Hillary Clinton Reportedly Gave Martin O'Malley Permission to Run Against Her in 2016

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Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, a somewhat uninspiring alternate choice for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, is reportedly planning his presidential run with some alleged support from presumed frontrunner Hillary Clinton. According to Politico's Anna Palmer, O’Malley spoke with political allies in April and told them that he called oracle Clinton, who with her all-knowing wisdom gave him the following mythical advice: "he should do what he needs to do.” While Clinton could say just about anything at this point and remain the Democrat's clear favorite to win, O’Malley has been trying to boost his profile by visiting key election states like Iowa and New Hampshire, and making legislative decisions guaranteed to make Democrats happy. 

O’Malley, a former mayor of Baltimore, isn’t letting his relatively low profile stop him from carving out his liberal credentials in preparation for a run. He's a supporter of gay marriage and pro-environment policies, and recently signed a minimum wage increase for Maryland. But in addition to not being Hillary Clinton, his lack of charisma might be a problem. O'Malley spoke at the 10th anniversary for the Center for American Progress last year, but followed a frighteningly energetic speech from Al Gore and fell flat after robotically repeating the not-quite-catchy slogan "better choices, better results, strong leadership." Things got mildly exciting last fall after Texas Gov. Rick Perry trolled O’Malley's record on taxes and business in Maryland, and attempted to poach the state's Beretta gun factory,  but sparks failed to fly even when the two faced off on CNN’s Crossfire.

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O’Malley’s spokeswoman denies that he’s made a decision, but it’s no secret that he's expressed interest in running. Real Clear Politics gives O’Malley an average of 2.3 percent of support to Clinton’s average of 65.8, and in a New England College poll he received 1 percent to Clinton’s 60. It’s numbers like this that make some, like former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, think he’ll just be better off as a “loyal soldier” to Clinton, rather than fighting a battle against her. 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.