Alabama: Sewell discusses HBCU order. US Rep. Terri Sewell (D) issued a statement on President Trump’s executive order transferring the White House Initiative on historically black universities and colleges (HBCUs) to the direct authority of the White House and requiring federal agencies to include more HBCUs in federal programs. “While I am encouraged that the president made a special effort to reach out to HBCU leaders, the proof of his commitment is in his willingness to provide the critical funding needed to sustain these institutions,” which so far has not been forthcoming ……. Kentucky: Beshear responds to Trump speech. By choosing former Bluegrass State governor Steve Beshear, complete with a Kentucky accent, to deliver the Democratic response to President Trump’s address to Congress, the Democrats evidenced a desire to move the party in a moderate though populist direction. Beshear, in a later fundraising email, said that the Democrats’ policies “are the ones that make a difference in the lives of the greatest number of people in this country – not just the 1% who stand to benefit from Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell, and Paul Ryan’s plans.” ……. Florida: Gillum announces for governor. Andrew Gillum, the mayor of Tallahassee, announced yesterday that he is running for the Democratic nomination for governor. Gillum, 37, is African-American. One of his key themes is a good public education system …….