Martin O’Malley Fires at Jeb, Hillary: Presidency ‘Not Some Crown to Be Passed Between Two Families’

AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
Washington, DC

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, a likely 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, jabbed at former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton—his 2016 competition, should both run for the Democratic nomination—and at former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush this Sunday on ABC’s This Week.

O’Malley presented himself as an alternative for his party, saying he is willing to be more progressive on issues like inequality and Wall Street, adding that America would benefit from new leadership.

“Let’s be honest here, the presidency of the United States is not some crown to be passed between two families. It is an awesome and sacred trust,” O’Malley added.

The reference to two separate families undoubtedly means the Clinton family and the Bush family, which have—with the exception of the past few years of Barack Obama’s administration—dominated the White House since 1988. George H.W. Bush, Jeb’s father, was vice president from 1980 to 1988, then served as president for one term until 1992. Hillary’s husband Bill was elected president in 1992 serving until the end of the decade, at which point Jeb’s brother George W. Bush was elected president. George W. Bush served in the White House until 2008, when Obama was elected.

O’Malley’s line of attack from a populist perspective is something that conservative alternatives to the Bushes will likely use against the GOP establishment in the forthcoming 2016 GOP primaries as well, as everyone from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) to Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and more vie for the GOP nomination against Jeb Bush.

When asked if Mrs. Clinton would be a good candidate for special interests on ABC’s This Week, O’Malley responded: “I don’t know. I don’t know where she stands. Will she represent a break with the failed policies of the past? I don’t know.”

“We need a president who is ready to take on powerful and wealthy special interests,” he added.

According to Politico, O’Malley typically trails Clinton by more than 50 percentage points in early polls, but he could be Mrs. Clinton’s only challenger for the 2016 Democratic nomination.

O’Malley said he would announce whether or not he will run for president this spring.