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O’Malley retreats with supporters, raises $125,000 for congressional Democrats


Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) gathered with more than 100 of his supporters this weekend for a retreat on the Eastern Shore that included a fundraiser that netted more $125,000 for five Democratic congressional candidates, participants said.

The two-day event in Easton comes as O’Malley prepares for a possible 2016 presidential run. But those attending the closed-press gathering said there was little overt talk about a White House bid. Instead, much of the focus was on the governor’s record in Maryland, the national political scene more broadly and O’Malley’s efforts to help fellow Democrats get elected around the country this year.

To that end, O’Malley’s retreat agenda included a fundraiser Sunday featuring House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) that benefited three Democratic incumbents as well as two Democrats running in Republican-held districts, all outside Maryland.

Pelosi, a Baltimore native whose late father, Thomas D’Alesandro Jr., is a former mayor of the city, also attended a dinner Saturday night that was part of the retreat sponsored by O’Malley’s political action committee, known as O’ Say Can You See.

Other attendees included a mix of O’Malley’s longtime Maryland supporters and others who’ve taken an interest in his future from around the country. Those on hand at various events included Reps. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) and Donna F. Edwards (D-Md.), as well as former Sen. Birch Bayh (D-Ind.), who now lives on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

The briefings included updates on O’Malley fundraising and political travels and an overview of the national scene presented by O’Malley’s pollster, Fred Yang, according to participants. The participants requested anonymity to more freely discuss the closed-press event.

Sunday’s fundraiser — a brunch at an historic hotel in Easton — benefited Reps. Timothy H. Bishop (D-N.Y.), Ann Kirkpatrick (D-Ariz.) and Ann Kuster (D-N.H.), as well as Democratic challengers Amanda Renteria in California and Andrew Romanoff in Colorado.

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

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