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Md. Senate delays vote on transportation secretary at Muse's request

Swaim-Staley.JPGThe Maryland Senate on Friday delayed a vote to confirm Beverley K. Swaim-Staley as Gov. Martin O'Malley's transportation secretary at the request of a Prince George's senator.

Sen. C. Anthony Muse (D-Prince George's) offered no explanation on the Senate floor for seeking the one-week delay and said little afterward in an interview, other than that he and some of his colleagues were trying to work through "some things."

Swaim-Staley was appointed by O'Malley (D) in September and has been serving in an acting capacity pending Senate confirmation. She is the first woman to lead the department and succeeded John D. Porcari, who joined President Obama's administration as deputy transportation secretary.

Other senators have said that a number of black members are using Swaim-Staley's confirmation process to discuss personnel-related issues at the department.

"I understand that certain African-American senators are concerned with progress within the Department of Transportation," Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert) said in an interview. "They've communicated their concerns to the secretary, and they're communicating their concerns to the governor."

Miller said he considers Staim-Staley "imminently qualified" and said her confirmation is not in danger.

There were no concerns raised Monday night, when Swaim-Staley appeared before the Senate Executive Nominations Committee, which unanimously recommended her confirmation to the full Senate.

Porcari and numerous transportation department staff members attended the committee meeting to show their support for Swaim-Staley.

By John Wagner  |  February 19, 2010; 11:36 AM ET
Categories:  General Assembly , John Wagner  
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So much for the "post racial" era OBama was supposed to usher in. Everything is still about race in PG county. Whatever happened to the idea that the best qualified person should get the job?

Posted by: VikingRider | February 19, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Muse should do more preaching at Giant or Safeway.

Posted by: properbostonian1 | February 19, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Umm...he considers her "imminently qualified?" Meaning that she is going to be qualified in the very near future?

Or perhaps Senate President Miller should have been quoted as calling her "EMINENTLY qualified," meaning that her qualifications are high in reputation, rank or esteem.

Darn homophones, they always trip us up.

Posted by: squirrel325 | February 19, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

'Whatever happened to the idea that the best qualified person should get the job? '
Good question, that most likely is the problem as with many of the MD government agency position under O'Malley, don't go to one even qualified for the job. O'Malley has kept with the same practices that he accused his predecessor of giving executive positions to friends regardless of qualifications. Race becomes a factor when introduced by racism.

Posted by: tobmore | February 19, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

muse must be waiting for a donation

Posted by: agwilson1399 | February 20, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Miller said he considers Staim-Staley "imminently qualified" and said her confirmation is not in danger.

Is that, in fact, a direct quote? How about *eminently* qualified?! Me thinks this item needs an eminent editor.

As for Senator Muse, he's one of that pack of naked racists from PG County, trying no doubt to install a new echelon of cronies inside MDOT.

Posted by: RealityCheckerInEffect | February 21, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

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