Galluccio Out of the Race

The Herald reports:

Cambridge city councilor Anthony Galluccio abruptly dropped out the race for state senate today, saying he wanted to avoid a “divisive” battle with Sen. Jarrett Barrios.

Galluccio, a former Cambridge mayor, denied that recent revelations about a pair of drunk driving convictions and a suspicious late-night crash in December were a factor in his decision.

I’m not very surprised, I’ve been at least half-expecting this ever since Barrios decided to run for re-election.  We can speculate about whether or not the car crash was “a factor” in his decision, but I would’ve had the same expectation even if he’d been completely exonerated with no further suspicion.

We’ve had a fascinating season of phantom elections here in Middlesex County this winter…

We started out with four candidates for Middlesex DA, one of whom was opening up a state rep seat in Melrose, and the other opening a state senate seat.  Initially, three candidates were going to run for that senate seat, one of them opening up a state rep seat in Cambridge.  Two of them were Cambridge city councilors, leading to the high likelihood that we’d have an open seat on the council for next year’s election.  And candidates were beginning to line up for the state rep seats in Melrose and Cambridge, waiting for the official announcements.

Supporters began to line up behind candidates, and activists looked on with hope and fear and the many opportunities but also the prospect of so many campaigns all at once to demand their time :)

And then, one by one, candidates dropped out, or decided not to run for higher office.  And now we’re left with all of the legislators involved in this drama running for re-election to their current seats, unopposed, one candidate for DA, and the high likelihood of all 9 incumbents on the Cambridge City Council staying put.  All of the decisions have been made, and we didn’t even have a primary, or a caucus.

That doesn’t quite mean democracy didn’t happen.  The candidates campaigned, raised money, spoke to citizens groups, and courted the support of activists.  People got involved, and their involvement affected candidates’ prospects, and their decisions.  All in all, though, it’s quite the anticlimax!

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16 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. exoneration and suspicion

    A friend points out to me that Galluccio was exonerated, and I agree with him as far as what we know about the facts of the case.  The political situation, though, is that there's still suspicion, and we could still speculate about whether that was a factor in his decision.  Personally I don't think it was a major factor, but I don't really know.

    • Galluccio was not exonerated

      Galluccio was not exonerated, he was simply not charged. Using a double standard befitting a highly political show cause hearing, the magistrate decided to consider the credibility of five independent witnesses, which is the role of the judge or jury. Strangely, he found all of them incredible, including an EMT who recorded in his notes that Galluccio was alcohol impaired. This was not a trial, it was a behind-closed-doors bag job. Exoneration comes from a trial, which will never happen.

      These charges had nothing to do with him dropping out of the race? My arse they didn't! I gather he was going to lose anyway, but the drunk driving issue was never going away, and it was an anchor on the candidate.

      As for the drunk driving, let's hope Mr. Galluccio finds the time to get some help for his obviously serious problem. I sincerely wish him the best if he makes an effort to get that help.

      • not from what I hear

        It's hard to find objective sources about this, since pretty much everyone who was at the hearing and writes about it in public either a) doesn't provide much info, or b) was one of the participants, with a strong bias.  But what I hear is that the witnesses contradicted themselves on several points, and the cop testified that all of them seemed more drunk than Galluccio on the night of the accident.  The magistrate found none of the witnesses credible enough to be worth going to trial.  Lots of people claim that he made an improper decision, but from where I sit, I don't see why they're any more credible than he is.  So in my mind, he's exonerated.

        That doesn't mean I won't support his opponents in the city council election next year :)  Last year I worked for a city council candidate Galluccio was overheard saying would "get on the council over my dead body".  Politically, Galluccio and I will likely find ourselves on the opposite sides of elections again.  But I do think he was exonerated in this case.

        • whoa, whoa, WHOA

          If a police officer testified that I was more drunk than Galluccio, I'd have a SERIOUS problem with it, since the police officer at the scene a). didn't pay me a lick of attention and was interested only in talking to the actual drivers of the cars (I was a passenger), and b.) testified in the hearing that Galluccion was "irate" at the hospital and needed to be told to settle down.  "Irate."  He'd just slammed into three cars at a stop light.  What was HE irate about?  Do sober guys get irate when they cause accidents?

          You know what else really gets me?  The idea that the people that were witnesses against Anthony had some sort of political bias against him.  His attorney accused me of that in the hearing, and asked me if I was "enjoying my new-found fame."  Are you kidding?  OF COURSE I'm motivated to testify against him.  I was the victim!  I honestly had no idea who he was even after the accident.  I couldn't care less about Cambridge politics (at least, that USED to be true.)

          It's a real testiment to stupidity that three perfect strangers who were all rear-ended by someone, plus two EMTs, were all found to be not credible when we all said the guy appeared drunk.

          And what you have to understand about WHY the magistrates decision was wrong is that magistrates aren't supposed to be finders-of-fact.  This wasn't a trial.  It was an informal discussion to determine whether ANY evidence existed that would suggest that Galluccio had committed a crime.

          I haven't written about this since the hearing because I want to put it behind me.  But the problem I have with this is the idea that somehow I come off worse than he does when I wasn't the guys who slammed into the back of three stopped cars.

  2. Not to say $quot;I told you so,$quot;

    but guess what!  Of course, I issued that prediction before the drunk driving against Galluccio were dismissed.  But there can hardly be any doubt that people like Senate President Travaglini weren't too psyched about having stuck their neck out for a candidate who ended up nearly being charged with DUI, especially once it turned out that that candidate was running against an incumbent. 

    • complementary opinions

      I've been saying I thought Galluccio would drop out because Barrios was running for re-election, and the accident stuff didn't affect my opinion much.  You've been saying it because of the accident stuff, even before Barrios was running for re-election.  So now we have the outcome we were both expecting, and we can't tell who was right :)

  3. and another thing

    And now he doesn't have to move into the Senate District either!

    • Would he have had to?

      I don't know the laws / rules here, but would Gallucio really have had to move?

      I know that, for the US Congress, Senators and Representatives only need live in the state they're representing. So a Representative could theoretically not live in their district (though I agree they'd probably have a much harder time getting elected if they didn't).

      So: Do MA state Senators and Representatives have to live in the district they represent?

  4. Steve Winslow has also withdrawn

    I saw Steve Winslow this morning, and he told me that he has also withdrawn from this race.

  5. Galluch did a poll ....

    and it sucked for him. Basically the OUI had no real effect. And Barrios leaving the DAs race and suddenly recognizing his district has no real effect either. Most people have no clue. Barrios is now the name they Know and they have no real reason to vote him out of office. And Galluch cxan't give them any.

    Everything we talk about here is too much inside baseball for the average voter.

    Jarrett Barrios is like Daisy Buchannan. He does not care about the people in his wake. He is back where he started from 15 months ago but now a littered trail of former friends dirties his street. Including Festa, Linsky, Galluch, and many others whose names we do not know.

    eb3-fka-ernie-boch-iii   @   Tue 4 Dec 7:00 PM
    • plausible

      Galluch did a poll .... and it sucked for him. Basically the OUI had no real effect. [...] Barrios is now the name they Know and they have no real reason to vote him out of office. And Galluch cxan't give them any.

      I have no idea if you have a source for this and you don't say, so I'll read it as conjecture, but I have to say it's very plausible and squares with what I think.  Once Barrios dropped back into this race, Galluccio's chances collapsed.  If he did any internal polling, he'd have seen that.  Barrios is the incumbent whose name people know, and they have a generally positive impression of him.  To beat him, Galluccio would've needed some message explaining why he's clearly better than Barrios for this job, and I can't imagine what that message would be.  I wouldn't be too surprised if his campaign brainstormed, tested, and figured out the same thing.  Or, maybe they found something they could use, but decided it wasn't worth the cost and/or wasn't a good enough bet.

      • Check it out later, cos

        Cos, if you remember, when the time comes, (I won't) and if you care. You should see a good (4 figures)payment for a polling company by Galluch campaign towards end of this run. Those guys want most money upfront, if not at all. That should help confirm poll. I mentioned the poll in a comment in.08 recently ( before his withdrawel)

        eb3-fka-ernie-boch-iii   @   Tue 4 Dec 7:00 PM
  6. not unexpected, really

    This seems to have been in the works for a while.  On May 8, Progressive Democrats of Somerville met with Congressman Mike Capuano, and someone asked him about this race.  Capuano's advice was to wait and take no immediate action, because something important (but unspecified) was going to happen soon.

    • Didn't Capuano endorse Galluccio?

      • yes

        Yes he endorsed Galluccio when it looked like Barrios was running for DA instead. When Barrios jumped back in, Capuano didn't retract his endorsement, but I don't think he was exactly stumping for Galluccio either. As Ron said, when Capuano was asked about the race, he didn't plug Galluccio -- all he said was "wait".

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