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O’Malley Gives State Of The State Speech; Gas Tax & Jobs Are Big Priorities

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Pat Warren joined the Eyewitness News team in 1992. Pat came to WJZ...
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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)—Governor Martin O’Malley asks lawmakers to approve higher taxes. In his annual State of the State Address, the governor praised Maryland’s economic progress.

As political reporter Pat Warren explains, O’Malley says Marylanders will have to do more.

O’Malley tells Maryland lawmakers the state needs to raise taxes. The state of the state is strong, he says, but too many people continue to search for work.

“This is why I am asking everyone to do more,” O’Malley said.

His jobs creation plan is couched in a gas tax increase that will fund construction projects that put people to work. He also wants to double the flush tax to protect the bay and raise income taxes on people who make more than $100,000 a year.

“Now look, I know that every family is still feeling the effects of this recession,” he said in his address. “The people I serve are the people you serve. I know this is very difficult to ask. But nobody else is going to do this for us except for us.”

Republican lawmakers say the state shouldn’t be doing it all.

“You know the governor can’t have it both ways,” said Senator E.J. Pipkin, Senate minority leader. “He uses words to talk about increased jobs and yet on the other hand he’s got proposal after proposal raising tax after tax.”

“There’s a lot of people in this room on both sides of the aisle that are very disgusted with this governor right now,” said Del. Anthony O’Donnell, House minority leader.

Although the governor enjoys a party majority in the General Assembly there are likely to be some changes in his plans before they come to a final vote.

The governor also urged lawmakers to pass his bill allowing same-sex couples to marry.

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