Nearly a month after announcing his presidential bid, Democratic hopeful Martin O’Malley has hired a campaign manager: Dave Hamrick, who advised Barack Obama’s 2008 election team.
Hamrick served as a grass-roots and voter-turnout strategist for Obama during the 2008 primaries and was a senior adviser in the battleground states of Michigan and Pennsylvania during the general election, according to a biography on his consulting firm’s Web site.
Hamrick’s hire, first reported by The New York Times, was confirmed Sunday night by O’Malley aides. Hamrick, who lists New York as his home town, did not return a phone call earlier Sunday seeking comment.
Since O’Malley announced his bid on May 30, his Baltimore-based campaign has been guided by Bill Hyers, a New York-based political consultant. Three of O’Malley’s aides hold titles of deputy campaign manager, but no one has been formally serving in the role of manager.
Hamrick’s hire was praised by several former O’Malley political advisers. Craig Varoga, a national consultant who was the chief strategist for O’Malley’s successful 2010 reelection bid as Maryland governor, said Hamrick is “a very good guy” who “sweats the details.”
“It doesn’t change the long odds, but he’s a real professional,” Varoga said.
O'Malley has been lagging behind Hillary Rodham Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the polls for the Democratic nomination.
Hamrick and O’Malley have at least one thing in common: an affinity for Bruce Springsteen.
On the campaign trail, O’Malley often quotes a line from the title track of the singer's 1980 release, “The River”: “Is a dream a lie if it don’t come true, or is it something worse?” O’Malley’s Celtic rock band, O’Malley’s March, has covered Springsteen songs.
Hamrick’s consulting firm’s Web site includes this in his biography: "Dave has seen Bruce Springsteen in concert more than 50 times.”