and make it as a GOP presidential candidate. I’m writing of the former Maryland Governor, the wooer of non-existent flames of political spark, Bob Ehrlich.
Coming on the heels of another former Maryland Governor, Democrat Martin O’Malley, getting shut out – as in receiving ZERO votes at some DEM shindig’s presidential poll or other a week or two ago, I’ve decided it’s time to pull this piece out of oblivion. Besides, in all three of my incarnations as a blogger, I’ve said “As long as Bob Ehrlich does something stupid, I’ll continue to write about him.” Well, there are very few things as stupid as getting your doors blown off twice while running for governor – and then deciding you’ve got what it takes to run for president. And THAT is the exact scenario in which Mr. Ehrlich now finds himself. Or something.
And, yes, I know what’s to follow is anecdotal – as opposed to empirical – evidence, but it is evidence, nonetheless, of how certain people view an Ehrlich for President campaign. It starts with this question I asked on my Facebook wall a month or so ago:
“Okay, Serious Question: How Many of You Still Give Former MD Governor Bob Ehrlich any Credence, Politically Speaking? Keep in Mind that He’s More or Less Running for President. If You Respond, be Advised that Your Attributed Response May be Used, in Whole or in Part, in a Blog I MAY Write.”
Below, in part and/or in whole, are samplings of the response I received…
Bruce Myers, (a political wiz from AA County, who’s related to Maryland Legislative Watch): I think Bob Ehrlich spent, or misspent, all of his political capital in the last campaign. Actually I think he borrowed heavily and has never been able to or has any hope of paying it back…
Dave Aughenbaugh (a former GOP candidate and one helluva bright guy): He’s a junior varsity player nationally speaking, and I think that’s being generous…
Gary Davis (an old, politically astute friend): Ehrlich needs to run, if only to get his ideas out there in the mainstream thinking.
Jason Boisvert (Author of the Dark Tech Observer Blog): He’s a one-term governor who lost his re-election, and then cannibalized the state party in a rematch and blew THAT too.
Rick Saffery (A name known to many in the Liberty Movement): Hmm, Ehrlich brought us the first flush tax. He also set up the Maryland gestapo fusion centers…Basically, the best thing that I can say about Bob is that he was 100-times better than Kathleen Kennedy Townsend.
George Goebel (Have no idea who this guy is, but he IS funny): One of our most ineffective governors. He’d make a good VP pick for Sarah Palin.
Bigg Jim Jones (a Law enforcement professional): Bob was for Bob. He is a political animal. He turned his back on those who helped him get elected.
Joan Wood (An out of state view offered by one who did EVERYTHING for the GOP while a Marylander): He never forgot me. And I still like him as a person and a man. Would probably make a terrible presidential candidate…(He was) persuaded by Kendel.
Julie Brewington (Newly elected Wicomico County GOP Central Committee Member): Not a fan. You can quote me.
Don Murphy (former Delegate and now a lobbyist and consultant): While I generally agree with much of the above, I have to give him credit for being the first Republican Governor to sign a medical marijuana bill.
William Campbell (2014 MDGOP Comptroller Candidate): I like Bob Ehrlich, but I don’t believe that he has any chance to win the GOP presidential nomination…Bob’s gubernatorial shelf life has long expired, and he has not been active enough to have any name recognition. As Dirty Harry said, “It is a wise man that knows his limitations”.
Indeed, it is a wise man who knows his limitations.
To everyone who responded to my question, thank you! Now, to answer a question I get asked a fair amount: WHY? As in why would Bob Ehrlich run for President? Or, why do you say he’s running? He hasn’t announced anything – at least not yet.
Well, the reasons why Bob Ehrlich is running for president, I believe, are two-fold. One is what Joan Wood said above. He was “persuaded” by his wife, Kendel “I am the First Lady of the State of Maryland” Ehrlich. Kendel missed the chefs, after all, after Bob had gotten bumped as governor back in 2006. And, as First Lady of the United States, she’d certainly have chefs. Ask Claire Underwood.
The second reason I believe Bob Ehrlich is running for president is his ego. After telling everyone that Maryland would never again elect a Republican governor – which it did in Larry Hogan – Ehrlich suddenly finds himself in the position of no longer being the top GOP draw in Maryland. His ego can’t handle that. So, he is running for president as a means of one-upping Governor Hogan. After all, Bob Ehrlich simply CAN’T not be Maryland’s Number One Republican now, can he? Don’t be ridiculous!
As for Ehrlich not yet “announcing” why he’s running but, rather is merely visiting certain states over and over and over again…his running for president might not be the wisest move he could make, but the man’s not stupid. By not announcing he’s running – when, clearly, he is – he can always say “I never said I was running for president” when the inevitable comes to pass and he starts getting O’Malley like numbers on the national stage. It saves him a ton of embarrassment.
Whatever, don’t run for president, Bob. Save your dignity. Furthermore, for the relative price of a haircut, you could run for Maryland’s open senate seat in 2016.