Friday, September 10, 2010

MA Primary Picks

For next week's MA Dem primary, the short of it is:

  • Steven Grossman for Treasurer
  • Suzanne M. Bump for Auditor
  • Barney Frank for 4th District U.S. Representative
  • Macdonald K. D'Alessandro for 9th District U.S. Representative
  • Sonia Rosa Chang-Díaz for 2nd Suffolk District Senator
  • Carlos Tony Henriquez for 5th Suffolk District Representative
Of course, this is Boston-centric. That's where I live and what I've been following most closely.

Key offices unaffected by the primary but headed for November 2nd general-election battles include Governor and Secretary of the Commonwealth. Each has multiple contenders, including nominees from Dem and Republican parties.

Here and at Left Ahead!, I and we have covered both and have strong feelings on the importance of the Secretary race. More will come before November.


Grossman has the widest, most specific and farthest reaching vision for the office. He intends to go well beyond the traditional caretaker roll for moneys — pensions, lottery income and the rest. He visualizes making massive, but carefully considered loans and other investments in MA businesses. The goals will be to revitalize our technological and other innovative economic drivers that served us so well from the mini-computer era forward for decades. The state's money can help the state used properly.

The Dem and GOP contenders for the open seat, Stephen J. Murphy and Karyn E. Polito, should each be adequate and suited for the old pre-Great Recession office. Murphy is a super Boston Councilor who thoroughly understands the city's finances. He has a vastly toned down vision of investing the funds. Polito has a traditional, fiduciary-only view of the office, keeping the money as safe as possible. She is also a bit of a one-trick pony, in making far too much of a promise (rich woman that she is) not to take a state pension.

These are tough and demanding times that call for vision. Grossman here.


Bump is by far the most likely to take this office to a higher, more efficient level. She combines high intelligence with great experience and a clear focus. While the potential for this office seems highly overblown in this campaign, it does have the potential for capturing millions in wasted funds. More important, the Auditor should get a fix on agencies and others it can oversee, identifying minor and serious issues in operations. Both as a legislator and then in the current administration's cabinet-level labor post, Bump has proven she understands both management and finance thoroughly.

An amusing take on the office comes from Dem contender Guy Glodis. His literature has a Wild Bill Hickock, clean-up-the-town tone, claiming he has already done this with the Worcester sheriff's office. That's nice theater, as is his odious literature depicting Bump as a criminal for an appearance-0f-conflict ethics violations years ago when she and her husband were treated to dinner by an insurance company. There was no tit for tat, she paid the $600 fine and even posts the finding on her campaign site.

This is a Pee-wee Herman I'm-rubber-and-you're-glue tactic by Glodis, who has far more serious ethics issues. See a nice recap on today's Globe op-ed.

The other Dem is Mike Lake. He is plenty smart, but far too inexperienced and finance savvy for the slot. Put him back in the humidor for some mellowing. He poo-poos the major role of the office in forensics as too reactive and makes vague promises of proactivity that did not convince me.


Frank has a La Rouche follower nipping at his cuffs. Rachel E. Brown advocates a total change in our economic system. Well, good luck with that. Frank, if you please.

In the 9th, D'Alessandro has terrific pluses and incumbent Stephen F. Lynch dreadful minuses. Mac has very clear goals, many of which align with our Congressional delegation in both houses and some of which lead progressively. He'd be a great addition. His stump speech line is the solid, we don't need more Democrats in Congress; we need better Democrats.

Lynch is justifiably under fire for his terrible votes, including wars and war spending that rob MA and the nation's needs, doing his best to derail health reform, solid support for the un-American, anti-freedom PATRIOT Act and more. He has avoided debates and presents tripe equivocations for his votes.

Many say Mac's effort to unseat Lynch is quixotic. I say he is by far the superior candidate.

MA Legislature

Chang-Díaz has already shown herself to have her head and heart in the right places for her constituents. Perhaps as important, she gets consensus and drives key bills to passage. She appears to have a long path of accomplishments ahead of her. She needs to stay in office.

Her opponent, Hassan A. Williams, is fairly conservative as opposed to her progressive bent. He also is often disingenuous. He outrageously claims that Sonia's accomplishments belong to the many who failed in efforts to get CORI reform and other wins. He is either lying or does not understand the job. Either way, he's not the one and she is.

For the 5th District House seat that Marie St. Fleur vacated, Henriquez is by far the best choice. He has, if you pardon the New Age lingo, a holistic view of education, jobs and crime for the gritty Dorchester/Roxbury District. His vision and goals would serve the constituents best.

His primary is heavily contested. Perennial also-rans Althea Garrison (who briefly and ineffectually held the seat) and Roy Owens seem to be bored enough to make quarter-hearted efforts. More seriously, BPS teacher Barry Lawton has a list of union endorsements and is playing strongly to the Cape Verdean voters. He has vague platform planks, featuring lots of generalities and a few specifics like a Cape Verdean community center and pushing a buy-local economic scheme. Where's the beef?

Henriquez has specifics for better education and training, leading to more jobs in the district. He has the plan.

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1 comment:

Ryan said...

It would be a tragic loss to lose Sonia. I hope her opponent trails by double digits.

Bump really is such a no brainer. I can't understand how anyone could come to a different conclusion, so long as they're not part of the Hackocracy and/or blood relations...