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Government & Politics

Political notes: Moore taps campaign vets for his administration, Biden coming to B’more, party poop, plus gavel news

The Maryland State House. File photo by Danielle E. Gaines.

Gov. Wes Moore (D) is bringing his campaign manager into state government.

Moore announced Monday that Ned Miller would be working for his administration as a senior adviser and director of public engagement. Miller’s hiring was one of six personnel announcements Moore made, which included chief data officer within the Department of Information Technology, director of scheduling, and three new members of his communications team.

Miller worked most recently as campaign manager to Moore and Lt. Gov. Aruna Miller (no relation). He previously managed campaigns across the country, including for former U.S. Rep. Abby Finkenauer of Iowa and for U.S. Rep. Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey, who was elected as a Democrat but later flipped to the GOP.

He also has statehouse experience, managing former New Jersey Senate President Steve Sweeney’s 2017 re-election campaign and then working in the New Jersey Senate Majority Office. He also worked for President Obama’s reelection campaign in Florida.

Patrick McLoughlin has been tapped to be chief data officer in the Maryland Department of Information Technology. His previous roles include director of data solutions at Johnson, Mirmiran, & Thompson, an engineering consulting firm in Washington, D.C., where he led data strategy, data management, governance, and analytics practices, and director of business intelligence for the Department of Information Technology.

Moore has hired Arnelda Broadway to be his director of scheduling. Most of her career has been in the hospitality industry, including handling marketing and publicity at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach. But the Prince George’s County native has also worked as an events planner at the National Governors Association.

The three additions to Moore’s communication’s team are: Maureen Regan as deputy director of communications, Brittany Marshall as senior press secretary, and Carter Elliott IV as press secretary.

Regan has worked for state government for more than a decade, most recently as communications director with the Governor’s Coordinating Offices. Prior to joining the governor’s office, she was deputy communications director with the Maryland Department of Health, where she led a number of special projects and initiatives related to Maryland’s COVID-19 pandemic response.

Marshall worked most recently as press secretary for former Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford (R) and also did media relations for the Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Transit Administration. She has also been a TV reporter and producer.

Elliott worked for Moore’s communications team during the 2022 campaign. He has also worked in the administration of former Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) and for the Democratic Party of Virginia, and in other political roles.

The members of the communications team will report to David Turner, a veteran of the Democratic Governors Association who was appointed communications director earlier this month.

“I am confident that our administration is building a team that is fiercely dedicated to serving the people of Maryland,” Moore said in a statement.

Moore is scheduled to announce the newest member of his cabinet on Tuesday afternoon in the State House. It is widely believed that he will name his pick to serve as Transportation secretary.

Jill Carter gets a gavel

Sen. Jill Carter (D) will be the chair of the Baltimore City Senate Delegation this legislative session. Carter is serving her second term as a senator on the Judicial Proceedings Committee.

“Baltimore City has an unparalleled opportunity to advance our priorities in Annapolis,” Carter said in a written statement. “With Baltimoreans serving as Governor, Comptroller, and Senate President, it’s our responsibility and moral obligation to ensure our city’s priorities are met. We will make overdue and needed improvements to education, transportation, infrastructure, and equity of opportunity in order to grow our city and move it into the future for all its people.”

Carter said the city’s delegation is “comprised of talented and committee senators determined to deliver unprecedented results for our constituents.”

During the legislative session, Carter said, the delegation will prioritize the city’s budgetary needs and ensure equitable economic development and opportunities throughout Baltimore.

Andy Harris gets a gavel

With the GOP now in control of the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Andy Harris, the lone Republican in Maryland’s congressional delegation, is getting a gavel. He’ll be chair of the House Appropriations Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and related agencies subcommittee.

Federal departments funded through this subcommittee’s annual appropriations bill include the Department of Agriculture, the Food and Drug Administration, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and the Farm Credit Administration. Harris, who was elected to Congress in 2010, has served on the Appropriations Committee since 2013 and has served on the agricultural panel since 2015.

“I am confident that his knowledge of the agriculture economy and his background as a physician will be important assets as he leads it forward in our new Congress,” Appropriations Chair Kay Granger (R-Texas) said in a statement.

Harris called the appointment “an honor.”

“Agriculture is both a critical sector in our country’s economy, and the economic backbone of Maryland’s First Congressional District,” he said. “Additionally, as a physician, I am excited for the opportunity to work with the FDA to ensure the safety and efficacy of the latest developments in drug and medical device research, as well as food safety. I look forward to the important work we will do in the coming months as we address the many issues in this subcommittee’s jurisdiction.”

Biden coming to Baltimore

Details are still scant, but the White House announced Monday that President Biden would be coming to Baltimore next Monday for an event touting how Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding will replace the 150-year old Baltimore and Potomac Tunnel, which creates the largest bottleneck for rail commuters on the Northeast Corridor between Washington, D.C., and New Jersey.

“Additional details to follow,” the White House promises.

Feeding frenzy

Here’s perhaps the surest sign that this is the closest thing to a “normal” General Assembly session since COVID-19 hit in March 2020: Receptions for legislators are back with a vengeance.

Take Tuesday’s schedule, as listed on the legislature’s protocol calendar, as an example: The action begins at 4 p.m., when the organization Visit Annapolis and Anne Arundel County is hosting a reception for Anne Arundel lawmakers at The Ellipse.

From 5-7 p.m., the lobbying firms Harris Jones & Malone and Capitol Strategies, along with the public affairs shop Blended Public Affairs, are hosting a reception for all 188 lawmakers at Harry Browne’s. Half an hour later, the Nurse Practitioners Association of Maryland is hosting a reception for all lawmakers in a different space at the same venue.

Two other events start at 6 p.m.: A dinner for the House Economic Matters Committee and the Senate Education, Energy and the Environment Committee, sponsored by Choptank Electric Cooperative, at, fittingly, The Choptank; and a dinner for the Senate Finance Committee by the One Fair Wage Coalition, at O’Brien’s.

From 6:30-9 p.m., Care First BlueCross BlueShield is treating the House Health and Government Operations Committee dinner at Osteria 177,

There are at least seven more events on lawmakers’ calendars for Wednesday, and another three on Thursday.