Speaker Pro Tem Adrienne A. Jones, left, swears in House Speaker Michael Busch, as his daughter Erin and wife Cindy, far right, look on during the opening day of the Maryland General Assembly in 2017.
Speaker Pro Tem Adrienne A. Jones, left, swears in House Speaker Michael Busch, as his daughter Erin and wife Cindy, far right, look on during the opening day of the Maryland General Assembly in 2017. (Amy Davis / Baltimore Sun)

The recent Baltimore Sun editorial, “McIntosh should be next speaker” (April 21), was a very disappointing read. Actually, Del. Adrienne A. Jones should be the next speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates for a number of reasons.

First, Delegate Jones has served as speaker pro tem of the House for many years, filling in for the late Speaker Michael Busch in presiding over and steering the chamber. She has earned the right of succession by way of her quality, dutiful service next to Delegate Busch.

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Second, Delegate Jones, by virtue of her profile, brings much-needed gender and, just as important, racial diversity to the top tier of state government. As a so-called liberal-progressive state, we are long past the time of being governed overwhelmingly by white males. The Big Three, as described in the editorial, the governor, the Senate president and the House speaker positions in Maryland, have never been occupied by a person of color. The Board of Public Works is all white, and our congressional delegation is shamefully all-male.

Third, Baltimore residents may be buoyed by the prospect that one of our own, Delegate McIntosh, breaking into the Big Three, but Delegate Jones is no stranger to Baltimore. I met Adrienne, her brother, Barry Williams, and their brothers at St. Pius V Catholic Church in Harlem Park when we were all kids. Despite living in Baltimore County, they commuted to Baltimore each Sunday for Mass and on weeknights for Catholic Youth Organization meetings. Their parents were married in St. Pius. Adrienne has always kept a place in her heart for the city. Her longtime awareness of the city and her keen knowledge of the county help us keep hope alive for some regional government. Hope springs eternal. And significantly, her great awareness of and experience with state issues and concerns will serve all Marylanders exceedingly well.

Finally, the Sun editorial unfairly questions Adrienne’s ability to be forceful while praising her listening skills. She is both effective and capable of hearing her colleagues, I understand. Adrienne Jones, if elected, will make an outstanding speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates. It is her turn. She has earned it and Maryland deserves more of her gracefully dignified and powerful service at the very top.

Ralph E. Moore Jr., Baltimore

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