By Ryan Miner
Alec Ross is a 45-year-old former Baltimore City public school teacher and technology entrepreneur who ran technology policy for then Sen. Barack Obama’s first presidential campaign and later served in the Obama administration.
Now Ross’ name is on the ballot for the first time, and he’s running for governor of Maryland.
A Democrat, Ross grew up in West Virgina’s coal country and later moved to Maryland. Ross put himself through college working on a beer truck and as a midnight janitor.
Ross doesn’t hesitate telling Maryland voters “there’s no blue blood” is his body. His mother, nicknamed “Becky the Barbarian,” made sure that he and his siblings went to college. Ross graduated from Northwestern University in 1994 with a B.A. in history.
After graduating college, Ross moved to Baltimore City to teach 6th grade Social Studies and Language Arts at Booker T. Washington Middle School. He later married “the teacher across the hall,” his wife, Felicity.
In a radio interview with Ryan Miner of A Miner Detail, Ross wasn’t shy about taking on the failures of the Democratic Party.
“I think you have to be honest and find fault with Democrats – when it’s time to do so. The idea that you go to college – you’re a winner; you don’t go to college – you’re a loser is something that I believe has dominated Democratic education policy for the last twenty years. And I think it’s part of why the old base of the Democratic Party – the sort of blue collar folks, the lunch pail Democrats who didn’t necessarily go to college – why they overwhelmingly left the party,” Ross said.
In the same interview, Ross reiterated similar remarks he made last Thursday in Williamsport at the annual Washington County Democratic picnic, in which he referred to the Democratic Party as being elitist.
“The Democratic Party has become a little bit elitist. You know, we’ve become this party of sort of white shirt-red tie Yale elitists, disconnected from the people who we’re meant to serve,” Ross told Miner.
Ross then spoke to President Donald J. Trump’s election victory.
“If you want to understand why Donald Trump won, it’s because a lot of those folks who are stuck in the economy working at or around minimum wage, who didn’t get college degrees, they feel completely disconnected from us right now,” Ross said.
“You know it’s true. We’ve become an elitist party. And we’ve got to reconnect with parts of America and parts of Maryland that we historically have ties but have sort of lost it a little bit.”