Maryland's most important politician turns 70 today. Gov. William Donald Schaefer has dominated the state's limelight -- as Baltimore's best mayor and as Maryland's most colorful governor. Once he blows out the candles, though, Mr. Schaefer will likely forego the usual festivities and get back to running the state. That's the Schaefer style.
Few politicians have been so totally dedicated. Mr. Schaefer tends to state functions without letup. There are no nights or weekends off.
The relentless Schaefer drive created Baltimore's renaissance. His first term as governor was filled with triumphs, too. Now a devastating recession has plunged the state into a prolonged budget crisis. It is an anguishing period for Mr. Schaefer, who must preside over painful service cuts and layoffs. But the governor perseveres. He is the ultimate public servant. Regardless of the number of candles on his cake, he won't slow down.
Happy birthday, governor. Today we celebrate your accomplishments -- and your continued success in these difficult economic times.