Now, as this campaign season heats up, it has become increasingly evident that Governor Baker lacks a record of leadership and positive impact on which to run. As a former candidate for Lt. Governor, I have a deep appreciation for the importance of how voters across the Commonwealth perceive candidates for public office. When speaking with Baker supporters, the universal answer to the question “why would you vote for Charlie Baker again?” is not a long (or even short) list of accomplishments. It is not a clear vision for Massachusetts’ future—the Governor cannot seem to imagine anything but his own re-election. It is not even a track record of standing up, against all odds, on an issue he believes in deeply (except when he tried to privatize public education and lost). No, the only answer I have heard over and over again is “he seems like a ‘nice’ guy.”
Perhaps I have a different definition of nice, or perhaps my expectations for a ‘nice guy’ are too high. Regardless, I thought it best to look at the official Merriam-Webster definition:
Nice: adjective \ ˈnīs \ meaning pleasing or agreeable.
With this definition in mind, I wonder how many people in Massachusetts truly believe that nice, pleasing or agreeable are appropriate words to define this Governor.
I, for one, do not consider the policies, actions, inactions, lack of leadership, or hypocrisy of Charlie Baker to be pleasing or agreeable. In fact, I think Charlie Baker brings whole new meaning to the term ice cold.
- It is cold, not nice, to cold-heartedly cut $1.9 million in funding for critical support services that could have saved the lives of people suffering from addiction.
- It is cold, not nice, to heartlessly take away medical services from 140,000 people.
- It is cold, not nice, to foolishly raise more than $2 million to support not just Donald Trump, but a known racist and accused child molester—Roy Moore.
- It is cold, not nice, to disrespect women in Massachusetts and everywhere by turning a blind eye and a mute mouth to Donald Trump’s boasting of repeatedly sexually assaulting women.
- It is cold, not nice, to limit seniors, students, workers, and others access to public transportation by shortchanging places like the Pioneer Valley $8 million forcing a 20% fare increase and service cuts on 85% of their bus routes.
- It is cold, not nice, toillegally deny children shelterforcing them to sleep in emergency rooms. But it is even colder to allow Massachusetts to be one of only two states where families make up more than half of the homeless population. And colder yet to allow the Commonwealth to have one of the highest increases in homelessness since 2008 in the entire country.
Massachusetts cannot survive another term of this ‘nice guy.’ And the seemingly misguided voters who define Charlie Baker as a ‘nice guy’ should reconsider their definition of “nice.” Until then, I suppose there is one consolation in the old saying “nice guys finish last” because last is exactly where Baker deserves to finish on Election night.