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Van Hollen is well-prepared for Senate

As a sophomore in college and a member of the student government at St. Mary's College of Maryland, I am always pondering ways to make college more affordable in our state. This is a critical issue and partly informs who I will be supporting for the United States Senate in this year's election.

I would like to know that the person I support will push innovative ideas in support of college affordability, fulfill campaign promises and understand the complicated procedures of the U.S. Senate to deliver effective results.

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For more than a decade, Rep. Chris Van Hollen has fought for not just his constituents in the 8th Congressional District, but all Marylanders in the U.S. House of Representatives. He is the candidate who will hit the ground flying if elected as our next U.S. Senator ("Edwards, Van Hollen clash in first Senate debates," March 18).

I met with Mr. Van Hollen last year to discuss important after-school priorities and federal funding for higher education. Although I emailed him only a few days before I was coming to Washington, his office responded to me within a couple hours to place me on his calendar which he rearranged to meet with me. Not many members of Congress are known to do that. In our meeting, he explained the complex processes of the budget committee and shared with me the different versions of the budget proposals, one from the Democrats, one from the Republicans and another from the Congressional Black Caucus.

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Mr. Van Hollen has proven that he'll foster relationships to be successful and effective in Congress. He has demonstrated his leadership in the House and I believe he'll be able to do the same in the Senate. He is the type of senator Maryland will need to replace Barbara Mikulski, who has been our champion for nearly 30 years. Mr. Van Hollen will continue to be a leader in Congress and champion important issues for Marylanders. He recognizes the importance of college affordability and that every young person must have the opportunity to attend college.

The congressman knows that Marylanders want thoughtful and effective leadership. Behind his calm is an impatience to get results for our state. Chris has proven that he knows how to bring us together economically and by example. I could not be more proud as a Marylander and as a Democrat to support him for the U.S. Senate.

Cody L. Dorsey, Baltimore

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