ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)—When Gov. Martin O’Malley delivers his State of the State Address on Wednesday, his talk will center on reducing a billion dollar shortfall in the budget by any means necessary.

Vic Carter recently went to Annapolis to interview the governor as he prepares to face one of the toughest challenges of his political career.

He is already under fire for proposing more taxes on gasoline and a reduction tax deduction for high income earners. The governor is in for one of the toughest battles of his life as leader of the state.

The governor is keenly aware that the state’s roads and bridges are in need of repair. That’s why he says he needs to raise the wholesale tax on gasoline by as much as 13 cents a gallon in three years.

Carter: “Given the revenues that will be generated from this type of tax, I can hear the families now saying, ‘I can’t afford this.’”

O’Malley: “I believe it’s irresponsible to do nothing. I believe that inaction has a cost. So this is the conversation that we’ll have.”

The governor is also proposing fewer tax deductions for people earning more than $150,000 a year—a move already criticized by Republicans and some Democrats, including Comptroller Peter Franchot, whom the governor called out as political posturing.

Carter: “The other issue that people are concerned about is the additional tax on people who make $100,000 a year. You’ve already been criticized by Republicans about it, the housing industry, and the comptroller. How do you respond to them?”

O’Malley: “Well, there’ll be no shortage of criticism, and better ideas are always welcome. Those additional revenues will allow us to protect the investment that all of us have made in public education along with the hard work of teachers and administrators, which have led to us being recognized as having the best public schools in America four years in a row.”

Carter: “One of the concerns many people have had about their leaders is that sometimes they are out of touch with the common man.  A couple of questions I want to ask you, the average person would be concerned with everyday . . .  Have you any idea what the average cost for a gas of gasoline?”

O’Malley: “That’s about $3.60, $3.80.”

Carter: “What about a gallon of milk?”

O’Malley: “A couple dollars.”

Carter: “3.99.  . . . “A loaf of bread?”

O’Malley: ”Between about $3 and $5.”

Carter: “$1.19 to about $5.”

The governor has always positioned himself as a family man who is in touch with his constituents. To be fair, the governor was close on the cost of most things. After all, he has a staff that does his shopping and cooking, so he can focus on governing.

“The call of your question is ‘Are you out of touch with how real people live and with what we all have to face when we go to the grocery or buy gasoline?'” the governor said. “I’m not out of touch, and I know these are not the types of things that any of us want to do. But the better future we seek for our children is not something that happens by itself. I wish there were a way that we could do all of these things without asking anyone to do more. But at the same time I think people are willing to do a little more if it’s fair.”

So now the clock is ticking on two things for Gov. O’Malley. He has a long list of things to do in his final two years as governor.  He also has less than 24 hours to complete his State of the State Address, where he will outline his plan for Maryland, how much it will cost, and who should pay. We will be watching.

Comments (13)
  1. Jim says:

    Thanks for checking in with the Governor.. some leaders would put off tax increases and just let things go. No doubt it’s tempting and many governors do just that. Its a bit like Bush ignoring our increasing debt, mounting trade deficit, irresponsible business ‘leadership’ and leaving it to the current President to fix. He did of course keep the terrorists in check after 911 which is commendable. The insight I was hoping for in the interview was discussion on ending the tax. What is the plan to sunset the tax and what is the criteria for measuring when it is no longer needed…? I would liked to have heard something on that for sure.

    1. whatnow says:

      You do realize, of course, that Owebama increased the national debt in 3 years by more than Bush did in 8.

  2. sheeple says:

    Wow, I wish we all could be as strong a leader as the governer.I sure hope he takes his amazing insight with him when he represents Maryland in Washington D.C. Maybe his lead by example will further this wonderful path our nation finds itself on. With his solution based equations I am sure he will move us further along towards prosperity while showing us how bigger government is the way to go.I know he will team up well with the current administration and transform America into a beacon of light the rest of the world can follow.”Yes we can”…..”Resist we much”….”Believe”…..

  3. Joe Marylander says:

    Sheeple are you kidding me, for real! Do you know how many times over and over again a little more of a tax increase here and there as taken place over the last five decades in Maryland? Where does it end? My son make just a little over $11.00 dollars an hour working for a airline. He has one child to support. Recently the car that he purchased about 18 months ago from a used car dealer did not pass the Maryland Vehicle Emissions Test. The culprit a bad catalytic convertor. He does not have the monies to fix his car. Public transportation does not run from our neighborhood. Without assistance from others he will not survive in Maryland’s extremely taxed and expensive economy. He is looking for a chance to transfer out west were taxes are significantly less along with the rent and the cost of living.

    1. James Tibbs says:

      I,m sitting here in my living room listening to the white Oblunder tell us about how great of a job he has done for the great socialist state of Md. His pants are unfire badly. He is a habitual liar, but than again he can’t help himself he’s a socialist. People if this thug gets McKulski’s job he will ruin us, and yes, he will abondan ship, meanning that he will be saying so-long to Marylanders. The story on the street, and comming from the Md. dnc. is that McKulski will suddenly get sick, and retire immediatly. The Oblunder clone will step right into her shoes, no election, so look out.

  4. Scott says:

    Joe, sheeple is using what is commonly referred to as sarcasm. Just fyi…

  5. tylerjake says:

    Hey Jim, if you love catchy slogans so much why don’t you move to Cuba or North Korea?!

  6. Mork says:

    Vic, I am surprised you did not have Martin sit on your lap our hold his hand during the interview. How about asking Martin where the transportation funds disappeared to. Our why the residents of Maryland are funding the Illegal Aliens in this state, or how about the increase in budget year after year and the failure to reduce the budget in these hard economic times. What happen to real journalism, Vic do you not think this would be important to the listeners. The DEM’s have govern this state for over Fifty years, with all that Maryland has to offer we are ranked 49th in the nation for private job creation. If it were not for the federal government jobs in Maryland our situation would be catastrophic.

  7. S Montemurro says:

    Cutting tax’s for the higher income people…..NO raise their tax’s…why should they get a break …what about us little people that can hardly live from one week to the next…lets not forget the people who are disabled and have to have certain foods they have to eat…yeah right we cant afford to eat let lone pay for our medication. And now more taxes on gas so people cant afford to go to work…the doctors…but you bet your sweet butt all the higher income people can get to all the above. How about you help the homeless too. I had a Family member/ friend that died a coupe weeks ago in Aberdeen. There are Vets out there that fought for this country that have no place to go. Thats right they dont matter either .
    @ Mork.. you are so right. And they are cutting Gov. jobs too. My son enlisted in the army its time for him to re inlist they wont let him cause of the cut back .

  8. meeee says:

    Overthrow Omalley!

  9. FedUp Florida says:

    O’Malley: “Well, there’ll be no shortage of criticism. And better ideas are always welcome.”

    I guess his definition of better ideas and mine are two different things. Cut his bloated salary. Cut the bloated salaries of his endless well of assistants. Live in a more modest house. Show us he really is in touch with the people of Maryland. Actions are greater than words, and his actions don;t match up, regardless what he thinks in his bubble world where life is good for him.

  10. chearts77 says:

    Has aides do his shopping and other errands huh? Yeah, that sounds like a “common guy”. Too busy to do “peasant” duties, OweMalley? Oh, that’s right. You’re too busy raising every tax and creating new ones…

  11. meeee says:

    I want Omalley to live with only 25K for a year outright. With no home or vehicle to start… So he would be making about $350. per week after taxes. Bet he cannot make it. I bet my american citizenship on it

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