Ehrlich likely to run in '10, wife says
Rep. Bartlett reveals major surgery to correct balance at Frederick fundraiser
Former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. is likely to run for governor if he can win, Ehrlich's wife announced at a Republican fundraiser in Frederick on Tuesday night.
"The numbers look pretty good," Kendel Ehrlich said. "He doesn't want to do this without winning."
There has been speculation for months that Ehrlich would seek the Republican nomination so he can challenge Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) in this year's election. While the former first lady said she was not making any formal announcement Tuesday, she said Ehrlich (R) had hired consultants who are crunching the numbers to determine whether he can pull off another Republican victory in an overwhelmingly Democratic state.
Kendel Ehrlich filled in for her husband during a fundraiser and 40th birthday celebration for Del. Joseph R. Bartlett (R-Dist. 4A) of Middletown. The former governor had been scheduled to appear at the event at Volt restaurant in Frederick, but canceled due to a business meeting, Bartlett said.
Volt is owned by Bryan Voltaggio, who appeared on the television cooking competition "Top Chef."
Kendel Ehrlich said her husband would need 66 percent of the votes in Frederick County in order to win in 2010, according to consultants.
"It is an effort that we have asked you to do before, and you have been amazing," she told the group of about 60 Bartlett supporters. "But you have to do even better."
Kendel Ehrlich said both she and the former governor believe Republicans in local races will fare better with a strong person at the top of the ticket. She said Ehrlich is the strongest candidate.
"He wants to win," Ehrlich said. "He wants to set the state back on track."
At the event, U.S. Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett (R-Dist. 6) of Buckeystown, the father of Joseph Bartlett, arrived at the fundraiser with a small bandage on his left ear and revealed he had major surgery on Dec. 30.
Bartlett underwent an elective procedure to correct an inner ear problem that was affecting his balance, spokeswoman Lisa Wright said.
Wright said the surgery corrected the "annoying" issue, and that his health is superb.