New Generations of Tech Interns and Voters

I’ll be working with Governor Hogan on behalf of one of his work force development initiatives next year.

The governor announced this week that he will “fund the Maryland Technology Internship Program [MTIP] for the first time in state history, which provides matching funds to companies for internship stipends.”

I introduced the bill that created MTIP in 2014. It authorizes a state payment for college students interning with a high tech company.

This fall, I met with the Governor’s staff to lobby for funding for the program as part of the incentive package presented to Amazon on behalf of Port Covington as a site for the company’s new headquarters.

This won’t be the first time that I’ve worked with a Republican administration on legislation. I introduced the William Donald Schaefer Scholarship, which provides a one-year college scholarship in return for a one-year commitment to a public service job.

Governor Ehrlich funded the program from the outset. Future State Senator Bill Ferguson was one of the recipients.

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“We’ve lost the South for a generation.”

President Johnson said that after signing the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

LBJ knew how to count votes, but in this instance he was wrong.

The Solid South for the Democrats did become Richard Nixon’s Southern Strategy and the transformation of the South into a solid bloc of Republican states.

But it took 53 years, from July 2, 1964, until this past Tuesday, more than a generation, for a Democrat to win the Senate election in Alabama.

It also took the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 for African-Americans to be able to register to vote in the South.

Mitt Romney is not the problem

The Republican nominee is being thrown under the bus for saying that he lost the election because, in part, free contraceptives were among the gifts President Obama gave to Democratic constituencies.

However, Mr. Romney is not outside the mainstream of today’s Republican party, as the following examples demonstrate.

When the Maryland General Assembly adopted the marriage equality bill, only one Republican senator and two Republican delegates voted yes.

Twenty years ago, when the legislature enacted the law protecting a woman’s right to choose,  three GOP senators and ten delegates voted yes.

Three years ago, I successfully introduced a bill dealing with the removal of human remains from a burial site.  Among the people who can arrange for the reinterment is a domestic partner of the decedent.  For that reason, 28 Republican delegates and all but one of the GOP senators voted no.

The Supreme Court has agreed to decide the constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.  That provision applies to states and localties with a documented history of discrimination in their election laws.

Consequently, they must obtain approval from the Justice Department or a federal court before making any changes to their laws.  This past month, several states were prevented from implementing voter-identification laws or changes in early voting.

If the Court rules that this requirement is unconstitutional, the Obama administration would introduce legislation to protect voting rights.  When President Johnson sought Republican votes for civil rights legislation, he appealed to their membership in the “party of Lincoln.”

Absent a major reversal, such a plea today would fall on deaf ears.

  • My Key Issues:

  • Pimlico and The Preakness
  • Our Neighborhoods
  • Pre-Kindergarten
  • Lead Paint Poisoning