Kentucky, Mass. Students Discuss Role of Legislative Committees

Feb. 25, 2019 

Brandeis University and University of Louisville ENACT students participated in a conversation with Massachusetts state Sen. and Senate Pro Tempore Will Brownsberger (D-Suffolk/Middlesex) regarding the role of committees in the legislative process. The students in Kentucky joined the class, which took place at Brandeis, live via Zoom-based video conference.

Brownsberger spoke about how he became engaged with state politics, and his career as a legislator, including having served as a member of the Massachusetts State House of Representatives prior to his election as a state senator.

As chair of the Senate Committee on Redistricting and vice chair of the Joint Committee on Revenue, Brownsberger is acutely in tune with the nuances of the committee system. He conveyed his vast knowledge of Massachusetts Senate committees and their effects on the legislative process.

Students had the opportunity to ask Brownsberger about his experience with the legislative process, best practices for engaging with legislators, and effective advocacy techniques that take into account the realities of the packed schedule of legislative committees.

Students in ENACT Faculty Fellow Jason Gainous ENACT course at the University of Louisville are interning at the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort. They asked Brownsberger about the Massachusetts experience with legalizing medical and more recently recreational marijuana, and compared the political climates on that issue in Massachusetts and Kentucky.