Friday, April 30, 2010

Treasurer Tweets and Tussle

Who'd a thunk the treasurer race would be the best theater and political fare. So far, it's looking that way in Massachusetts.

State Rep. Karyn Polito and Somerville marketing magnate Steve Grossman are going at it...strongly but still civilly. They swapped tweets and the game (a.k.a. debate challenge) is on!

On her campaign site, she issued a debate call, replete with mild slur against his record and hard slap to state Dems. Apparently she hasn't yet picked up on the fact that he doesn't do nasty. He simply responded to her Twitter flow that he'd love to kick the treasurer can around, that she should choose the day and location.

Karyn may quickly have to adjust to such a nice guy. Consider that initial challenge, including:
Steve is a major fundraiser and leader of the Democratic Party in Massachusetts and nationally. My record is different. I’m a mom, a small business owner, and an independent voice in the Legislature fighting for lower taxes and less spending. I look forward to debating with Steve on who is best suited to act as a watchdog against the excesses of the one-party political machine on Beacon Hill.
Having seen him in action, I figure that she's in trouble immediately if she thinks she can out-family this most family man of pols. Plus, playing the local GOP wheeze of elect-me-or-it's-one-party-dictatorship so early and without cause is not wise.

Moreover, she a loose tweeter as well. For example, in her stream is a reaction to Grossman's powerful statement at his kickoff that he'd be an activist treasurer, using the office and pension funds to keep banks lending to small businesses and to help create jobs. Polito's unfortunate tweet on that reads, "karyn4treasurer I'm not a "social activist" when it comes to managing tax $$. I'm a "fiscal conservative" who seeks highest return 1st. "

That link is to a Boston Herald editorial hitting Grossman for his activist comment. Polito's gratuitous prefix of social is a standard winger trick. Rather than denigrate the ideas and goals, she needs to come up with some of her own.

I'm betting in a debate the Polito/tabloid view will look pretty reactionary and lame in the light of Grossman's strong program to help us out of the recession and financial squeeze from banks.

At the least, Polito may get some help in creating a real platform. The asthenic website has only sizzle, and barely audible sizzle at that, in her Priorities section (no platform, issues or similar yet; priorities reads more like wishes). She throws in the predictable clich├ęd phrases of accountability and transparency, with noting specific. In contrast, Grossman has a fully fleshed out program.

Granted, his is a different view and it should make for a clear choice. She says so far she just wants to take care of the money and be real conservative. He says that even with the safest investments, using them wisely and inspiring banks and employers to earn the right to use it can do a lot more for workers, small business and all of us.

Maybe she has more, but the initial money-in-the-mattress strategy has never been a winner.

By the bye, over at Left Ahead!, Grossman will join us for our weekly show Tuesday at 2:30 PM Eastern.

Tags: , , , , , ,


Ryan said...

Grossman is one of those cautionary tales that the uber-connected aren't always the bad guys or don't have the interests of regular citizens at heart. He's definitely one of the good ones.

Ken Harvey said...

Terrific post, as usual. I think you really capture the essence of Steve Grossman here, as well as the knee-jerk rhetoric of Senator Polito that might occasionally win an election under the perfect storm of circumstances (e.g. Scott Brown)but doesn't make for a lasting political platform.

massmarrier said...

Well, I'm counting on a couple of debates for treasurer. Steve Murphy doesn't seem to have his heart in this, but the differences with Polito are the stuff of good debate...and analysis of the office.