Gov. Martin J. O’Malley released a statement Monday on the termination of Ray Rice’s contract by the Baltimore Ravens.
Here is O’Malley’s emailed statement in its entirety:
“The video released this morning of this domestic assault was horrible, shocking, and reprehensible. Everyone can do more to help end the scourge of domestic violence. Please consider supporting the House of Ruth, and learn about what Maryland is doing to reduce violence against women and children.”
Rice was serving a two-game suspension for punching his then-fiancee and knocking her unconscious in an elevator in a New Jersey casino. He was eligible to be reinstated Friday.
On Monday, TMZ released additional video from inside that elevator showing the altercation.
The team announced it was breaking ties with the running back after seven seasons later in the afternoon. The NFL announced shortly thereafter that it was suspending Rice indefinitely.
O’Malley isn’t the only elected official speaking out on the Rice video and his subsequent release.
In a separate statement, Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown said the team’s decision to terminate Rice was the right one:
“The Ravens made the right decision today,” Brown said in an emailed statement. “No family is immune from the horror of domestic violence and we should never turn a blind eye – regardless of whether the abuser is famous or lives across the street. Our families and communities will be stronger when all of our wives, mothers, daughters and friends can live free from the fear of domestic violence, that’s why we must continue working to implement serious consequences for abusers while strengthening support for victims and survivors.”
— Bill Ferguson (@SenBillFerg) September 8, 2014
Del. Eric Luedtke, D-Montgomery County, on his Facebook page, praised the Ravens decision to release the running back:
“I may be a Washington fan, but today I’m pretty darn proud of the Ravens for making the right decision.”
On that same post, Del Kirill Reznik, D-Montgomery County, expressed disappointment over how the situation was handled by the team and the NFL:
“As happy as I am that they released him, and that the NFL has suspended him indefinitely, I’m still unhappy with both the Ravens and the NFL. I cannot believe that this video was suddenly a revelation today, and only took the action that they took because it became public and not because it was the right thing to do.
“It took the bottom-feeding TMZ website to get them to do the right thing. This action deserves an ‘it’s about time’ rather than any real praise.”
Rep. Elijah Cummings also issued a statement:
“I support the Baltimore Ravens’ decision to terminate Ray Rice’s contract, as well as the NFL’s announcement of his indefinite suspension. Domestic violence is a brutal, cyclical, and too often hidden epidemic in our society. I hope these punishments will send a clear message not just to professional athletes and public figures, but to anyone engaging in these heinous acts that domestic violence and abuse will not be tolerated under any circumstance.
“I commend Commissioner Goodell and the NFL for admitting error and taking corrective action in this case, and for changing the NFL guidelines on handling domestic violence offenses.”
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, speaking Monday at a news conference in Atlantic City, said Rice displayed “an incomprehensible level of violence” and called the behavior “completely unacceptable,” according to the Associated Press.