Day By Day

Monday, May 22, 2006

Maryland Politics -- Shakeup In O'Malley's Campaign

First Steele, now O'Malley!

As the national party leaderships veer ever farther away from the interests of common people in an attempt try to placate their lunatic activist bases, State and local candidates are declaring their independence. First Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, candidate for Senate, fired representatives of the Republican National Committee from his staff. Now Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley, Democrat candidate for governor, has done the same.

The WaPo reports:

Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley announced a shakeup in the senior staff of his campaign for governor last night, naming a former leader of the Maryland Democratic Party to replace a national Democratic operative as his campaign manager.

The campaign said Josh White, former executive director of the state party, would replace Jonathan Epstein, who was tapped to lead O'Malley's campaign last year. Epstein's résumé included leading field operations in Democratic presidential contender John F. Kerry's win in the 2004 Iowa caucuses.

Read it here.

The disconnect between the Beltway denizens and the nation has never been greater than it is today, and there is real anger building. There is really very little that the party national leadership can provide to local and State candidates except money. Their advice is worse than useless. Steele and O'Malley have been wise to sever their ties to the national leadership.

There is a dynamic here that affects both parties. The national party organization listens not to voters, but to people who will write big checks, and increasingly those check-writers represent the lunatic fringe of our political culture. What people like Steele and O'Malley are affirming is what Tip O'Neill said long ago -- "All politics is local" and that is even more true in an off-year election cycle.

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