Source: Lynch is in

A person familiar with Congressman Stephen Lynch’s plans has informed BMG that Lynch will enter the race for John Kerry’s very-soon-to-be-vacant Senate seat.  Lynch plans to make a formal announcement on Thursday afternoon at the Iron Workers’ Hall in Boston.

So we do indeed have ourselves a primary!  Start your engines, folks.

Also worth noting: Lynch indicated some time ago (before Markey’s announcement to that effect) that he would abide by a People’s Pledge, should he enter the race.  So the two leading Democrats are on board with that – excellent news.

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  1. has reserved hall for presser Wednesday

    Boston.com story here.

    US Representative Stephen F. Lynch has reserved the ironworkers union hall in South Boston for a Thursday afternoon announcement that he is running for the Democratic nomination in the special election to fill John F. Kerry’s seat, a person with direct knowledge of the congressman’s decision said Tuesday.

    That person said Lynch has reserved the Local 7 hall on Old Colony Avenue in South Boston for a 3 PM event.

    • Story says Thursday.

      nt

    • Good

      This may be the fire up his ass Markey needed. An anti-choice, anti-gay, pro-war, pro-gun and anti-worker DINOcrat against a sensible progressive. Ed, time to stand up and fight. Also we should start egging credible challengers for his seat now, if he blows his cash on this race we can ice him out of his seat. Any credible State Reps or Senators down there? Diane Patrick perhaps? Bueller?

      • Anti-gay?

        You’re years out of date on that one. Lynch was originally against same-sex marriage, but changed his mind (or “evolved,” if you prefer) well before President Obama did. And he pissed off a bunch of congressional Republicans on a gay rights issue related to D.C. Be against Lynch if you like, but not on this issue.

        • Agreed

          Still anti-choice, though.

          • Also

            Against the final version of the ACA.

            • Give him a chance: Lynch is more progressive than you think

              On ACA, Lynch feels that there was inadequate healthcare cost reform, which is a good point. Lynch has consistently voted against the republican efforts to repeal the ACA, however. With all of his labor support, it took courage to vote against the ACA. Basically, Lynch has the courage of his convictions.

              • I’ve looked into his votes and watched his primary campaign from a few years ago. I would not call him a DINO, but he is no progressive, especially by MA standards.

                I don’t understand his ACA vote. He was against the public option, which Markey (and Capuano) were strongly in favor of. He then claimed that the bill did not do enough control costs. I think that is just wrong, but especially so when he would not support the types of things to make the bill stronger at controlling costs. He may have voted with his convictions, but then his convictions are a bit confused.

                Having the courage of one’s convictions is nice, but when their convictions are bad, that’s a problem.

                These go back a ways and aren’t the most ideal measures, but I think they are instructive. On a number of areas, like labor, Markey and Lynch get the same ratings. On some important areas, they do not.

                NARAL – 100% Markey, 10% Lynch
                HRC – 100% Markey, 88% Lynch
                ACLU – 87% Markey, 50% Lynch
                Christian Coalition – 7% Markey, 46% Lynch
                NRA – F for Markey , C- for Lynch
                NORML gave Markey a “pro-drug reform stance” and Lynch a “hard on drugs” rating

                As far as giving him a chance, no thanks. He’s had plenty of time to prove himself in Congress and I don’t believe he has proven to be worthy of a promotion.

                Why do you prefer him over Markey?

        • So it's OK

          to be anti-gay when there are cheap political points to pick up, but to “evolve” when the whole country’s moving that way anyway? This guy is almost 58 years old. He opposed same-sex marriage for like 56 of those years. This is a guy who won his first office by playing up his Wacko Hurley love in the Southie projects. That’s anti-gay enough for me. Massachusetts needs leaders, not late-to-the-party followers. Not to mention making his name by helping out a bunch of white thugs who spent a year harassing a Latino kid.

          He pissed off Congressional Republicans by happening to side with his own party instead of theirs? He wasn’t willing to thwart the will of DC’s actual residents? Wow, how inspirational. I’m sure none of that had anything to do with designs on higher office from, you know, Massachusetts.

          • All due respect,

            his “evolution” on this issue isn’t much different from Obama’s, and it happened sooner. Like I said upthread, be against Lynch if you like, but not on this issue.

            • I can't speak for Lynch's

              position, but Obama’s evolution was disingenuous. His change of heart was to articulate what he really thought.

            • All due respect

              Obama was a major disappointment on this issue as well.

              I’ll be against Lynch on this issue if I please. This guy won his very first office specifically by exploiting anti-gay feeling to unseat an incumbent in a primary. He then consistently voted for awful anti-gay bills in the legislature, before “evolving” some 15 years later when his eye’s on statewide office and the state doesn’t support his old position. It’s like Tom Tancredo somehow becoming a liberal on immigration, or Ray Flynn deciding he’s pro-choice to win votes. Who would believe that’s genuine?

              Only thing I will say is there are plenty of other issues to oppose Lynch on.

              • Not to mention

                Gay bashing Cheryl Jacques and getting gay bashers like Howie Carr to tactitly back him. But okay, he is not anti-gay marriage but Markey has consistently been the better leader on this issue and thats the choice we are making.

          • To answer your question

            So it’s OK to be anti-gay when there are cheap political points to pick up, but to “evolve” when the whole country’s moving that way anyway?

            Yes. Yes it is. If you refuse to allow recent converts the benefit of their joining your ranks, you only serve to discourage gaining their support in the first place.

            The vote on legislation is a pair of numbers. History doesn’t matter. How we got there doesn’t matter. What matters is the position (the vote!) of the legislators now. If Lynch has evolved, I say bravo. He’s no Harvey Milk on the issue, but he’s on the side of justice and equality regarding gay rights, I say “Welcome to the party Congressman Lynch. I’m glad you joined us.” And I mean it.

            It doesn’t appear that Lynch will be a leader on civil rights for gays. Then again, it doesn’t appear to me that Markey will either. I think that they’d both support any gay rights legislation that has a hope of passing the US Senate, so I’m not sure how it’s anything but a push regarding Mssrs Markey and Lynch with respect to gay rights.

            I’m a Markey guy. It’s easy. I think climate change is the most important long term, broad issue facing humanity, and the United States needs legislative leaders for us to make progress on managing the issue. Markey might move the issue forward; he sure will try. I don’t get the sense that it’s at all a priority for Congressman Lynch.

            All of that written, I’m a little sour on all of the Lynch bashing around here. I want the primary to be a no-low-blows, competitive, and based on positions and rhetoric not slime. I want the winner to come out of the primary energized, not limping. The tone of many posts around here sure as heck doesn’t reflect that climate.

            • I don't think so

              When his political career got started by using this very issue as a wedge, I don’t trust the conversion. He may vote the right way now, but that’s far from settled. How Lynch votes now is to be the only member of the Massachusetts delegation refusing to sign a brief against DOMA. Some evolution.

              Being one of the Lynch critics, I will say this: Tom Finneran being retired, I can’t think of another Massachusetts Democrat for whom I have more antipathy than Steve Lynch. Had Capuano, Tsongas, or even Coakley run in this primary I wouldn’t have much criticism to offer. But this guy has been, from my point of view, on the wrong side of too many important issues.

              I’ve been kind of surprised, and disappointed, that such feelings seem to be so rare at BMG.

      • Robert Kennedy

        Here is what RFK said about extremists:

        “What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.”

        We should not be calling Steve Lynch a “DINO”, because we disagree with some of his views. Steve Lynch is a Democrat, and he deserves to be treated with respect.

        • Come on now

          From where the thin skin? As insults go, “DINO” is pretty weak tea. And it’s an exaggeration, but not by much. The guy differs from the views of most Massachusetts Democrats on multiple issues. I won’t ever call him names but Steve Lynch and Bobby Kennedy don’t belong in the same sentence. The entire Democratic Party is far to the right of where it was then, and Lynch is to the right of today’s Democratic Party.

          The only extremists we have today are the Republicans. Massachusetts needs to be leading the effort to move the Senate leftward. Is it unreasonable that Democrats prefer to have one of the most progressive states in the nation represented in the Senate by someone who actually shares the party’s platform?

          I’m pretty pissed this guy is making the seat that much harder to hold. I wouldn’t vote for him in a primary with a gun to my head. I won’t work for him in a general election if, by some miracle, he prevails in a primary.

  2. I might consider Lynch

    not sure yet, but I’ll take a look.

  3. Gut sense says....

    Lynch is going to get creamed.

    I do think a spirited but civil primary is good for Markey and bad for Brown. It only keeps the Dem in the statewide spotlight for longer period.

    Time will tell.

  4. I'll keep an open mind

    I’ll keep an open mind on Mr. Lynch (in comparison to Mr. Markey). I don’t know anything about him beyond what I’ve seen both here and in the press — both of which make me less likely to support him.

    I’m not as troubled by late “conversions” as some of us. LBJ was very late to the civil rights party, yet ultimately accomplished enormous progress in advancing civil rights. President Obama was late to the LGBT rights issue — I take him at his word about his reluctance to transfer his personal opinion to formal public policy. Mr. Obama’s version of “pragmatic” politics is troubling, but it is what it is.

    My vote will be determined primarily by who I think is most likely to be the most effective advocate for and supporter of the progressive/liberal issues I care about. Each Democratic candidate has his shortcomings. I know about Mr. Markey’s strengths — I can’t say the same (yet) about Mr. Lynch. I will try very hard not to let my vote be affected (too much) by various “horse race” arguments.

    Thankfully, the primary “season” will be mercifully short.

    • Still not a leader

      The evolution is fine with me, but given his background, I would not expect him to be a leader on the issue. He may make the right votes on the big bills, but I would not expect him to fight for progressive causes as much as Markey, except maybe on labor.

      It’s also worth noting that Lynch was the only member of the MA delegation to NOT sign an amicus brief arguing that DOMA is unconstitutional. 132 Democrats signed, 60 did not. This was last summer. He may have “evolved,” but not nearly enough (on many other issues as well) to get my vote.

      For all of the Lynch supporters on BMG, on what issues do you think he would be a more effective advocate than Markey? Or do you simply believe he’s a better inside game guy and could get more done pushing the ball forward?

      I’m open to arguments on the second question, but on the first, I just don’t see it.

    • I'm trying to think of the last New England state to elect a conservative Democrat

      Hm. What state could that be? And did we like the results? What’s that guy’s name. John? Jim? Joe? Yes, Joe! Joe something. Joe Leatherman? Joe Lobsterman? Something.

      Anyway, the downside of electing another one of those is not going to be good in a way both we — and Ned Lamont — know all to well.

  5. It gets better

    Lynch was at least in the right place here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nluLC6F0sRw

    not that there’s a chance in hell I’d vote for the guy in the primary, after the ACA fiasco and his being rhetorically so anti-choice. It won’t come to a general between Lynch and Brown, but if it did I’d remember who was in the above clip and who was invited and declined…

    • To be clear

      If need me I am willing to make the progressice case for Lynch above Brown. Lynch has come around on gay rights and foreign policy and he’d be about as anti-choice as Bob Casey has been in the Senate, voting symbolically against Roe v Wade every time it comes up but doing little otherwise. But to be clear thats not the race we have right now. Its Markey v Lynch, and then its quite important to make the distintions.

      It goes beyond choice. I used to defend Lynch on the abortion question, not that I ever agreed with his stance but that one could still be a liberal or progressive and hold that view. But he is still to the right of his pro-life predecessor the late, great, Joe Moakley onmost issues especially healthcare and foreign policy. Where Joe voted against Reagans war on the Contras, against the Gulf War, and in favor of universal healthcare Lynchie was unapologetically pro-war and never recanted like Markey has, and he voted against ACA. I would argue he is not even a better labor leader than Markey. So the choice in the primary is clear, I will worry about the general if Lynch advances.

  6. That's it -- stable door is now officially closed.

    Okay. Lynch is in.

    NOBODY else should run in the primary.

    Otherwise, Lynch will win the way he got into Congress — the two progressive candidates will split 60% of the vote, and Lynch will win with the 40% centrists/conservative Democrats. Stupid first-past-the-post electoral system.

    I’m not super-sold on Markey. Except, now, I am. Markey sounds great! Go Markey!! He has the most excellent quality of not being Stephen Lynch.

    • A ringing endorsement in my book!

      He has the most excellent quality of not being Stephen Lynch.

      If Markey had the balls to show the desk in the hall he was confined to in the State House in his first ad back in 76′ he could at least be self-deprecating and say that as well.

      Based on Lynch’s intro he is already going to tear Markey a new one on NAFTA, the bailout, and run an odd populist campaign. I gotta give him credit for running an old school Catholic Democratic platform of social conservatism and economic populism, but that ship from Rome bullshit sailed long ago. Ask Silber. Ed King was the last guy to win on that platform and he got roundly defeated in his rematch with the Duke.

      Most Catholic congressmen, like Markey, vote their conscience over the dogma of the Church and most Catholic voters (especially if the dual Obama majorities are any indication) have come around to that as well. But with so much at stake with the fiscal cliff, immigration, gun control and climate change its sort of sad that this primary will be fought around settled issues like free trade and abortion.

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Mon 22 Dec 5:40 PM