Sunday, March 27, 2005

Will Pat run for Guv? The Sphinx Speaks.

Berkowitz: ...Are you going to be running for Governor in the year 2006?

O’Malley: ...[Y]ou know what would be a surprise to a lot of people is that I wouldn’t.
Jeff Berkowitz: [you and your] wife Mary Judith- you have two children, grown children- right?

Former State Senator Pat O’Malley: Yes.

Berkowitz: And, now two grandchildren?

O’Malley: Yes. Two and we are expecting a third.

Berkowitz: Congratulations.

O’Malley: Thank you.

Berkowitz: And, so, Let’s get right down to it. Are you going to be running for Governor in the year 2006?

O’Malley: Well, you know, I could easily say stranger things have happened, but I don’t think it would be strange that I did. I think what would be strange, probably, you know what would be a surprise to a lot of people is that I wouldn’t.

Berkowitz: So, we would--it would be almost to say that it is likely that you will be running in the Republican Primary in March, 2006?

O’Malley: You know when we ran in 2002, there were three candidates running, an incumbent Attorney General [Jim Ryan], an incumbent Lt. Governor [Corinne Wood] and myself—I was the first one to announce—I stayed through the course in the race and I came in second. And, it surprised a lot of people that a state senator who did not have statewide name appeal could do as well. But, we did prove that you could do well downstate- people appreciated our message even though we came from the Chicagoland area. It took a while to crack that and get people to understand it, but the point is—

Berkowitz: To crack what?

O’Malley: To crack downstate. But, the reality is that people have come to accept that Pat O’Malley has the ability to appeal across the state. I can appeal not only in the suburbs where I live, but certainly in the southwest and northwest side of Chicago, which is where my roots are and of course downstate.
O’Malley: …The facts in 2002 were that both my opponents spent right in the neighborhood of 8 million dollars.

Berkowitz: What did you spend?

O’Malley: We spent about 4 ½ [million dollars].

Berkowitz: Are you going to have to do that again?

O’Malley: I would say that you are going to have to spend that much or more.

Berkowitz: If you ran in the [2006 Gubernatorial] Primary?

O’Malley: Correct.

Berkowitz: You’d have to spend that [much] or more and how much of that—

O’Malley: And, by the way, all these other candidates who’ve put their names out there have not spent that kind of money. You know, running statewide is one thing; running statewide for Governor is a whole other experience. [Was this intended as a reminder from O’Malley to the others-- but especially to Topinka?].

Berkowitz: …How much of that 4 ½ million [dollars] that you spent last time was …your own funds?

O’Malley: Substantially, many of those dollars were our own resources?

Berkowitz: 70 or 80 %, something like that?

O’Malley: I would say, in that neighborhood.

Berkowitz: Would you do that again?

O’Malley: I wouldn’t like to.

Berkowitz: But, you could?

O’Malley: Life has been good.
Berkowitz: We are going to continue to speak as the credits roll but I very much want to thank our guest, …former state senator Pat O’Malley, former candidate for Governor in 2002 in the Republican Primary… and perhaps a candidate in March, 2006 in the Republican Primary. Let’s just give an answer. Can we bank on it that you will be there; you’ll be running in the Republican Primary?

O’Malley: Nice try, good try.

Berkowitz: What’s the answer? Will you [be there].

O’Malley: I am going to share that information with everybody at the same time.

Berkowitz: When will that be? When will you make that decision?

O’Malley: It will be after this [legislative] session [in Springfield.]

Berkowitz: So, you are thinking about it and you will announce, one way or the other, right.

O’Malley: That’s correct.
Pat O’Malley, once and perhaps future Republican Primary candidate for Governor, recorded on March 26, 2005 and as will be airing on the Suburban edition of Public Affairs next week [week of April 4] and on the City of Chicago edition of Public Affairs on Monday night, April 11 at 8:30 pm on Cable Ch. 21. See the end of the blog entry, Giangreco V. Berkowitz to the right, above and below, for a detailed suburban airing schedule.
Jeff Berkowitz, Host and Producer of Public Affairs and an Executive Recruiter doing Legal Search, can be reached at