Bob Ehrlich loves to talk about how he wants to create jobs in Maryland. However, as is typical of Bob Ehrlich, he lacks details, substance and a good record to stand on. Instead he’s just rooting for the economy to sour so that he can keep using the same stump speech. Whatever he’s got in mind, let’s hope he doesn’t do what he did at his law firm during the last few years.
Last Friday, The American Lawyer announced its Am Law 100 list – a list of the top grossing law firms in the nation. Notably, Bob Ehrlich’s law firm – Womble, Carlyle Sandridge & Rice – was among the five firms that fell off The Am Law Daily Top 100 list, having posted a 5% drop in revenue in 2009. According to The Am Law Daily:
Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, which posted a 5 percent drop in gross revenue on a 1.6 percent decline in head count. “Almost all the drop in revenue was on the transactional side,” says managing partner Keith Vaughan. “There was just a lot less deal activity.”
Bob Ehrlich is sure to come up with plenty of excuses for his law firm’s poor performance. He can’t blame the economy because he doesn’t want to acknowledge that we’re actually digging out of a global recession (perhaps he didn’t get the memo that Maryland led the nation in adding 38,500 jobs in March). He’s likely to try to blame Governor O’Malley for Womble’s poor performance much like he’s now trying to pass the buck on his record spending that left Maryland with a structural deficit. Then again, Bob Ehrlich lives in a fantasyland.
In reality, Bob Ehrlich only cares about preserving his own job, not creating jobs for Marylanders. After voters fired him four years ago for his poor performance, he used his connections to land a cushy job as the head of Womble Carylye’s Baltimore office. After this latest performance review, Bob Ehrlich knows the gig is up at Womble Carlyle so he decided to run for Governor again. After two failed stints as a manager, it’s clear that Maryland can’t afford Bob Ehrlich.
While the Olympics are in full swing in Vancouver, Bob Ehrlich is playing his own winter games here in Maryland. It has now been 11 days since Ehrlich was first asked about his possible violation of the FCC’s “payola rules” and the public STILL hasn’t received a straight answer. However, Ehrlich continues to bring home the gold for team Womble Carlyle.
The all-but-announced candidate has a three-year record of influence peddling at Womble Carlyle that includes promoting at least one of his clients on television without disclosing his relationship as required by the FCC’s “payola rules.”
Perhaps Ehrlich thinks that our “allegations didn’t deserve the dignity of a response.” However, it’s clear that he’s playing games with his answers as his spokesman Henry Fawell admitted he didn’t know whether they had disclosed that Ehrlich had a financial stake before pushing his client’s position.
So while Ehrlich continues his appearances on Hannity, FOX45 and WBAL, without responding to important questions, we’re going to continue looking for answers as we’re sure Marylanders would like to know.
What is he hiding?
Who are his other clients?
Are there other instances where he promoted clients over the airwaves without properly disclosing the relationship?
If he didn’t violate FCC rules, why not say so? If he did violate FCC rules, he needs to own up to it.