Ehrlich Passes on Good Political Advice; Former Governor Tells Students He Quit Reading about Himself

Article excerpt

Byline: Tom LoBianco, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

TOWSON, Md. - Former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. said yesterday he spent two months as governor before taking the advice of Rudolph W. Giuliani and President Bush: Don't read news articles about yourself.

"I sat down and had a talk with myself," Mr. Ehrlich told a roomful of Towson University students in professor Richard Vatz's persuasion class. "When you get to the executive [branch] you really have to be careful with that stuff because it's much more personal."

Mr. Ehrlich in November lost his re-election bid to Martin O'Malley, a Democrat. However, he has maintained a public presence through co-hosting a weekend radio show and doing campaign work for Mr. Giuliani, a Republican presidential hopeful. Mr. Ehrlich also has a book coming that he says will follow conservative writer Ann Coulter's style of "going beyond the pale" to sell copies.

Mr. Ehrlich, 49, yesterday talked mostly about his time in office, but also discussed politics today in Annapolis, predicting that slot machines would be legalized and large tax increases would be passed during a special session this year.

Mr. Ehrlich also praised House Minority Leader Anthony J. O'Donnell, Southern Maryland Republican, and Senate Minority Leader David R. Brinkley, Western Maryland Republican, whom he called two rising stars in the state party.

"I thought they did terrific jobs," in the 2007 General Assembly, Mr. Ehrlich said. "But the problem is without the executive branch and without the votes, they have limited ability to impact the debate."

Mr. Ehrlich's guest lectures in Mr. Vatz's class have been routine since his days in the House of Delegates.

"Governor Ehrlich, the students ostensibly did not know you were coming, but when I told them an unnamed guest would be coming, there were knowing smiles from the more perspicacious students," Mr. …