As Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley took the stage at the Democratic National Convention last night, pundits in the audience dug out their smart phones and provided insta-analysis on Twitter.
The feedback was not entirely positive. Some of the criticism undoubtedly stems from high expectations and reinforces the important role that O'Malley is playing in national politics. When he is talking, opinion-makers are paying attention.
In this case, perhaps he wished they were not.
Josh Greenman, a New York Daily News opinion editor, tweeted that the Democrats had "solid night" but added "with the exception of O'Malley."
The Huffington Post's Michael McAullif wrote "Maybe O'Malley's job is too say, "See, Dems have boring white guys, too."
Time Magazine's White House correspondent Michael Scherer and New York Times conservative columnist Ross Douthat both compared O'Malley to Tim Pawlenty.
Pawlenty, the Republican governor of Minnesota is perpetually on the short list of GOP national leaders -- but never seems to make the cut.
"My sense is that Martin O'Malley is the Tim Pawlenty of a future Democratic presidential campaign," Douthat tweeted. Minutes later Scherer sent this to his 16,000 followers: "Martin O'Malley may turn out to be the Tim Pawlenty of the Democratic Party."
Naturally Republicans took aim. Former Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele (and former Md Lt. Gov.) tweeted "I see my Governor Martin O'Malley is speaking. Hold on to your wallets."
It was not all bad. Markos Moulitsas, the founder of the liberal website Daily Kos, wrote "Unlike GOP 2016 hopefuls at RNC, O'Malley hasn't forgotten the election this year."
In an example of the wide-spread media speculation that there is a budding rivalry between O'Malley and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, another rising Democratic star, MSNBC host Christopher Hayes tweeted: "Half thought O'Malley might get Nancy Kerrigan'ed by Andrew Cuomo's folks so glad to see he's made it to the stage."
There is one tweet that O'Malley will most appreciate. A New York City museum that honors the Battle of Brooklyn adored the opening lines of O'Malley's speech, which hearkened back to Maryland's role in that battle during the Revolutionary War.
"Huzzah for Governor O'Malley for recognizing the Marylander 400 and the Battle of Brooklyn at the DNC!" tweeted The Old Stone House.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun