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George promises tax cuts as he enters Maryland GOP primary for governor

Del. Ronald A. George discusses his run for Maryland governor with reporters. (John Wagner/The Washington Post)

Del. Ronald A. George (R-Anne Arundel) on Wednesday became the latest Maryland gubernatorial hopeful to make his 2014 bid official, promising supporters he would roll back a gas-tax increase, cut business taxes and focus on job creation.

George, a jeweler, also promised to offer Marylanders a 20 percent sales tax credit on all in-state purchases as part of a “10-point promise” unveiled during a speech in Annapolis.

George is among more than a half-dozen Republicans eyeing the race. Harford County Executive David R. Craig (R) announced his bid on Monday. Former Republican National Committee chairman Michael S. Steele is also considering the contest.

George, a second-term delegate, told reporters that he thinks his focus on practical solutions to problems will make him appealing to enough Democrats to win in Maryland, where Republicans are outnumbered in party registration by more than 2-to-1.

“I bristle at how much partisanship gets in the way of getting things done,” George said. “I have no problem working with people.”

In coming months, George also promised to flesh out his plans on issues including education, transportation and the environment.

Before his announcement in a hotel ballroom, he shared with reporters a lesser-known part of his biography: as a soap-opera actor in the late 1970s.

That included an appearance on “The Doctors,” the long-running NBC daytime drama.

“It was a bit part, and I died,” George said.

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

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