UOJCA Hosts Town Hall Forum for Governor Bob Ehrlich with Montgomery County (MD) Orthodox Jewish Community
On the evening of September 10, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations – through its Institute for Public Affairs – hosted a town hall forum for members of Montgomery County, Maryland’s Orthodox Jewish community to hear from and question Hon. Robert Ehrlich – Governor of the State of Maryland. The event was held at the Kemp Mill Synagogue – a UOJCA member congregation.
After being introduced by IPA director Nathan Diament, the Governor opened the discussion by outlining his record of support for the Jewish community and its concerns during the course of his first term in office. Mr. Ehrlich expressed pride in his role as a national leader in securing and disbursing homeland security funds to community institutions – including synagogues and day schools – threatened by terrorism; Mr. Ehrlich described the many initiatives he has undertaken to build close ties and business relationships between Maryland and Israel; and Mr. Ehrlich expressed his continuing support for programs to support families utilizing parochial schools – including secular textbook subsidies and support for bus transportation. On the latter point, the Governor urged the audience to press candidates for the state legislature on these matters as well if any concrete progress is to be made.
A range of broader issues confronting Maryland was discussed as well. These included: funding higher education, Medicare/Medicaid issues, crime and law enforcement issues and Maryland’s economic outlook.
After the forum, Nathan Diament stated:
The Orthodox Union is pleased to have hosted Governor Ehrlich at this community forum. Governor Ehrlich has been very receptive and responsive to the Jewish community’s needs during his tenure and we appreciate his spending time with us to have this exchange of views with community members.
Editors Note: This event constitutes no endorsement of a particular candidate for office. The UOJCA has extended an invitation to gubernatorial candidate Martin O’Malley to host a similar forum in Montgomery County.
Governor Bob Ehrlich of Maryland (center) at the OU-IPA sponsored community town hall meeting with local rabbis and leaders and IPA director Nathan Diament (right).