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O’Malley takes ‘Believe’ campaign to New Hampshire

State of the StateAssuming you had something better to do, you probably missed Gov. Martin O’Malley on C-SPAN Saturday night speaking to a gathering of New Hampshire Democrats at the state party’s annual Jefferson Jackson dinner.

O’Malley spoke to the audience about his time as mayor of Baltimore and was introduced by a nearly 4 minute video that looks a lot like a video meant to introduce candidate O’Malley.

“I’m sorry if some of you thought you were about to watch another episode of The Wire,” he quipped.

The Maryland governor told the crowd he wanted to tell “the story of us, of Baltimore and New Hampshire.”

During the keynote speech, O’Malley recalled his time as mayor of a city he described as “the most violent, most addicted and most abandoned city in America” and a little girl he called “Amber” who came to an early meet the mayor event to ask if he knew that her neighborhood was called “zombieland”

“You see, there big difference between the Baltimore we carried in our hearts and the Baltimore we saw in our headlines and our streets,” O’Malley said. “And you know, our biggest  enemy wasn’t the drug dealers. It was our own lack of belief. A culture of failure that had too many of us wallowing in some sense that nothing would ever work and we had countless excuses about why we shouldn’t even try.”

Two months ago, O’Malley criticized the rise in violent crime in his former city and said he believed it was driven by a decline in the number of arrests made since he left the city.

The two-term Maryland governor is testing the waters for a potential run for president in 2016 and the speech in Manchester, N.H. is seen as a potential first step in that direction. New Hampshire is home to first presidential primary election.

O’Malley may have his work cut out for him between now and 2016. Many polls over the last year show him in last place with a scant 1 percent to 3 percent support. Hillary Rodham Clinton has been the odds on favorite in all of the early polls

In May a New England College poll showed Clinton leading the pack with about 65 percent of those surveyed saying they would vote for her. O’Malley finished dead last in a field of six.

O’Malley posted similar numbers in that same month in a poll conducted by Quinnipiac University.

In March, a poll conducted by the Washington Post found that Clinton was more popular in Maryland than O’Malley.