At what point do politicians realize they have political capital they can spend?

Contrast the public pronouncements of  Senator Elizabeth Warren, which  many times pit her against Wall St and the network which caters to Wall St – cnbc, as well as oftentimes the President of her own Party, Barack Obama, as the recent details regarding the rates of student loans demonstrate,contrast all of that, with certain local politicians in Massachusetts, who, while winning local races with nearly 70% of the vote  worry about  about their ‘re-election’,or their status ‘in the leadership’, if they vote for, or are seen as supporting Governor Deval Patrick’s plan to invest in our infrastructure/transportation bill or for frankly ANY progressive measure.

After the contrasting and comparison is completed one cannot help but be left with the impression that Senator Warren is a politician who subscribes to the notion that political capital or influence is not something to be hoarded, or accumulated to just watch grow and to sit there and stagnate to achieve ‘seniority’,  but that it is to be used, to shape events and public opinion; to highlight issues that otherwise would have little attention paid to them.

She has the confidence of her own convictions and it shows.

She appears fearless.

She has earned the accolades which have been coming her way because of her political courage and respectful outspokenness.

How hard is it to speak up for the vast majority of Americans, the vast majority of ALL politicians’ constituents?

How hard is it to speak for those that have no voice?

How hard is it to question and master a subject and reject a meme developed by FAUXNEWS or it’s subsidiary around here : the Boston Herald or Sports Radio?

Senator Warren makes it appear easy – and in making it appear easy she is showing how, I can’t seem to find another word for it: cowardly ~ too many local politicians are in a crucial aspect of their job: the ability to persuade, to push forward with the necessary legislation to move Massachusetts in the direction we know we should be heading.

There are myriad issues that fall under the liberal/progressive umbrella that will be part of the conversation that this blog will highlight in the coming months and I am looking forward to writing about them, as well as reporting upon the reaction that some politicians will no doubt have, to the issues being raised.

 

 

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MA State Dem Committee should consider Kate Donaghue to be next Party Chair

First let me state that I think John Walsh did a great job electing Democrats in Massachusetts and keeping them in office, but his real legacy was exemplifying what it really means to elect people using effective grassroots outreach:neighbor talking to neighbor, welcoming volunteers and speaking on behalf on what it means to be a Democrat.

There is a person in the state who could rival John Walsh in actual outreach efforts by comparing the total number of years and doors knocked upon to elect Democrats in Massachusetts and across America( by way of NH Presidential primaries) and her name is Kate Donaghue.

Kate Donaghue is well known among activists in Massachusetts and while John Walsh has left big shoes to fill – Kate Dongahue may be just the person to turn to as Democrats in Massachusetts head into the ’14 election cycle who mirrors the legacy that John Walsh is leaving the Massachusetts Democratic Party: talking to our neighbors, welcoming all levels of volunteers, and believing in what the Democratic Party stands for with the ability to communicate that to others.

I will be telling my elected State Committee men and women in the Plymouth and Norfork State Senate district to nominate and vote for Kate Donaghue to be the next Chair of the Massachusetts Democratic Party

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MA Democratic Party Issues Convention thoughts and impressions

Lowell is a beautiful city and I am always happy to know that we are heading to a Convention there.

There are great restaurants we enjoy, it’s walk-able, the historic flavor and the preservation of the buildings envelop you, welcome you;the arena where the Convention takes place is named for our late Senator, Paul Tsongas, who is the person largely responsible for historic preservation that one sees.

I highly recommend always going to a Convention the evening before the actual gavel calls delegates to order, because that’s where the chance to see old friends, meet new activists, the ability to meet candidates and form impressions is  easiest rather than the crush of the morning as cars and delegates stream into Lowell’s Tsongas Arena to pick up ‘I’ll pay for my credentials now’ or ‘not received in time’ credentials.

This year was even more key  to get there early, as delegates from all over the Commonwealth got a chance to compare ‘notes’ on the recent campaign that elected Ed Markey as US Senator: I found out rather quickly that our dissatisfied experiences and impressions were not so unique to the South Shore – it’s nice to be validated from beyond the South Shore. I was assured by a high ranking strategist that any campaign they, ‘the high ranking strategist’, worked on in the future would not resemble or interpret  ’grassroots’ the way the Markey Campaign did. I promised to not name this person, but this person was not alone: State Committee people who I spoke to by a margin of 10 to 1 echoed the same impression: they had a bad experience and in ’14 we have to do better.

The candidates were out in force, and it all  seemed to start at Steve Grossman’s event – even candidates for other offices used Steve Grossman’s event at  Athenian Corner on Markey St to ‘kick off’ Friday night pre-Convention: besides Steve Grossman, a man who knows how to make everyone feel welcome at his event( he is a great host) [ he and my husband talked about the Little League team that Grossman's dad's company sponsored in Hull:"Mass Envelope"~my husband grew up in Hull and it was evident that was a nice memory for Steve Grossman who recalled he himself was a 'batboy' in 1953]; I saw candidate for Lt. Gov Steve Kerrigan stride through – and that was the correct optical version – stride, as quickly as a full room would allow ‘striding; Kerrigan did not glad hand or speak to anyone except for very few people within my view that I later found out all happened to be State Committee people. Saw Congressman John Tierney make the rounds as well at Athenian Corner and he  worked the room on the way to the patio( our vantage point were great seats at the bar); Lt. Governor candidate Mike Lake came in next and he couldn’t have offered a more different approach than his ‘opponent’ as he greeted as many delegates as he could, took questions, passed out buttons, chatted – his progress through the restaurant was slow and deliberate.

The Grossman volunteers had set up a table to collect email addresses and volunteer cards so there was bottleneck at the door because it was situated so closely to the door. Soon I saw a primary opponent to Congressman Tierney, Marisa DeFranco, enter Athenian Corner and I wondered if I would see the 2 pass each other – but there was a ‘back way’ to leave the Grossman event,via the patio. so I never did witness that.

Our group decided to go to the next party delegates had been invited to via the Call to Convention Paper: Joe Avellone for Governor’s event, which was literally next to Steve Grossman’s party. Again, a table was set up to collect names and emails. Information about Joe Avellone was put on all tables; food was plentiful and good according to someone who was part of our walking group. We met Congressman Tierney as we were entering and he was exiting and we passed on greetings from a person we serve with on the HDTC  who had gone to law school with Congressman Tierney. He sent his greetings back and was very cordial.

As we left the Avellone event we up to the candidate to introduce ourselves and to thank him for holding the Party. He was very cordial and gracious to us, told us that he would be coming to the South Shore soon and we left with a good impression of him. His staff was outside and asked us whether we enjoyed ourselves and if we had had a chance to meet ‘Joe’ , we said yes and we told them he was very gracious and that we were looking forward to hearing him the next day at the Convention. Sort of a unique way to get feedback for the candidate which I had never experienced before. Simple and effective when you think about it.

Kept travelling down Market St on the way to the Mayor’s Bash at “The Blue Shamrock”: a great live band was playing and I witnessed delegates hitting the dance floor  - conversations became difficult because of the band; the music was good, but talking and sharing impressions are more important on these occasions so we headed to the ‘official’ Welcoming site: UMASS Lowell Inn And Conference Center .This was where Lt Gov candidate Steve Kerrigan was holding his pre-Convention Party – we saw him as we entered but he was engaged in a conversation so we headed over to the buffet table for an assortment of cheeses, crudites and a mixed cold cut and olive platter. While we seated ourselves we met up with Democrats from the Cape and Islands and had a great conversation with them getting their perspective on who had entered the race – their State Senator, Dan Wolf, as well as the state of where we stand going forward politically in the Commonwealth were some of the topics we touched upon. That was a lengthy conversation.

We never managed to meet Steve Kerrigan who was still involved in a long conversation of his own; it was getting ‘late’  for us :around 9:45 pm and we knew we had to be up early to catch the breakfasts at the Tsongas Arena which kicked off at 8am ~ we knew we were not going to be out much longer. We wandered over to the ‘official’ kick-off room in the  facility and we saw the ‘newest’ entrant to the Governor’s race for ’14: State Senator Dan Wolf. We saw as well a person who sits on the HDTC with us, and he is usually a paid staffer for candidates: he spoke glowingly of  Dan Wolf and it was evident he wants to work on his campaign. Another conversation ensued about the imperfections of the Markey campaign, and I was happy to realize not all staffers thought everything was rosy and that there were many ways to improve outreach.

We were introduced to Dan Wolf and he spoke with an intensity about why he was running but he kept saying:’he didn’t want to give away too much of his speech from tomorrow’;he impressed all of our group.

That concluded our evening and we headed back to our hotel with the alarm set for 6am.

We got to the Tsongas Arena in time for the doors opening – made our way to the Don Berwick for Governor breakfast( recognizing that we had not met him the evening before, feeling that in ‘fairness’ we should make a point of attending);he came in, was immediately engaged in a conversation with a delegate which lasted a while then he was pulled away by his staff to enter by a different door to give a short speech which we could not hear a word of because no microphone was available and the room’s acoustics were horrible. We left knowing we would have to wait for his ‘official speech’.

We circled the Arena and signed a number of issue oriented sign up sheets concerning these issues among many: Safe Staffing standards for Nurses, advocating for Sex Education in schools, allowing early educators the right to Unionize, promoting an organization that encourages women Democratic candidates to run for office called”Emerge”, signed up for email notices from the Progressive Democrats of MA and if I have left off any, forgive me.

We decided to try to get into the Dan Wolf for Governor breakfast, and got in just as he was finishing up his remarks using a microphone so all could hear despite being a length of a room away from him( details, details, they make a difference!);his staff gave away toy balsa airplanes which had stickers on the wings proclaiming Dan Wolf for Governor in ’14 – which immediately gets the recipient to recall that Wolf is the Founder of Cape Air. Very clever.

The Convention was gaveled to order on time and speeches were made by the local Lowell officials -like the Mayor who told us – he had come back to being a Democrat – ok?!. Then we heard from Constitutional officers like Governor Deval Patrick, Atty General Martha Coakley( who had a HUGE sign contingent in front of the Tsongas Arena as delegates arrived), and Steve Grossman who couldn’t give a rousing speech of why he was running for Governor, but he highlighted the issues he may run upon: paid family leave and raising the minimum wage. Ed Markey gave a rousing speech thanking activists as well.

We took attendance of delegates – not many of our local South Shore State Reps were in attendance except for  Jim Cantwell and Josh Cutler. Absent: Mayor Sue Kay, State Reps Garrett Bradley, Rhonda Nyman, Jamie Murphy, Bruce Ayers, Tacky Chan, Ron Mariano, State Senator Therese Murray – …etc – more ABSENT than those that were present.

We voted on the platform – very slight modifications were made( amended);Resolutions concerning Climate Change and restoring the important parts of the Voting Act were passed overwhelmingly.

Then the speeches by the candidates started: Don Berwick kicked it off with a biographical video, and then he spoke with a moral tone/imperative that clearly moved delegates – I was one of many that stood after his speech to applaud.

Dan Wolf then took the stage with music blaring – it was an odd juxtaposition to the moral, almost humble note that Berwick had struck. Dan Wolf enlarged upon his announcement video and used literary lyrical visions of a pilot’s perspective – eye on the horizon, carrying the passengers as we embark on a journey. He highlighted his business acumen and his progressive values.

Joe Avellone was the final candidate to speak: he did it all without seeming to use notes or a teleprompter. He clearly is smart – they all are – and he focused on bringing ‘Big Business’ to the state.

We adjourned and every delegate I spoke to OR overheard as we left the Arena were left with the realization that this will be no easy task choosing among these highly qualified candidates – they all impressed us.

There were ‘breakout sessions’ planned to go over issues, techniques, and campaign methods of interest to activists – the descriptions were so good that people had a hard time choosing and then once decided, a hard time finding chairs to sit in because so many delegates stayed to participate in these sessions.

An ‘after party’ was held – but I had been invited to a post Convention Blogger Party which we headed to – it was great re-connecting with fellow bloggers, the food was terrific – wish we could have stayed longer but the South Shore beckoned and my husband had another commitment coming up on Sunday.

We left there convinced that activists will have to have longer ‘meet and greets’ with these candidates to settle upon the one they will ultimately support – but all that can wait until September – enjoy the rest of the summer with all the summer activities the season offers if the weather cooperates.

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Brief respite from politics is coming to an end as activists gear up for MA Democratic Issues Convention in Lowell 7/13

Politics is on the upcoming menu for this weekend in Lowell as delegates and activists gather for the 2013 Massachusetts Democratic Issues Convention to be held on July 13th, 2013.

The ‘action’ really starts the evening before, July 12th, as delegates gather to meet announced candidates and ‘potential’ candidates for the races that will be decided in September of ’14 ( Primary) and in the General Election in November of ’14.

Already a candidate for the ‘Independent’ label was walking the beach at Hingham Harbor on July 6th trying to pass out campaign literature while people tried to grab spots to catch the Fireworks which are set off from Hingham’s Button Island – naturally, me, having a camera ready to capture a family tradition:tailgating the Fireworks, turned into:grab the camera and get a photo of this guy who was introducing himself, saying ‘Hi, I’m running for Governor. Can I give you literature?’ I heard someone say ‘WHAT? You’re running for WHAT?’ he replied ‘Governor. I’m running for Governor. Can I give you my  literature?’ He was told no. Then he and the guy who was holding the sign with his name on it turned around and walked back the way they had come.

Don’t you think it would have been better if he had said ‘I’m so & so, I’m running for Governor’?But he didn’t, and I heard  him approach 2 groups in exactly the same manner.

Oh well.

 

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I watched him for awhile after that and saw that not too many people accepted his literature.

Election overload perhaps?

I think so.

He got ‘rejected’ so many times, he failed to come closer to our group; too bad, because the political junkie that I am, I would have taken it and asked him a few questions – but only a few, as my family is definitely on overload after the election we all went through. We have been enjoying the time off and have put away the campaign material that had been on my dining room table since February for Ed Markey.

As it is, my husband and I are just now starting to gear up for the Issues Convention – we are reading the Platform that was sent after our credentials arrived and we are getting invitations to Parties to meet some of the people running for Governor, Lt.Governor., and we are trying to figure out attire as we watch the weather forecasts ( please, no more 90+* heat!) because this is the latest Convention we have ever been to – dates switched to AFTER the Special General.

So while I may be back in political mode after this weekend, I am going to respect my fellow citizens  and learn from what I observed: there is overload out there. I may form an opinion and write about my impressions, but actively work the following week we get home for a candidate? – uh, no.

Most people want to enjoy what’s left of the summer of ’13 without being confronted with the fact that there are about 400 days before the next Primary election.

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Have touched a campaign nerve; point is, victory doesn’t mean everything went rosy

Clearly my previous blog post touched a nerve: comments here, or on Facebook, or Twitter are either confirming my impression or are extremely defensive and once again echo the insulting tone activist volunteers were subjected to when suggestions were offered concerning what worked in our area ‘below Boston’.

So I think I will enumerate a few particular choice occurrences we activists had to endure from the Coakley remnant~

At the ‘Organizational Meeting for Markey’ held on 3/3/13 at the Weymouth Eagles Hall on RT 53, activists volunteers for Markey( some, like me, had already collected signatures for Ed Markey to ensure his name would be placed on the ballot) were asked to give up 4 hours of their time for a ‘training’ – hard to credit but’s it’s true: 99% of the people in the Hall at that moment had participated in the Warren Campaign, were veterans of other campaigns such as Deval Patrick’s first run for Governor as well as his subsequent re-election effort, Barack Obama’s effort in ’08 or Hillary Clinton’s effort, some had actively participated in Steve Grossman’s campaign for Treasurer, Bill Keating’s run for Congress, never mind all the local races these people had involved themselves in: local State Rep races, such as for Jim Cantwell and Josh Cutler most recently, and local Mayors and Selectman candidates over the years.

4 hours of ‘training’.

Ok – what had happened in 6 months since November of ’12, in which our candidates had won:Warren, Obama et al. that these veteran volunteers needed training for?

Evidently it was the need to be told it was ‘our fault’ that Martha Coakley had lost( the person running this training opened it by telling us he had worked for Coakley and now he was the FD for our Congressional District for Markey);that ‘we’ didn’t ‘work’ hard enough.

Then, it was to be told that some of our towns were ‘throw away towns’ that Markey wasn’t going to win and if he – this person ‘running’ this ‘training’, needed us to go to another town or city to canvas – that’s where we were going.

Clearly we should have snapped to attention at that moment and saluted.

Silly us, we didn’t – we thought perhaps there were things this Coakley remnant might want to learn about OUR region – such as Town Meeting season was approaching and that we would need signs for visibility to be held before VOTERS went into their Town Meetings prior to the Special Primary. And that we had a political organization in place, the SSDC, which could be contacted for more volunteers or for events to be held – a forum perhaps, as we had done for previous races.

Here is where it gets really unbelievable: we weren’t going to do visibilities, at all, not even when hundreds of our fellow citizens ( in Hingham’s case that would be 3000+ VOTERS showed up to attend Town Meeting) could be present because, that’s what the Lynch people were going to be good at – that’s all the Lynch people WERE good at, we were told.

The level of disdain, disparagement of a volunteer activity, was epic.

At least 4 or 5 people from Hingham and Scituate and Weymouth immediately spoke up to try to ‘tell’ this Coakley remnant, now hired by the Markey campaign, that the people attending Town Meeting were exactly the same voters we needed to canvas, were willing to canvas, but the Coakley remnant was adamant: no visibility, no signs – we were going to canvas where, and when, we were told to canvas.

‘When’ became obvious when I attempted to canvas during the week because of circumstances in my life which dictate that time frame: I was repeatedly told no; I canvassed more than twice on separate weekends and then it became obvious my canvas days would end unless I was to be allowed to canvas during the week with another person who preferred that volunteer time frame as well: we were actually told, reluctantly, alright, but, it had to be between 4- 7pm – we replied that our volunteer schedule only allowed for between 10am and 1pm. After much wrangling back and forth we were ‘allowed’ to canvas but the time we did it: 10 am- 1-pm needed to be clearly put on the packet.

I have lived in Hingham all of my life except for college and a brief 2 1/2 year period when I moved to Denver – I know this town – I knew that people would be home and in bigger numbers than are home on weekends.

Sure as shooting: our contact rate was over 50% for the day we canvassed between 10am and 1pm. Better than any weekend I had canvassed for sure.

Have I mentioned how horrible the packets were organized? How it would take 45 minutes to get them into a driveable/walkable order?

Volunteering should never be this hard – and for me, this was the worst in 40 years.

[Here is where I disclose that I have a Political Science degree and that I have been volunteering on campaigns since Gerry Studds was running in the early 70's and that my biggest leap into volunteering was when Kennedy ran against Carter and I spent nearly every weekend traveling from Providence where I went to college, to NH and ME before that Primary  and caucus and then too many subsequent elections and trips to NH to count since then.]

Expect more blogposts about this campaign experience.

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Afraid of this: reading reports that Martha Coakley is considering running for Governor – far too many of her ‘campaign staff’ got hired by Markey

This will be short and sweet.

If Martha Coakley is ‘considering running’ for MA Governor because some of her former campaign staff are ‘giddy’ because they just came off working in the Ed Markey campaign which was ‘successful’, and she’s getting phone calls from some of them saying :’We know how to run a successful campaign now Martha!, Let’s try again, come on! It will be better this time, you’ll see’.

She better not seriously pick up these calls from these jokers – some of the activists on the South Shore had to ‘endure’ remnants of her campaign staff, who, for some totally unknown reason, but most possibly in my opinion it was because this state is in election overload and the truly BEST campaign operatives decided to take a ‘break’ after November of ’12 and the Coakley remnants found themselves with the opportunity to do something that most people who had previously failed so spectacularly seldom get a chance to do: get a  second chance to prove themselves.

A few proved themselves alright – proved again why Martha Coakley lost, and in a few short weeks managed to alienate an entire region South of Boston for Ed Markey.

Ed Markey won despite these ‘remnants’ –  one of which introduced himself as having worked for Coakley at a very early organizational meeting to activists on the South Shore. I could have saved myself a lot of aggravation by walking out of the room at that point, but I believe in Ed Markey , truly like him, and his voting record.

Activists on the South Shore put up with far too much  to put ourselves through that again. Or at least THIS activist did.

If she jumps into this race for Governor and she hires the same people we just had to deal with, this will be an EASY decision for me – I’m volunteering for someone else or I am blogging.

Easiest activist decision I have ever made. Ever.

Martha, there were certain people whose phone number you needed to lose and whose calls you should refuse to take. Permanently.

One more question: why do this Martha? You are a good Attorney General. You could be Attorney General for life – I don’t think I have ever seen an elected position and a person mesh so perfectly. Please stay where you are.

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Quick reflections before longer post on recent MA Special Senate election from a Democratic activist perspective

This will be relatively brief before I write a longer post fleshing out themes for ‘going forward’ in the ‘activist world’ on the South Shore.

We already have political organizations and structures in place on the South Shore i.e. local Democratic Town Committees, the regional South Shore Democratic Caucus, as well as the Plymouth County Democratic League.

When we allow -’guns for hire’, what I call traveling campaign consultants – paid by the campaign of whatever candidate for whatever office they happen to be ‘gunning for’, to come into to this region and in effect , break the political structures already in place, dismiss them, or ignore them, we are only hurting our ourselves, the activists who live here, and the candidates we are volunteering for.

We need to trust ourselves:trust in our knowledge of our own communities, of our region, of what works, of what doesn’t.

We need to listen to the people whose votes we are trying to get: our neighbors. What they respond positively to, we should adopt as an outreach measure, what they don’t like, and tell us repeatedly that they don’t like, we need to drop. After the election is over and the results are recorded, we have to still live here – the ‘political gun for hire’ gets to head off to the next election somewhere over the horizon.

I am speaking for myself only with the next statement: I am getting very tired of the ‘one size fits all’ theme that seems to be developing in the political world.

After this most recent election, I am more convinced than ever that the best way we can advance our ultimate objective: electing Democrats who will most help protect the interests of the vast majority of Americans, is by learning our individual communities inside out and backwards and by using the political structures and organizations that are already in place; we can never allow the SSDC to be ‘split’ into 2 different regions ever again, which is what happened in this election.

This was a statewide office we were voting for~ a US Senator ,- what reason did some political ‘gun for hire’ think it made more sense to organize by Congressional district and ignore the political organizations that are already well-established?

Easy for them, harder for us activists is what happened. It probably looked prettier on a statewide map in the nether regions of campaign headquarters. It ends up being messier:  coming into a region and starting from scratch when it was completely unnecessary. It caused alienation and resistance.

Especially since our region ‘below Boston’ had just been redistricted and many of us are not quite comfortable with the new district lines yet- we were being directed and micromanaged and at the same time ‘told’ what a great ‘grassroots’ effort this all was?

It was annoying to say the least.

And I know I can speak for more than a few activists who felt the same way as I did to feel comfortable using that word in this essay:annoying. Others can pick stronger adjectives for the de-briefing we will have, I am in no doubt of that.

I honestly cannot conceive of a reason to dismantle the organization that has served us well despite the new Congressional lines.

Going forward, with elections for Governor, Lt Gov., as well as the race for the permanent term of the US Senate seat coming up in ’14 – let’s recommit to the organizations that have served us well: the local Town Committees, the SSDC, and the PCDL, and tell these ‘political gun for hires’ that there is no need to -reinvent the campaign wheel, or to create something out of whole cloth.

Expect more remunerations of the June 25th Special Election in upcoming blogposts.

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For Massachusetts Democratic Activists – it’s all politics, all the time:18 days separate Special Senate Election and Democratic State Party Convention

Here in Massachusetts the most important  of all polls to decide the Special Senate race will open across the Commonwealth on the morning of Tuesday June 25th. At 7 am to be precise. They will close at 8pm.

Sometime later that evening we will know who the next US Senator from Massachusetts will be. I don’t think I am telling anyone who cares about politics anything that they don’t already know.

What most people don’t realize:  18 days later , the Massachusetts Democratic  Party will hold it’s Convention, it’s Issues Convention, in Lowell. [Dis-closer - I am a delegate to that Convention]

The most important date however, is 17 days after June 25th – Friday evening July 12th. That’s when candidates for statewide offices will be making the rounds at receptions put on by them, or by attending regional Democratic groups who have planned events, or social gatherings, or at breakfasts the morning of the the 13th prior to the beginning of the Convention.

Have I mentioned that there is a Mayoral race for Boston going on as well?

Can you say election overload?

I can.

I ‘m feeling it.

The Governor’s seat is open and at this moment we have 2 announced candidates on the Democratic side: Don Berwick and Joseph Avellone

Check out this Wikipedia page for the list of ‘Potential’ candidates : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massachusetts_gubernatorial_election,_2014- quite the list.

We will have an ‘Open’ Lt. Governor seat as well in ’14 and we have 2 announced candidates for that office as well: Steve Kerrigan and Mike Lake.

But I would draw your attention back to the “Potential’ list at Wikipedia because if any of those currently ‘incumbent’ statewide office holders such as Treasurer Steve Grossman ,decides to throw his hat into the ring for Governor, then we will have a Treasurer’s race on our hands as well.

17 days to enjoy summer, take a deep breath, go to the Issues Convention, meet some of these office seekers and then decide whether to commit to being a volunteer for a candidate or sit this one out for awhile, say at least the Autumn, and go back into serious blogger mode and intensively observe and report.

Blogging sounds good.

Have I mentioned election overload?

One important election at a time~

Remember to vote AND,  GOTV on June 25th 2013 for Ed Markey for US Senate.

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20 Minutes until last debate for MA Special Senate Election – out of staters can view on c-span 3 @ 7pm EDT

It’s on the local Boston TV Channels at 7 pm and for those political junkies out of state: c-span 3 @ 7 pm

Tune in or be square ….or just a poorly engaged citizen.

Go Ed Markey – we need you in the US Senate

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Still old-fashioned enough around here to appreciate ‘work-horse’ instead of a ‘show-horse’ when it comes to politicians we elect

Why some candidates resonate with voters over others, despite Party identification, is a topic that fascinates many people who avidly follow politics.

I am one of those people.

I was reading a copy of Yankee Magazine while waiting for an appointment recently and got engrossed in an article about an old time Vermonter who used a plow hitched to a horse long after this method was deemed inefficient and then another article about a North Country backwoodsman from NH who lived a hard scrabble life, hunting, selling the pelts, planting enough to get by on the acreage left to him by his family.

I think these articles resonate around here in New England . They capture our interest because we appreciate the work ethic, the toughness, doggedness, and determination to see the job done. Done, and done in an un-flashy manner.

That’s the way we like our politicians, most of them anyway, as well: most people that New Englanders elect and keep re-electing are exactly those type of people – these are the people that see that there is a job that has to get done, they recognize that government is tool to be used to work for the common good, and they want to operate the machinery of government so that it benefits the vast majority of citizens.

It may not be flashy: it’s noticing that a pothole needs fixing, or a park needs mowing, or that someone’s Social Security benefits aren’t arriving on time, that a seawall needs repair, or that broadband needs expanding, that we need to wean ourselves off of fossil fuels.

We don’t seem too receptive to the flashy ‘salesman/politician’ a la Harold Hill, the main character from The Music Man; we’ve been duped once or twice, but we quickly seem to get their measure and then those ‘Harold Hills’ ( aka Mitt Romneys, Scott Browns) get booted out of office and then pretty much get a cold shoulder politically from us:we won’t be duped again.

We value this quality from our politicians – knowledge of current events, good constituent service,a good working knowledge of how government works – the machinery and gears always aimed going forward, not in reverse,working for justice for all, not the few.

The people of Massachusetts have taken the measure of the 2 men running in the Special Senate election  in 2013 and the recent polls reflect that voters are appreciating the ‘work-horse’ : Ed Markey, over the newcomer, Gabriel Gomez, who is seldom without the flashy pilot’s jacket and whom seems as packaged and as put together as the ‘show-horses’ in the ring.

Since the weather has turned warmer and the jacket jettisoned, have you noticed Gomez is seldom without a shirt that has pilots wings on it?

We get it, Gabe….

It’s all you’ve got.

Thanks for your service as a Veteran, Gabe ( Markey is a Veteran as well) , but the voters have taken your measure, and you are a ‘one note Nellie’.

Massachusetts voters want the work-horse.

Massachusetts voters will make Ed Markey the next Senator from Massachusetts

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