Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Plank for Governor Push: Aris Speaks

So, yesterday I talked to former DBED Secretary Aris Melissaratos about the whole Kevin Plank for governor rumor I reported on a few days ago.

Secretary Melissaratos said he met Kevin Plank when they both participated in a CNN “Town Square” meeting back during the Ehrlich Administration. Melissaratos says he was “so impressed” with Plank’s charisma and leadership skills. Since then, he has gently, perhaps even playfully, urged Plank to leave the business world behind and take the political plunge on a few occasions.

Still, he characterized his musings as “wishful thinking” on his part, and does not believe Plank would actually leave Under Armour behind to embark on a political career. He also does not believe there is any organized Plank push underway, though he admitted the genesis of the idea started with him.

Ultimately, I don’t believe a Plank candidacy will happen, either.

Why would he leave a job he clearly loves, and a company which made him a billionaire, to immerse himself in the internecine warfare of Annapolis politics? I cannot imagine that going from being a powerful CEO to a Republican governor forced to work with a recalcitrant Democratic legislature would be a pleasant transition for a man used to getting his own way.

Still, the rumor is percolating out there, something I now attribute to people deliberately seeding it across the political landscape. Why? Perhaps it is wishful thinking among members of the business community, or mischief-making on the part of activists unhappy with one or more of the GOP candidates frequently mentioned.

Or, perhaps it is simply ego flexing by Plank himself.

Anyway, I’m not sure there is anything further to report on the Plank front. But I will continue to keep my eyes and ears open. 

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