The facts don't support O'Malley's claim to a 'victory lap'

Dan Rodricks reports that Gov. Martin O'Malley is taking a victory lap after touting his great accomplishments as governor at the MACO convention held recently in Ocean City ("Martin O'Malley starts to take his victory lap," Aug. 20).

The governor stated that he achieved No.1 rankings in public schools, income, entrepreneurship and women-owned business during his reign. He also stated that Maryland has regained 99 percent of the jobs lost due to the recession of 2008.


Wow, if these statements were true, Mr. O'Malley would deserve a lap around the state reminiscent of Cal Ripkens' famous Iron Man trot around Camden Yards. Unfortunately, the facts once again get in the way of a good story.

For example, U.S. News and World Report states that California has the nation's No. 1 school system (in fairness, it ranks Maryland No. 2). And the U.S. Census Bureau says Connecticut is ranked No. 1 in income (New Jersey ranks No. 2 and Maryland is ranked No. 5).


A study published by the University of Nebraska says Massachusetts has the No. 1 ranking in entrepreneurship, with Maryland not even posting in the top 10. Finally, a report issued by American Express has Maryland ranked No. 8 in women-owned business.

But what about all those jobs we recaptured since 2008? Well, in the very same edition of The Sun, business reporter Eileen Ambrose wrote that Maryland employers cut 9,200 jobs in July. Today, unemployment in Maryland stands at 7.1 percent. It was just 3.5 percent when Mr. O'Malley took office.

Facts don't matter much in politics and they certainly won't keep Mr. O'Malley from doing what he does best.

Mike Kaiser, Baltimore