Conservative Republicans tend to disagree, but Slate and statistics blog FiveThirtyEight are calling Martin O’Malley’s bluff. He’s not nearly as liberal as he’d have us believe, they say. In fact, he’s to the right of Hillary Clinton, even as he sets himself up as the liberal alternative.
FiveThirtyEight looked at fundraising, public issue statements, and votes in Congress. Clinton raises more left-leaning money; she makes more liberal statements; and, while O’Malley has no Congressional record to compare, she scores pretty liberal there, too. Overall, Clinton scores 5o on the liberal scale (100 is most liberal), while O’Malley earns a 33.
Slate points out that, as imaginary as O’Malley’s liberalness may be, his strategy might make sense if there were one big issue he could define himself by. But there isn’t. At least not one as important to voters as the Iraq War was in 2008, when Barack Obama used it to differentiate himself from Clinton.