O’Malley: State of our state is strong

Gov. Martin O’Malley (CHUCK KENNEDY/KRT)

Gov. Martin O’Malley (CHUCK KENNEDY/KRT)

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley gave his eighth and final State of the State address last week in Annapolis.

He used the Jan. 23 speech as a way to chronicle his two terms as governor and call on the General Assembly to increase the minimum wage, move toward universal pre-kindergarten, better protect domestic violence victims and invest in transportation infrastructure.

“I think it’s a nice coda to his major successes in many ways,” said Arthur Abramson, executive director of the Baltimore Jewish Council. “He sets out what’s been done, and he says to America, ‘Look what I’ve done, and you know, I might be ready for the next step,’ whatever that is.”

O’Malley has hinted at a possible presidential run in 2016.

In the address, O’Malley listed accomplishments, such as the repeal of the death penalty, passage of the DREAM Act and legalization of gay marriage.

“The state of our state is strong and growing stronger by the day,” he said.

He highlighted Maryland’s job recovery, environmental triumphs, such as trees being planted on public lands, and public safety and health achievements, such as traffic death reductions.

Abramson said the O’Malley administration has been a great friend to the Baltimore Jewish Council and the Jewish community at large.

“[O’Malley] continues a long line of governors being extremely supportive of our needs,” he said, adding that the capital budget reflects BJC’s priorities and concerns.

In his speech, O’Malley acknowledged that his administration fell short in the rollout of the state’s health-care enrollment website.

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