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Potential governors Brown, Gansler to attend bill signing with first lady

Two presumptive gubernatorial candidates next year will meet in Annapolis on Wednesday when Gov. Martin O’Malley signs into law legislation to enable veterans to get credit for their military experience when applying for occupational and professional licenses in Maryland.

Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown and Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler, who have all-but-officially announced campaigns for governor, will join first lady Michelle Obama for the signing of the 2013 Veterans Full Employment Act. Brown, a colonel in the U.S. Army Reserves, lobbied for passage of the bill this past legislative session.

The legislation calls on Maryland public colleges and universities to give academic credit for relevant military training and puts veterans on a faster track for licenses based on their military experience.

Gansler held a more than three-to-one lead over Brown in campaign funds as of Jan. 9, the most recent filing deadline with the Maryland State Board of Elections. Gansler had $5.2 million in the bank compared to Brown’s $1.6 million.

O’Malley, who is constitutionally barred from seeking a third term next year, is weighing a presidential run in 2016.

Obama’s appearance at the signing is part of her Joining Forces initiative, which strives to help service members, veterans and their spouses find jobs.