Jim Mone/AP.

When he’s not campaigning for the presidential election, you might find upbeat Maryland mayor Martin O’Malley practicing with his Irish folk-rock band. Never heard of him? O’Malley’s been there before. In 1999, when he first ran for Maryland mayor, he was a Caucasian candidate running in a predominantly African-American city. O’Malley was considered an underdog. However, he not only won the election, he went on to make reforms that caused TIME magazine to name him one of America’s top five mayors. Currently trailing third in Democratic polls behind Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, O’Malley hopes to beat the odds once again.

Keep on reading for a quick overview on his ideas and beliefs:

Background: Martin O’Malley was born on January 18, 1963. His father was a bombardier in the U.S. Army Air Force during the second World War and became an Assistant United States Attorney. His mother was also involved in politics, and has worked in Congress for nearly 30 years. His parents taught him from an early age the importance of public service, which led O’Malley to pursue a political career for nearly all of his life. In 1988, he became the frontman of his band O’Malley’s March and was briefly called ‘the Rock ‘n’ Roll Governor’. In 1999, he won the election for Maryland mayor, was re-elected, and continues to serve as the Maryland mayor to this day. He was Maryland’s governor from 2007-2015.

Foreign Policy: 

  • Launch a series of multinational treaties to protect the environment.
  • Open the World Trade Organization, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund to wider participation and scrutiny.
  • Negotiate with Iran in order to remove potential nuclear weapon.
  • Oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal.
  • Have Congress pass an Authorization for the Use of Military Force that clarifies the parameters for use of US ground troops.

The Economy:

  • Raise the minimum wage to $10/hour.
  • Cut unemployment rates among young people in half.
  • Make it mandatory for banks to separate commercial and speculative banking.
  • Raise taxes on the top 15% while cutting taxes on the bottom 85%.
  • Extend unemployment benefits to the long-term jobless.
  • Allow companies and workers to complete on a level playing field by reauthorizing the Ex-Im bank.

Domestic Issues:

  • Ensure that all higher-education students have the option to graduate debt free.
  • Put 11 million immigrants on the pathway to citizenship. Was the first governor to pass the DREAM Act, which would grant undocumented immigrants granting conditional residency and after meeting further qualifications, permanent residency. Has also supported DACA and DAPA.
  • Prioritize green energy by adopting the Clean Cars act, raising the gas tax by 2% per year and by 2050, generating 100% of American electricity with renewable energy.
  • Enable citizens to conduct business with public agencies by creating a chief information officer to drive the digitization of the federal government.
  • Implement public financing of congressional campaigns.
  • Cut deaths from gun violence by increasing gun control. Ban assault weapons, limit the size of gun magazines and require fingerprints to own a gun. Toughen the enforcement of gun control laws.

Social Issues:

  • Reform criminal justice system  in order to ensure fair sentencing and rebuild trust between law enforcement and those they serve.
  • Reach full employment for American veterans by 2020.
  • Legalize federal abortion funding.
  • Reduce deaths from drug overdoses by expanding and improving addiction treatment.
  • Increase social security benefits to allow elderly Americans to retire with dignity.
  • Provide equal rights for LGBTQ population. Voted for same sex marriage and signed Maryland’s first anti-transgender discrimination law.
  • Repeal the death penalty.

Quotes: 

“Together with President Obama, we are moving forward, not back.”

“It’s time to put the national interest before the interests of Wall Street.”

“We make our own future; we govern ourselves, and to govern is to choose.”

“This is not how our economy is supposed to work! This is not how our country is supposed to work! This is not the American Dream!”

“All of us are included. Women and men. Black and white people. Irish Americans, Asian Americans, Latino Americans, Native Americans. Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Americans. Young and old. Rich and poor. Workers and business owners. Gay, lesbian, transgender and straight Americans. Every person is important, each of us is needed.”

Muppet he most resembles: Walter. They’ve both got big dreams and quirky personalities.

Photo from muppet.wikia.com

Photo from muppet.wikia.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources: martinomalley.com, brainyquote.com, ontheissues.org