Marylanders continue to have a low level of support for former Gov. Martin O'Malley's presidential ambitions, a new poll for The Baltimore Sun and the University of Baltimore shows.
Only 7 percent of Maryland Democrats say they would vote for O'Malley for president, compared with 56 percent for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and 23 percent for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
O'Malley has failed to break out of single digits anywhere in the country, including his home state. Opponents cite O'Malley's lackluster polling in the state he led for eight years to question his viability on the national stage.
O'Malley is supported by only 4 percent of Democrats in Baltimore, the city he once led as mayor for two terms, and just 2 percent of primary voters in nearby Baltimore County, the poll found.
Brian Mosko, a 45-year-old retired Army sergeant from the Burtonsville area, said he felt O'Malley was a strong governor, and “did a lot of good for the state.” But he's not convinced O'Malley has the chops to run the country — at least when compared with Clinton.
“She is the only one with any type of experience in foreign affairs,” Mosko said. “The ex-governor of Maryland — he did Maryland, and that's about it.”
O'Malley's weak support in Maryland contrasts with successful campaigns in the past.
Two years before then-Gov. George W. Bush won the 2000 presidential election, 55 percent of voters in Texas said they would support his national aspirations, a poll by The Dallas Morning News and the Houston Chronicle found at the time. Sen. John McCain had support from 27 percent of Arizona Republicans, a plurality, according to an Arizona State University poll conducted a year before the 2008 presidential election.
Because the state's primary doesn't arrive until April 26 — nearly three months after the Iowa caucuses — Maryland voters are unlikely to play much of a role in choosing either party's standard-bearer. Maryland tends to hear less frequently from presidential candidates in person or through television advertising.