GOOD MORNING, MASSACHUSETTS.
WILL DEVAL DO IT? — We’ve entered day three of speculation about former Gov. Deval Patrick’s future plans. Will he run for president? Will he decide against it for a second time this cycle? Why did he pull out of speaking at a conference in Colorado at the last minute?
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While we ask all the questions about Patrick and his presidential ambitions, there’s one Bay Stater who might have to address them: Sen. Elizabeth Warren. When Warren registers for the New Hampshire primary ballot in Concord today, it’s likely she will get a question or two about Patrick‘s intentions.
Warren and Patrick have a friendly relationship. They’ve shared donors and political consultants over the years, and Patrick gave $5,000 to Warren’s Senate campaign in 2018. But Patrick’s eleventh-hour entry into the race could complicate things for her.
One key point of tension between the two Democrats could surface if he runs for president. Patrick works at Bain Capital, the same firm that was vilified by Democrats in the 2012 election, while Warren has railed against the private equity industry on the campaign trail.
“While Warren hasn’t gone after any of her current opponents, she didn’t waste any time going after Bloomberg, painting him as the personification of why she’s running against Wall Street and billionaires,” Dewey Square Group principal Mary Anne Marsh told me yesterday. “So, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Warren went after Patrick and his tenure at Bain, as well as other corporate posts, to define him before he has the chance to define himself.”
As everyone scrambles over Patrick’s presidential plans, remember it’s not uncommon for the political class to seek out new candidates at this stage in the race. Here’s a question a source posed to me yesterday: Rob Gronkowski retired and sat out for the regular season games, but now Bob Kraft wants him back for the playoffs. In that same vein, could Patrick pull off sitting out the year-long primary campaign slog and be effective in shaking things up at the very end? We are likely to know by Friday, which is the final day to file for the primary ballot in New Hampshire.
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TODAY — Boston Mayor Marty Walsh travels to Washington, D.C., for the 2019 Corporate Citizenship Conference presented by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. The House meets in formal session. Attorney General Maura Healey attends a Greater Boston Food Bank summit. Presidential candidate Tom Steyer speaks with WGBH at the Boston Public Library. Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera is a guest on WGBH. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former Gov. Bill Weld file for the New Hampshire primary ballot in Concord.
– “In Mass., white pols dominate state and local politics,” by Andy Metzger, CommonWealth Magazine: “THE PREDOMINANCE OF white male politicians in positions of power in Massachusetts may be a symptom of the way elections are run, according to a report released Wednesday entitled MassForward. The report that finds a lack of representation in state and local government recommends reforms big and small, from relieving legislative staffers from the often grueling work of constituent services to completely reconfiguring the election calendar. “The time is right to mount a comprehensive campaign to increase civic engagement and achieve balanced representation,” said the report, which was put together by the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University and MassINC, the nonprofit parent of CommonWealth.”
– “Public health advocates cheer House’s proposed flavored tobacco ban, despite warnings about black market sales,” by Shira Schoenberg, Springfield Republican: “Public health advocates on Tuesday cheered the emergence of a House bill that would ban the sale of flavored tobacco products and tax e-cigarettes, despite warnings by some with ties to the industry that a ban could lead to a larger black market. “There’s two factors that primarily influence whether kids use tobacco — one is the availability of flavors and the other is price,” said Kevin O’Flaherty, director of advocacy for the Northeast region of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.”
– “Non-binary gender designation is now available on Mass. licenses,” by Danny McDonald, Boston Globe: “Massachusetts residents can now choose a non-binary gender designation on state driver’s licenses, according to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. The change took effect on Tuesday as part of the state’s Registry of Motor Vehicles system upgrade. The agency said the RMV will now recognize three gender designation options: “male,” “female,” and “non-binary.” Those options are available for new credentials, renewals and amendments of licenses and IDs, according to MassDOT.”
– “Cusack: Revenue Package “Hard to Build” Without Gas Tax Hike,” by Katie Lannan, State House News Service: “With a vote possible in the House next week on a transportation revenue bill, the details of such a package remain in development and its possible components include measures dealing with the gas tax and ride-share fees. “Still looking at it,” Rep. Mark Cusack, the House chair of the Revenue Committee, told the News Service Tuesday when asked for a status update on the long-awaited bill.”
– “Massachusetts’ First Lady Lauren Baker kicks off winter drive for vulnerable children,” by Douglas Hook, MassLive.com: “Massachusetts’ First Lady Lauren Baker arrived in Holyoke today as part of a winter drive to provide comfort and dignity to children in traumatic situations and enrich childhoods that have been impacted by abuse and neglect. Bean Restaurant Group announced today that The Student Prince has partnered with PeoplesBank in support of the Wonderfund 2019 Holiday Gift Drive. The Pioneer Valley Committee is being led by Co-Chairs Andy Yee, owner of the Bean Restaurant Group and First Vice President Human Resources Christine Phillips of PeoplesBank.”
– “‘Conrad’s Law’ Pitched as Way to Avert Tragedies,” by Chris Lisinski, State House News Service: “Massachusetts is one of only eight states without a statute explicitly criminalizing coercion of suicide, a gap that lawmakers hope to close in the wake of high-profile cases. A bill discussed before the Judiciary Committee on Tuesday would create a new charge for intentionally encouraging or enabling a suicide attempt, punishable by up to five years imprisonment. Authors and supporters dubbed the legislation “Conrad’s Law” in reference to Conrad Roy, a Massachusetts teen who died by suicide in 2014 following repeated encouragement from his girlfriend, Michelle Carter.”
– “Boston needs better pedestrian safety strategy, council president says,” by Sean Philip Cotter, Boston Herald: “The city needs to add more traffic-safety resources and adopt a better strategy for making neighborhood streets safer, City Council President Andrea Campbell says — after a car struck a child in her district last week. “We need to face the reality that people are dying not only from gunshots but also being maimed and being killed by vehicles,” Campbell told the Herald. “We need to do something.” She said the city needs to shift resources over to the Boston Transportation Department’s traffic-safety division. Campbell said the BTD’s much-ballyhooed Slow Streets program, which focuses on solutions on a block-by-block basis, works very well for the 12 neighborhoods selected, including five in her district.”
– “City health commission director stepping down,” by Milton J. Valencia, Boston Globe: “After nearly four years in the post, the head of the city’s health commission is stepping down, saying she wants to spend more time with her family. Monica Valdes Lupi, who took the job in early 2016, briefed her staff earlier this month and alerted the City Council in an e-mail last week. She said she is stepping down at the end of the month and said she was humbled by her work for several years in the Boston Public Health Commission, the last three as director.”
– “Is Emerson College the Smartest Developer in Town?” by Thomas Stackpole, Boston Magazine: “I was walking along the Common earlier this month and caught myself pausing for a moment, blinking at the intersection of Tremont and Boylston and wondering what, exactly, felt so different. For the past decade or so, the intersection has been a warren of scaffolding, torn up by jackhammers and clogged with construction, and suddenly the dust has started to clear. But while most other construction projects—and there are a ton of them in Boston right now—seem to yield towering glass boxes, this one looks, well, a lot like Boston, only maybe a bit nicer.”
– “Deval Patrick bid would ‘complicate Elizabeth Warren’s life,’” by Stephanie Murray and Alex Thompson, POLITICO: “When Elizabeth Warren was asked to name three African Americans she’d choose for her presidential cabinet last week, she pointed to her friend Deval Patrick as one of them. But the former Massachusetts governor had other ideas. Around the same time, the former governor and a handful of close allies were huddling not far from Warren’s campaign headquarters, plotting a surprise entry into the Democratic primary. The now-public prospect of his candidacy — and its potential effect on Warren, who has recently emerged as a Democratic frontrunner — is suddenly the subject of intense speculation among the Massachusetts political class.”
– “Michael Bloomberg, Deval Patrick blindside Dem primary field,” by Marc Caputo and David Siders, POLITICO: “The center of the Democratic Party is throwing a fit. The party’s moderate wing has suddenly produced back-to-back threats of Michael Bloomberg and Deval Patrick entering the presidential primary, revealing its determination to have an imposing presence in a race shaped by unrestrained liberal policy prescriptions and candidates. The two potential candidates are expressions of the deep concern voiced by Democratic Party insiders and donors that the moderate frontrunner in the race, Joe Biden, is flawed and in danger of losing to a progressive alternative, Sen. Elizabeth Warren.”
– “Jane Swift says she is ‘running’ — but not for president,” by Nik DeCosta-Klipa, Boston.com: “The news that former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick is seriously mulling a late entrance into the Democratic presidential primary could give former Gov. Jane Swift unique status. And not because of what she did as governor, but because of what she hasn’t done after. Swift, who served for the remainder of the late Gov. Paul Celluci’s term from 2001 to 2003, would become the only living former Massachusetts governor who hasn’t run for president, if Patrick does indeed run.”
– “Deval Patrick wants to run for president. What in the world was he thinking?” by Nestor Ramos, Boston Globe: ““God, grant me the confidence of a pulse-having politician from Massachusetts, where anybody who’s ever wrangled 8,000 votes in an uncontested race in North Attleborough is secretly convinced that they ought to be president. Ted Kennedy, Michael Dukakis, Paul Tsongas, John Kerry, Mitt Romney, Jill Stein, Jill Stein again, Seth Moulton . . . Welcome to Massachusetts, here’s your Charlie Card and your paperwork to get on the ballot in New Hampshire. In the 2020 race, both major parties have a Massachusetts option: Elizabeth Warren, of course, and Bill Weld, who is “running” for the Republican nomination the way I “run” on the treadmill after lunch at Mr. Bartley’s.”
– “Liss-Riordan To Snooker Kennedy And Markey With Call For Campaign Spending Cap,” by David Bernstein, WGBH News: “As Rep. Joe Kennedy III and Sen. Ed Markey dig into their epic, scorched-earth primary battle, both have treated the third Democratic candidate, attorney Shannon Liss-Riordan, as little more than a prop. Just last week, each side used her as an ally of convenience. Kennedy happily used her agreement on a so-called Peoples Pledge to emphasize Markey’s reticence to limit outside spending on the election. Markey just as eagerly used her presence at a climate debate to highlight Kennedy’s absence. She’s about to turn the tables on both of them.”
– “PEABODY MAYOR BETTENCOURT ENDORSES KENNEDY FOR U.S. SENATE,” from the Kennedy campaign: “Peabody Mayor Ted Bettencourt endorsed Congressman Joe Kennedy III in his bid to join the United States Senate. “Congressman Kennedy has shown himself to be a present and engaged leader here in the Commonwealth,” said Mayor Bettencourt.”
– “350 Action Endorses Mayor Alex Morse for Congress,” from the Morse campaign: “Congressional candidate Mayor Alex Morse was endorsed by 350 Action, a national organization dedicated to driving transformative political action on the climate crisis. Along with Morse, 350 Action also announced its support today for leading progressive challengers Jessica Cisneros in TX-28 and Jamaal Bowman in NY-16 as part of the group’s first three endorsements of the 2020 election cycle.”
– “House hit as authoritarian, top-down organization,” by Becca Glenn, Jazmin West, Joe Rich, Mohammed Missouri, Barbara Madeloni, Katie Hayden, Liza Ryan and Phillip Sego, CommonWealth Magazine: “As legislative staffers, lobbyists, and grassroots advocates, we’ve collectively attended thousands of meetings with members of the Massachusetts House of Representatives and been at the center of dozens of issue campaigns. Recently Commonwealth reported on former representative Jay Kaufman’s recollection of his experience as a member of the House. The assertion by Speaker Robert DeLeo that Kaufman is lying about DeLeo’s leadership style made us laugh out loud. What Kaufman described has been standard operating procedure in the House for as long as any of us can remember.”
– “Which Massachusetts cities had the most expensive mayoral races in 2019?” by Stephanie Barry, Springfield Republican: “Revere Mayor Brian Arrigo topped statewide campaign spending to retain his seat in the latest election cycle, while the city of Springfield ranked 10th in overall expenditures for mayoral races. Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno spent nearly $94,000 to become the city’s longest-serving mayor, according to the Office of Campaign and Political Finance. The five-term mayor dwarfed fundraising and spending totals for his opponent in the general election, records show — Sarno’s expenditures came in at $93,463 while Yolanda Cancel, a neighborhood activist and political neophyte, raised $4,134 and spent $3,547.”
– “Warren’s days at Rutgers and Penn,” by Jonathan Tamari, Philadelphia Inquirer: “As professor Diana Sclar sat with a young Elizabeth Warren over lunch one day at Rutgers Law School in Newark, Warren said something surprising. She called herself a “political conservative.” That was a rare sentiment in the early 1970s at Rutgers, where Warren, a 24-year-old mother raised in Oklahoma, had stepped into a cauldron of liberal activity. In the North Jersey city still reeling from unrest, students called it “the People’s Electric Law School” and they treated authority with irreverence, or disdain.”
– “Rep. Katherine Clark, local DACA recipients speak out as Supreme Court hears arguments on the immigration program,” by Dialynn Dwyer, Boston.com: “While the U.S. Supreme Court started hearing oral arguments Tuesday on whether the Trump administration acted lawfully when it moved to wind down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, recipients of the program gathered with immigrant rights advocates in Cambridge to urge Congress to act on meaningful reforms. In Massachusetts, more than 8,000 immigrants have benefited from the program, DACA, since its creation by former president Barack Obama in 2012, and an estimated 5,600 are still enrolled in the Bay State, according to the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy (MIRA) Coalition.”
– “Cannabis Control Commission issues a quarantine on cannabis vaping products, does not apply to marijuana flower vapes,” by Tanner Stening, MassLive.com: “The Cannabis Control Commission moved to quarantine THC-based vape products on Tuesday — the day Gov. Charlie Baker’s vape ban on medical marijuana vape products was set to lift. The Commission plans to quarantine all “devices that rely on vaporization or aerosolization, including, but not limited to, vape pens, vape cartridges, aerosol products and inhalers, in order to protect the public health, safety, and welfare of the citizens of Massachusetts,” according to a quarantine order issued ahead of the lifting of the ban.”
— Herald: “COURTHOUSE BLUES,” — Globe: “Democrats say Patrick would face a daunting task,” “DACA appears to be at risk in court,” “THE CASE TO IMPEACH FOR ALL TO HEAR.”
– “Mass. Has The First Jail In The Country That’s Also A Licensed Methadone Treatment Provider,” by Deborah Becker, WBUR: “It’s 7 a.m. in the library of the Franklin County Jail, and nurse Jennifer Maillet is preparing addiction medications for eight men. She mixes methadone with water and crushes buprenorphine. She puts the medication in each man’s mouth as correctional officers stand watch. Every five minutes, Maillet checks each mouth with a flashlight. After three checks the men are taken to a washroom to rinse their mouths, eat a Saltine cracker, rinse again, and wash their hands. Methadone and Suboxone (the brand name for buprenorphine) ease opioid cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Forty-four of the estimated 200 people incarcerated at the Frankin County facility receive addiction medications on this day.”
– “Compressor station project gets final state approval,” by Jessica Trufant, The Patriot Ledger: “The town lost a key battle in a several years-long war against a proposed 7,700-horsepower natural gas compressor station on Tuesday when state regulators gave the project the green light in the final step of the state approval process. The Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management on Tuesday issued its decision that the project is consistent with the federal Coastal Zone Management Act. That approval is the last of four that the project needs, and has received, from the state.”
– “Newton Teachers Union ‘Having Conversations’ About Striking Amid Contract Negotiations,” by Tori Bedford, WGBH News: “Members of the Newton Teachers Association are “having conversations” about a possible strike, as union members grow increasingly frustrated at the pace of ongoing negotiations, Association President Michael Zilles said on Tuesday. Striking is “a conversation that’s happening in the buildings amongst members, certainly,” Zilles said, though he emphasized that it would be a last-resort option. “You don’t go on strike until you stop making progress at the table, and so we’re still making progress at the table. But it is very slow.” School Committee Chair Ruth Goldman said after 15 months of negotiations, the school department and the 2,200 union members are “nearing the end and making good progress” on contract negotiations.”
– “Kate Lipper-Garabedian Announces State Representative Run,” by Mike Carraggi, Patch: “Kate Lipper-Garabedian, fresh off a landslide re-election to the Melrose City Council, announced her intentions to run for the state representative seat soon to be vacated by the city’s incoming mayor. She is the first to publicly announce her intentions to run for Paul Brodeur’s seat in the 32d Middlesex District. Multiple officials in Melrose have privately weighed running but wanted to see how the field played out. Lipper-Garabedian, buoyed by a re-election to her at-large seat that saw her receive just 215 fewer votes of Brodeur himself, wasted little time.”
– Nicole Dungca joins The Washington Post as a reporter in the paper’s investigative unit. Dungca comes to the paper from the Boston Globe Spotlight Team. Link.
TRANSITIONS – UMass President Marty Meehan was appointed to a three-year term on the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities Board of Directors.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY – to Gov. Charlie Baker, who is 63; NECN’s Sue O’Connell; Sudbury state Rep. Carmine Gentile, and POLITICO alum Jonathan Topaz, now a Skadden Fellow staff attorney for the ACLU Voting Rights Project.
DID THE HOME TEAM WIN? No! The Panthers beat the Bruins 5-4.
FOR YOUR COMMUTE: PAC It Up, PAC It In– On this week’s Horse Race podcast, hosts Stephanie Murray and Jennifer Smith break down the 2019 municipal elections. Boston Business Journal digital editor Gintautas Dumcius talks about how candidates backed by the Massachusetts Majority Super PAC performed in local elections, and Coalition for Safe and Secure Data spokesperson Conor Yunits discusses a “Right to Repair” ballot question that could be coming down the pike. Subscribe and listen on iTunes and Sound Cloud.
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