Email Insights: Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley backs Charlie Crist in Fla. Dem. primary

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What makes the latest email from Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley interesting is not bashing Florida Gov. Rick Scott, or his call for raising the Sunshine State’s minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.

It is that O’Malley — who is busy building a “2016 résumé liberals will love,” according to the Washington Post — is weighing in on the Florida Democratic primary.

Not the general election, mind you, but a primary.

O’Malley is backing former Gov. Charlie Crist, a reformed Republican, over former state Senator Leader Nan Rich, a much more committed liberal and lifelong Democrat.

One reason might be that O’Malley is the past chair of the Democratic Governors Association, which just gave $500,000 to Crist. In addition, he is being talked up for the 2016 presidential race; O’Malley could use a high-profile name like Crist on his side.

That is if Hillary Clinton does not run.

O’Malley noted that during the 2010 campaign, Scott did not know what Florida’s minimum wage was when asked live on CNN.

Since then, Scott has refused to answer the calls of Floridians — including a large number of Republicans — to raise the state’s minimum wage from the current $7.93 an hour to $10.10.

“No one who works full time should have to raise their family in poverty,” the email continues. “That’s why, in Maryland, we worked with business owners, workers, faith leaders, and activists to raise our minimum wage to $10.10. Our action will lift over 400,000 of our state’s residents out of poverty.”

Charlie Crist is one person who understands that a “rising wage lifts all votes,” O’Malley says.

And as Florida’s next governor, Crist will do what is necessary to benefit the more than 1.2 million workers and their families who work for minimum wage, he adds.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.