That time Martin O’Malley hung out with Jonah from “Veep”


"Veep" -- starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Vice President Selina Meyer -- is, without question, the best political show on television. (It blows "House of Cards" out of the water.)  And, one of the brightest spots of the show is the clueless and now former White House staffer Jonah played to dislikable perfection by Timothy Simons.

The series, which is now in its 3rd season, films in a warehouse near Columbia, Maryland and has been a major highlight of O'Malley's film tax credit expansion, a program designed to lure the likes of "Veep" and "House of Cards" to film in the Old Line State.  That effort became the center of considerable controversy in the closing moments of the Maryland legislature's just-concluded term as lawmakers debated whether to give $3.5 million in additional tax credits to keep "House of Cards" in the state. Wrote WaPo's Jenna Johnson and John Wagner of the kerfuffle:

The drama blew up from there, blurring the line between real politics and Hollywood politics. Lawmakers would quote the show’s central character — Underwood, an unscrupulous politician who threatens, charms and murders his way to greater power — while standing on the House floor, which had been used as a set in Season 2. Then Underwood, played by Spacey, came to an Annapolis wine bar in late March to snap selfies with lawmakers and whip votes for the tax credits.

The charge against the tax credits has been largely led by Del. C. William Frick (D-Montgomery), whose colleagues have dubbed him the Underwood of the House, though he is too mild-mannered to truly pull off the part. Frick has said he does not dislike the show; he just thinks this tax-credit program has gotten out of hand.

In the end, the additional $3.5 million in tax incentives didn't make the cut.  Which might mean no cameo for O'Malley, himself an aspiring presidential candidate, on "House of Cards" or "Veep" anytime soon. Of course, when you've already been fictionalized in the form of Tommy Carcetti, everything is down hill from there.

Chris Cillizza writes “The Fix,” a politics blog for the Washington Post. He also covers the White House.

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Chris Cillizza · April 17, 2014

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