Lt. Gov. and Senate Candiate Speak At Talbot Dem Women’s Club

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Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown

Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown

The 2014 Maryland campaign season seemed to be in full swing Sunday afternoon at the annual meeting of the Democratic Women’s Club of Talbot County.  Two Democratic candidates for office in 2014 spoke – Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown, who is running for governor, and Cheryl Everman of Federalsburg, who is running for the State Senate in District 37.

The meeting, at the Academy Art Museum, drew about 80 people.

Everman’s presumed opponent is Richard Colburn, the Republican incumbent. “He hasn’t done anything in 20 years,” Everman said.  “We have a lot of major issues and nothing is getting done: physical infrastructure like roads and bridges, technical infrastructure like broadband, and education on the Eastern Shore. If we don’t have the technology, we can’t train kids for 21st century jobs.”

Cheryl Everman

Cheryl Everman

She said Colburn, a Republican in an overwhelmingly Democratic legislature, has no leverage, but he also doesn’t work hard to convince state officials about the needs of the Eastern Shore.  “With him unwilling to fight, nothing happens.  We need someone who will work hard to make the state see that the Dover Bridge is a big safety issue.”

Everman is a former Dorchester County Democratic Central Committee chair and an elector for the First Congressional District in the 2012 presidential election.  She was a delegate to the 2004 Democratic National Convention. She said new district lines makes the 37th a winnable district for a Democrat. She said her campaign is all about “bringing in the prosperity” that the Eastern Shore needs.

Brown seemed to agree that the Eastern Shore has gotten the short end of the stick.  He said that for all the successes of the O’Malley-Brown administration, it isn’t enough if all Marylanders don’t have the same opportunities and access to benefits.

“This is a successful state,” Brown said. “College is more affordable, crime is at record lows, we have the best schools in the nation and we’re recovering jobs lost in the recession.”  But, he said, “having the best schools overall isn’t enough if students in some counties don’t have the resources that students have in other counties. We need to make education and health care equal statewide.”

He also spoke about efforts to encourage doctors to practice in areas that need more doctors.  “Maryland ranks No. 2 in the number of doctors per capita,” he said, “but we rank 35th in distribution of doctors.”

On other issues, he said the O’Malley-Brown administration would be pushing for an increase in the minimum wage in the 2014 session, and that if elected he would make universal pre-kindergarten programs a priority.

One question from the audience seemed likely to throw him off message – the impact of higher gasoline taxes on the Eastern Shore, but he quickly pointed out that while Eastern Shore people may feel they’re paying more in gas taxes to fund mass transit in Montgomery County, the fact is that Montgomery County receives only about 26 cents in state services for every dollar it contributes to the state government.   “We need to realize that we’re all in this together,” Brown said.  “We’re all Marylanders.”

The Democratic Women’s Club of Talbot County meets monthly on the second Wednesday. More information is available from Joyce Scharch atjoyce202@verizon.net.

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