Maryland Lt Governor Anthony G. Brown was the guest speaker at the Chamber of Commerce's monthly Eggs and Issues event today. Make no mistake. It was a campaign speech. Following the announcement of his candidacy at a picnic in Prince George’s County on May 10, 2013, this was just one stop on his campaign trail.
I read that he plans to run on the successes of the O'Malley-Brown administration. As anyone who knows me could imagine, I am disgusted with the outcome of the 2013 legislative session. For this reason I felt compelled to attend this campaign event. I wanted to hear for myself how he plans to paint the state of our state, our business climate, our many tax increases, and our many state regulations as accomplishments to be celebrated. Those are just the subjects that I thought were relevant to this audience at the Chamber. I personally also would have liked to have heard how he can make the worst 2nd Amendment infringements in the country besides NY sound like anything but unconstitutional, unnecessary, and oppressive.
|It's Barack Obama! Right?!|
|The Gong Show|
This administration was completely driven by O'Malley's self interest in running for president in 2016!
"We have fought for our successes. We need continued economic prosperity and a growing economy, and the economy grows when businesses want to come to Maryland and when businesses want to stay in Maryland.
Not only do businesses not want to stay in Maryland, but neither do the productive citizens of the state! It is estimated that 40,000 people left the state in 2012.
"Businesses want to stay in Maryland when we provide the investments in infrastructure."
"Government needs to provide these investments, but with fiscal responsibility and we have adhered to that..."
|Barack! Is that you?!|
The speech was precisely 15 minutes in length followed by a Q&A session. I give every politician credit for submitting to Q&A. I could tell already that this candidate was pretty safe with this crowd. This audience was polite, gentle, even grateful!
|All unicorns and rainbows here!|
Q. [inaudible] Is there someone we should tie in with for senior housing?
A. We have many programs like tax credit programs and grant programs. Ben on our staff can talk to you and lead you to the different programs and departments.
Q. [COC host] There is an opportunity to build a stadium and to revitalize Hagerstown. How best can we work with Annapolis?
A. We already provided $100,000 for a study. Now your challenges are largely local. We will look to your leaders.
|A poke in the eye to the Mayor and City Council!|
Q. Thank you for your support for schools and libraries, but could you add to that support for the arts and museums?
A. If you look at our budget you will see an increase for the arts. I am a big believer in the arts.
Q. How is sequester impacting Maryland now and in the future?
A. We accounted for it in our budget this year, raising the Rainy Day Fund from 5% to 6% [Wow!] to mitigate the impact on the Headstart Program and furloughs for government employees. [In other words, there was no impact because it was a gimmick to try to get more spending.] We only account for one budget year at a time. Not sure how it will impact next year's budget. We take each budget year as it comes. [Hagerstown actually got an INCREASE in CDBG money.]
Q. You say we are poised to be more business friendly, but the impression is that it is not so. How can we change that perception?
|Candy coating makes everything more palatable.|
|One last gong. I promise.|
There were no surprises. It was a campaign stop. The democratic candidate for governor was singularly given a captive audience at a Chamber of Commerce event. They rolled out the red carpet for him. What will surprise me is if a Republican candidate for governor gets the same opportunity and is met with such...glee (some were absolutely giddy).