The Washington Post

Bill Clinton, Nancy Pelosi and a Las Vegas casino operator among O’Malley gift givers

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley at a rally in March. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) got flowers last year from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). Former president Bill Clinton sent a holiday ornament and a pen set. There was a box of avocados from the Mexican ambassador and a book about the Chesapeake Bay from a Las Vegas casino operator looking to move into the Free State.

All told, there were some 125 gifts, valued at more than $3,600, that O’Malley detailed last week as part of his annual financial disclosure filing with the state.

It was another good year for the governor’s library. Books were by far the most popular gift, with O’Malley logging nearly 90 of them in 2012.

James J. Murren, the chairman and chief executive officer of MGM Resorts, gave O’Malley “Fight for the Bay: Why a Dark Green Environmental Awakening is Needed to Save the Chesapeake Bay.” The book, valued at $19.95, was received as state leaders were contemplating a special legislative session to authorize a new casino in Prince George’s County. MGM is expected to be among the bidders for that license this week.

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the congresswoman from Florida who leads the Democratic National Committee, gave O’Malley a pair of political reads. And Kamala Harris, the attorney general of California, shared a copy of her book, “Smart on Crime.”

O’Malley, who fronts a Celtic rock band on the side, also picked up a handful of compact discs. Luka Bloom, an Irish folk-rock singer whose songs O’Malley has covered, gave the governor a copy of his CD, “This New Morning.”

Several foreign ambassadors also show up in O’Malley’s gift log. Besides the avocados from Mexican ambassador Arturo Sarukhan, O’Malley received a book from Erlan Idrissov, ambassador of Kazakhstan. It’s title: “Kazakhstan: Surprises and Stereotypes.”

There was also a calendar from Ichiro Fujisaki, the Japanese ambassador. And a chocolate basket from Mohamed Abdulla Al-Rumaihi, the ambassador from Qatar. Valued at $200, the chocolates were among the priciest gifts O’Malley reported.

John Wagner is a political reporter covering the race for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination.



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