Archive for Deval Patrick

MA Without the Usual Suspects Podcast

Mild apology up front, as our service cut off the podcast just at 30 minutes with no grace. We were still holding forth, but there’s some beef in the bun. Ryan and Mike looked to the strong possibility that Boston mayor may not run and the term-limit certainty that the governor can’t.

We never got to speculating about a possible special election for US Senate if John Kerry gets sucked into an Obama cabinet post.

We had plenty to consider and pontificate about with possible replacements for Mayor Tom Menino and Gov. Deval Patrick. Ryan’s hoping for a Boston dark horse, but Mike figures on a city councilor. They name names. Likewise for governor, we went through some prime suspects and wild cards.

Listen in as we play what-if and who.

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2013-14 What Ifs

We’ll speculate tomorrow. Boston’s mayor might well not run again. MA’s governor can’t by term limits. We’ll muse on those and maybe throw in some punditry on the US Senate seat here.

Join us if you can Tuesday, December 4th at 2:30 Eastern for Without the Usual Suspects. You can always catch the show later at that URL or back here.

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Donkey Time Podcast

We intended to chat up the DNC convention today. Of course, in context, that meant contrasting the Republican one with it, looking at both the content and power of both, and extrapolating the November results.

Every optimistic, Ryan was buoyed. Ever the worrywart, Mike was cautious. However, both agreed that the Obama team won. Romney/(the other) Ryan’s chances to come on strong continue to diminish.

Listen in as we talk about the increased likelihood of a continuation by the POTUS and why.

We also weighed Citizens United’s effects on this election, how the GOP and its millionaire minions may fine-tune their abuse of democracy, and the paths to ridding the process of the shouting corporate/billionaire speech.

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Leisurely DNC Analysis

As threatened last week, we’ll kick around the Dem convention this time. We’ve had the weekend plus to consider.

If you can join us live do so on September 11th, Tuesday, at 2:30 PM Eastern here. The show will be available afterward at that URL, back here at Left Ahead and on our iTunes page.

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O’Connor Ives Podcast

Three-term Newburyport Councilor Kathleen O’Connor Ives joined us to talk about her run for the open MA Senate seat in 1st Essex. She acknowledged it’s a tough field. She wants to beat out two other Democrats in next week’s primary. There are also two unenrolled and two Republicans after the spot.

As her website details, she has staked out specific proposals across a spectrum of issues from the environment to economic redevelopment to public safety to women’s rights to campaign-finance reform. She bristled only once with us, at the mention that one of her opponents likes to portray himself as the progressive in the race. She pointed out that her positions gives her as much right.

Listen in as she speaks to her policies and planks. We covered a wide range of topics, as well as her collaborative style by which she expects to pass legislation. She also differentiated herself from her fellow Dems in the race. For example, she said they stress their executive experience, which she says is not all that useful for a job that would entail understanding policy, parsing proposed legislation and researching. As an environmental lawyer, she thinks she has a leg up here.

Listen in as she presents herself as “not a Pollyanna.” Yet she is relentlessly hopeful and has a clear sense of direction.

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Brian Clinton Governor’s Council Podcast

People forget. Every two years in Massachusetts, they elect eight members of the Governor’s Council. That body has been in the constitution here from colonial days, as in 1629. Yet come election time, many voters are unsure what it’s about.

Today, candidate for an open seat on the body, Brian Clinton joined us to talk up himself and to explain the Council. It’s pretty important. Click below to listen in as he explains its roles, including ruling on qualifications of judges, JP, notaries and such, as well as deciding on pardons and commutations. They meet weekly and only get about $26K for their trouble.

Mike adds a disclaimer. Although they aren’t buddies, he and Clinton live in the same sub-neighborhood, Fairmount Hill of Hyde Park.

Clinton presently is chief of staff for very active Boston City Councilor Rob Consalvo. He would continue that. Check his website for his numerous other activities and credentials. He’s also husband and a dad to two tots.

In addition to describing what he sees as his relevant strengths for the Council, he has ideas. He agreed with Ryan that the Council could use more transparency. That might include televising the hearings. Also as a notary public, he thinks the pro forma renewal of their offices is questionable. He’d like the Council to consider qualifications and for roles such as justices of the peace, making sure the JPs understand MA law, such as same-sex marriage and agree to abide by it.

Unless you’re already an expert on the Council, listen to Clinton’s show.

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Netroots Nation Recap Podcast

The annual progressive convention Netroots Nation just finished — Providence this year. Ryan was there and spoke of what made the strongest impressions.

One session that struck Ryan was on marriage equality efforts at the ballot box. He disagreed with the Maine campaign using primarily straight allies in efforts to win back the right for same-sex marriage. The campaign should be using gay couples and families, he said and wrote.

It’s not the same as being there, close enough, to hit the video. Netroots has a remarkable page with clips of each session, here.

Meanwhile, listen in to today’s show to here Ryan speak of the decline in state and local blogs, which have been so influential in recent elections, and much more.

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Alex Buck Podcast

Not your usual politician, as Alex Buck describes himself, joined us today to pitch his positions and his aims if he becomes Susan Fargo’s replacement in the MA Senate for 3rd Middlesex. He says he tells voters in his front door speech that’s one of his pluses.

He warned us that his campaign site is almost fleshed out, but won’t get his platform and issues for a few more days. Meanwhile, click below to hear his views and goals on a very wide range, from education to taxes to growing our economy to mass transit to the role of government.

Buck layered a masters in public administration from Harvard’s Kennedy School on his mechanical engineering bachelors. He talks about his vision for an economy that educates for and enables the likes of life sciences, biotech and clean energy. He is firmly against giving tax breaks to individual companies (comparing that the mere fertilizer when an industry’s entire environment should foster all companies who enter it or expand in it).

He sees education from all-day kindergarten through public support to keep state colleges affordable to workplace education as pivotal to building and expanding these essential industries. Listen in as he addresses why he thinks we are one of the few places in the country that can pull this off.

This was the fourth in the 3rd Middlesex Senate series. Mara Dolan was the first, Mike Barrett the second, and Joe Kearns Goodwin the third.

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Mike Barrett Podcast

The technology-and-business oriented candidate for 3rd Middlesex MA Senate puts himself out there. Lexington’s Mike Barrett has strong ideas and is as plain spoken as it comes.

He is one of the four Dems running for that nomination to go in November against one of the two Republicans who also want Sen. Susan Fargo’s seat. He was the candidate who announced even before she decided not to run for reelection.

Listen is as Barrett describes his visions for a revitalized Massachusetts, particularly from Worcester East. He had been a state legislator from his Cambridge years (6 in the House and 8 in the Senate). Since, he has run a high-tech related consultancy, with a particular emphasis on health care. He dovetails his sundry experiences into a future that supports our local innovators.

He speaks to how he sees our companies replicating a modern form of boom from the mini-computer era. This would turn our focus from business-to-business (B2B) to more business-to-consumers (B2C), with advances in health care related to IT, computers and even robots. He explains what he sees as growth paths and what the role of government should be.

Barrett is plain also about money. He says he is the candidate not afraid to say where taxes need to go up, and where fees for public services do. He said that waffling on taxes are not good positions for progressives to take.

Listen in as he describes how he thinks he can accomplish is myriad goals. He reminded me several times that he’s an optimist and that he accomplished his goals the last time he was in the General Court.

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Walsh on 2012 Races Podcast

MA Dem Party Chair John Walsh is always funny, always fun and scary smart. He joined us today to talk strategy and prospects for the 2012 elections, but he won’t ever forget early 2010.

He led the commonwealth Dems to sweeping victory in November 2012 while the rest of the nation was awash in GOP fervor. In no small part, that was because he learned from the special-election loss at the start of the year that saw Republican Scott Brown edge Dem Martha Coakley for the US Senate seat. He continues to build on the lessons he learned after that, including conversations with Dem activists and pols.

Chief among those are:

  • start early
  • put resources in the hands of the locals and listen to their judgment

For the first, he knows that it would be disastrous for some party official in Boston to show up five weeks before the election with a new, improved plan for campaigning. Instead, the found that it is at the precinct and ward level where the organizers understand the patterns and trends locally. Communication needs to be both ways bottom to top and top to bottom.

Patrick padI started with my own recurring atonement as illustrated with the attached organizer pad for the 2010 campaign to re-elect Gov. Deval Partrick and Lt. Gov. Tim Murray. When Walsh made it plain that the party strategy centered on activists playing the role of organizers for people they knew, I had no doubt that was a losing plan. As I freely admit, it was instead a winning plan, one that was the foundation for Walsh’s current strategy. While the nation wallowed in red, MA was astonishingly blue, losing only a couple of state representative seats in the reactionary tide. I keep this pad handy to remind me of my pundit fallibility.

Click below to hear John speak of the refined version of keeping and improving on his party’s position. Dems are spreading the word through training and data on possible non-voting party members and party leaners who have not voted in the past two or three Presidentials. Through these vote-builder accounts, local activists can ID those and get them to the polls.

Walsh noted that the difference in that painful special-election defeat was about 50 votes per precinct (“It seemed like much worse,” he told us). Depending on the election (POTUS or not), there can be between 300,000 and 600,000 Dems or leaning Dems among non-voters. For many of those, voting is on their list, but not as high as “brushing teeth and pushing amrs in sweaters” in the case of those with kids. Some are young voters not in the habit yet and others are older voters recently infirm. He sees some of these are candidates for absentee voting.

Others don’t understand the big and small issues in the current contests. In these latter cases, Walsh notes, “When we have voters who don’t get it, it’s our fault.” That’s where he concentrates his work — getting out the vote and making sure Dems know the importance of the issues.

Walsh added that “as much as it pains me to say it,” about 1.1 million MA residents voted for Sarah Palin, largely GOP and unenrolled ones. While 1.9 million smeared the ovals for Joe Biden, the difference per election for Dems is getting them to the polls. Listen in as he describes how the party uses the online voter lists and has gotten 300 town committees trained so far in face-to-face work with those who have not been voting.

For this November, he is well aware that following the Citizens United decision, a disheartening amount of winger ads and other expenditures will target both President Obama and the MA Dem candidate for US Senate. He’s a firm believer that “the only thing that can beat big money” is face-to-face contact, real citizens v. Citizens United. He said that money only “simulates the relationships.”

Beyond the election, he indulged us on the questions at least one US Senate candidate, Marisa DeFranco, raised earlier this month about the process of getting on the ballot. Listen in as he agrees that it can seem arduous to get 10,000 signatures, the 15% of party delegates (around 750) at the June convention to get on the primary ballot. He has the luxury of inheriting the state law and party rules, but added that he’s open to refinements.

This go in November, Walsh is working toward getting an additional 20% to 30% more Dems and leaning Dems to the polls.

~Mike

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