In spite of some of his old pals seeming to push him that direction, and in spite of the support of Obama insiders, our former Gov is not running for President.
There was some considerable skepticism of a Patrick run on this very site, and from the left. In particular his connections with some of the seedier aspects of the corporate world — subprime lending, fossil fuels — have really not aged well. There’s some skepticism based on his working for Bain Capital; to be honest, neither his own description of his actual work for Bain, nor its criticisms, have been specific enough for me to form a judgment.
I will say this: With a few exceptions (casinos), he did not function as a particularly “corporate” governor. He consistently acted on behalf of the public good; he helped create a new, more progressive ideological consensus in Massachusetts that still holds in the Baker era. He advocated unapologetically for the poor and vulnerable, and took political risks on their behalf. He had great successes (jumpstarting the clean energy industry), and some failures (rollout of health care website), and some things where he was on the right side but didn’t prevail (transit funding, universal pre-K).
I don’t claim that he’s the perfect personal vessel for progressive politics; perfect people don’t exist. I don’t know that I would have supported him for President. But I hope that his moral voice and leadership stay in the public consciousness. He’s still vital. I hope he speaks up, and that we pay attention.