Charley has just written one of the best posts ever on BMG. Read it.
I have a couple of related thoughts to add.
First: remember what MaverickDem posted a while back about why the tax rollback issue is so important, and how it goes WAY beyond the taxpayers getting that extra 0.3% in their pockets? This is exactly what that post was about. Not only do voters not trust their government, they have good reason not to trust their government. Right now, it feels like everything we have been told about the Big Dig for not only the last 16 years of Republican leadership, but let’s face it, ever since this project was conceived by Fred Salvucci and Mike Dukakis decades ago, has been a lie. That’s a bitter pill for voters to swallow. They are – I am – angry, and rightfully so.
Second: maybe it’s unseemly to get partisan about this right now, but here goes. Since 1991 – which is when most of the Big Dig construction has occurred – Republicans have been running the show. Yes, there has been an overwhelmingly Democratic legislature in all that time. But the Governor appoints the Turnpike Authority board members and the Highway Commissioner, as well as the head of every other state agency. Legislators don’t make appointments. Every decision made by the Turnpike Authority, the Public Works Commissioner, or whoever was running the Big Dig over the last 16 years, every state inspector who failed to do his or her job, every failure to supervise outside contractors, all of that stuff can be traced directly back to one of four people: Bill Weld, Paul Cellucci, Jane Swift, or Mitt Romney. The Republicans have been managing this project for 16 years, and they must be held accountable for that. If you needed a reminder, here’s a Globe story about Jim Kerasiotes, brought in by Bill Weld to manage the Big Dig, who was eventually forced to resign in disgrace following revelations of cost overruns and management failures, after years of assuring everyone that the project was “on time and on budget,” and intimidating anyone who dared question him into silence.