Local Catholic Leaders come out swinging for repeal

Good news for the Yes On 3 crowd. - promoted by david

From Crux:

Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley, Worcester Bishop Robert McManus, Springfield Bishop Mitchell Rozanski and Rev. George Coleman, the Apostolic Administrator of Fall River, say the gambling industry threatens local businesses, “weakens the moral fabric of society” and “fundamentally alters communities.”

And before people scream like Helen Lovejoy-they’ve clearly done their homework and lay out the economic case too-perhaps they have been reading BMG:

The bishops say the Massachusetts’ economy has improved markedly since the casino law passed in 2011. They note that other Northeast states have seen casino gambling revenues decline and that five casinos in Atlantic City, New Jersey could close by the end of the year.

And in case anyone dismisses the influence these prelates have in voters as waning or insignificant, I would remind them that the Church’s opposition to euthanasia helped defeat that proposal.

Seth Moulton on the militarization of local police

First off, if you haven’t read 6th Congressional district candidate Seth Moulton’s live chat right here on BMG, read it now.  Moulton answered a lot of questions, and was almost startlingly forthright in many of his answers.  Clearly, the guy’s a rookie.  ;)  (Note to the humor-impaired: that last line was a joke.)

Among Moulton’s clearest statements on controversial issues was this:

The situation in Ferguson last month is the clearest example of the huge problems a militarized police force present to our communities. We should not be providing military-grade equipment to civilian police, especially if they are not properly trained.

That, to my knowledge, is the strongest statement any candidate for any office in Massachusetts (and maybe beyond) has made on that issue.  I, for one, wholeheartedly welcome it.  And it is particularly powerful coming from someone who actually knows a thing or two about military weaponry.  To refresh your recollection,

Seth joined the Marine Corps in 2001. Although Seth was firmly against the Iraq War, Seth served his country and led his platoon — eventually serving four tours of duty in Iraq over five years. Seth led an infantry platoon during the 2003 invasion and was in the first Marine company to enter Baghdad. Later, he worked to establish an independent Iraqi media. The following year, Seth returned to Iraq as an infantry platoon commander and fought in the lead company in the Battle of Najaf. At the request of then-Lieutenant General David Petraeus, Seth remained in Iraq and joined a small team of Marines working closely with Iraqi security forces and served as a liaison to senior Iraqi leaders south of Baghdad.

Indeed, some of the strongest voices against what happened in Ferguson have come from military veterans highly critical of the way military equipment was deployed there.  I would be delighted if we could send one such voice to Congress this fall.

Seth Moulton Live Chat

Welcome to BMG Seth Moulton! Fire away in the comments. -- (Charley) Bumped. The chat is live now and Seth is answering questions. - promoted by Bob_Neer

Good morning Blue Mass Group!

It is my privilege to serve as the Democratic nominee for Congress in Massachusetts’ 6th district. I look forward to working with you to keep this seat blue in November, and I’d like to kick it off by answering your questions! I’ll be online from 9:30 to 10:30; if you’d like to post some questions in advance just leave them in the comments! Long-time reader, first time poster,

- Seth

Meet Seth Moulton at BMG!

We’re delighted to announce that Seth Moulton, the Democratic candidate for Congress in the 6th district who defeated incumbent John Tierney in last week’s primary, will be online tomorrow between 9:30 and 10:30 am to answer your questions.  We’ll post a new thread tomorrow morning, and Moulton will answer questions in the comments.

Don’t miss it!

Law Suits We Can Expect After Gaming Commission Issues License Decision This Week

Pass the popcorn. To answer Ernie's question in the first paragraph, I'm not exactly sure what the hook for federal jurisdiction would be in any of these scenarios. Caesar's sued in federal court alleging deprivations of due process, but lost (the case is on appeal). Diversity of citizenship would also be a possibility for out-of-state corporations suing the Commission.

Also, Caesar's complaint is here. - promoted by david

First Off. Whoever wants to sue the Commission for not playing fair should bring it in federal court. (David, any jurisdictional problems?)

The judges in The Moakley Building are genetically wired to believe anything coming out of Beacon Hill is highly suspect if not criminal. And they ain’t afraid of no governor or attorney general or former fellow MA Superior Court and Appeals Court judge (McHugh) or the local mob or Steve Wynn or Bill Weld or The Boston Globe. You get the picture? (Okay, they are afraid of the Globe because for the most part they’re Ivy League snobs with little life experience but still better than the state judges on this)

Okay. Let’s project to next week, shall we?

1. The Commission grants Steve Wynn the Everett license.

Result:

MA 6th CD race upgrade favors Dems

Of interest. Also note that Moulton's spokesman, long-time BMGer Scott Ferson, chimes in in the comments. - promoted by david

It appears that Seth Moulton’s campaign was right to suggest he was the better Democratic candidate to oppose Richard Tisei. From today’s Globe story about Deval Patrick’s endorsement of Moulton:

…one group that handicaps political races nationwide changed its prediction for the November general election based on Tierney’s loss.

While the Cook Political Report had previously viewed the race between Tierney and Tisei as a toss-up, analysts now say the race “leans Democratic,” “in light of . . . John Tierney’s primary loss to Seth Moulton,” said David Wasserman, House editor for The Cook Political Report, where he is responsible for handicapping and analyzing elections to the US House

Of course conventional wisdom had Moulton losing the primary, so this kind of conventional wisdom could be equally dangerous. While I’m confident that Moulton will be the next Congressman in the 6th–I will be volunteering for him–Tisei is well known and liked in the district (except of course in Democratic activist circles). So without Democratic volunteers knocking the doors and predictive dialing for Moulton, Tesei could pull the same kind of upset Moulton did.

Another interesting tidbit from the article is that Moulton is leveraging his experience of four tours in Iraq to become a voice of caution about entangling current US “advisors” into combat in Iraq.

“We need to understand exactly how we’re going to have military advisers in Iraq who are not going to get drawn into a ground war,” Moulton said, noting that he has spent time as a military adviser in Iraq, drawn into combat. “After all, the Vietnam War started as a military advisory mission.”

Moulton words of caution having been given a wider progressive audience with recent MSNBC interviews with Rachael Maddow and Chris Matthews.

Hey Charlie Baker! Marty Walsh Just Gave You The Issue To Kill Martha With. You Better Get On It Because Nobody Else Will

Provocative advice from the Sage of BMG. I'll be fascinated to see (a) whether Baker chooses to go down this road, and (b) how Marty Walsh's role in all of this continues to develop. - promoted by david

Anyone who has read the facts leading up to where the Massachusetts Gaming Commission is now on issuing a casino license cannot reasonably believe it’s on the level. There is absolutely no difference between the NFL’s intentional avoidance of what happened in the elevator with our state’s politicians and media avoidance of the Gaming Commission’s conflicts and criminal involvement with the Everett site.

The media is reporting the Mayor’s letter to the Commission as nothing more than a bitch and moan on esoteric issues while ignoring the meat of the correspondence in which Walsh tells them he was born at night but not last night and it’s impossible to believe the Everett deal isn’t dirty on up to the highest level.

So here we have the top law enforcement person in the state, a person who also appointed a member t the Commission,  ignoring it. Not only ignoring it but bending over backwards to help them by wrongfully trying to stop the initiative petition from going forward.

And we have a governor telling the press yesterday he doesn’t see a problem over there. WTF. Hey dude, you just made it so easy to paint you as a corrupt big city politician.

Do you know why Martha? Do you know why Deval? Because these facts are very easy to understand and your actions ignoring them are easy to follow too. So easy they can be turned into useful 10 second soundbites and 15 and 30 second radio and TV ads that will make people puke.

Interesting Tidbits from the Primary Results in Boston

Three cheers for number crunching! - promoted by david

I’ve been very curious to see the precinct-by-precinct results for Boston. And when I did, I decided to go through them and find some interesting tidbits about turnout and candidate support. (For reference, here’s a map of Boston’s wards and precincts.)

Turnout

Aside from the phantom precinct, there were four precincts with turnout below 5%: Ward 21 Precinct 2 (1.65%), Ward 21 Precinct 3 (3.20%), Ward 4 Precinct 10 (3.7%), and Ward 21 Precinct 4 (3.91%). Ward 21 is Allston-Brighton–so, basically students (BU, BC, and Harvard). Ward 4 Precinct 10 consists of the Colleges of the Fenway (Emmanuel College, MassArt, MCPHS University, Simmons College, Wentworth Institute, and Wheelock College).

DigBoston had a sad-and-funny-at-the-same-time piece on Ward 21 Precinct 2, the “saddest little polling location in Boston.”

If you wanted to round out the bottom 10, you’d get Ward 4 Precinct 9 (5.01%), Ward 21 Precinct 8 (5.34%), Ward 21 Precinct 9 (5.58%), Ward 21 Precinct 1 (6.09%), Ward 21 Precinct 15 (6.22%), and Ward 21 Precinct 5 (6.51%). Ward 4 Precinct 9 consists of the area around Northeastern University–mostly a mix of students and housing projects. There were 17 other precincts with turnout below 10%, mostly in student-heavy areas like the ones already noted or Mission Hill.

Only 9 precincts had turnout above 30%: Ward 19 Precinct 2 (35.21%), Ward 20 Precinct 6 (33.59%), Ward 20 Precinct 14 (33.58%), Ward 20 Precinct 12 (33.17%), Ward 16 Precinct 9 (32.85%), Ward 20 Precinct 11 (32.53%), Ward 20 Precinct 4 (30.66%), Ward 19 Precinct 8 (30.55%), and Ward 7 Precinct 1 (30.13%).

The precincts from Wards 19 and 20 are in Roslindale and West Roxbury, Ward 7 Precinct 1 is South Boston, and Ward 16 Precinct 9 is in Dorchester.

If you were to round out the top 10, you’d have Ward 20 Precinct 18 (29.92%).

Gubernatorial Candidates

Where did each candidate do his/her best?

Don Berwick’s best precinct was Ward 19 Precinct 8 in Jamaica Plain, where he received 54.18% of the vote. Don did  well throughout Jamaica Plain, winning Ward 10 Precinct 9, Ward 11 Precincts 6-10, and Ward 19 Precincts 1, 3-6, and 8.

Martha Coakley’s best precinct was Ward 14 Precinct 5 in Mattpan, where she won 80.00% of the vote. Martha did well throughout Ward 14, winning over 60% of the vote in each precinct.

Steve Grossman’s best precinct was Ward 7 Precinct 2 in South Boston, where he won 52.60% of the vote. Steve did well in South Boston, winning Ward 6 Precincts 5-9 and Ward 7 Precincts 1-3.

Where did each candidate do his/her worst?

Don Berwick’s worst precinct was Ward 14 Precinct 5 in Mattapan, where he received only 2.67% of the vote.

Martha Coakley’s worst precinct was Ward 20 Precinct 20 in West Roxbury (right at the border with Brookline and Newton), where she received only 25.57% of the vote.

Steve Grossman’s worst precinct was Ward 14 Precinct 9 in Mattapan, where he received only 14.04% of the vote.

One trend I found particularly noteworthy was how well Coakley did in the majority-black precincts.

Using 2011 data, I identified 55 such precincts: Ward 8 Precincts 3, 4, and 7; Ward 9 Precinct 5; Ward 11 Precincts 2 and 3; Ward 12 Precincts 1-9; Ward 14 Precincts 1-14; Ward 15 Precincts 2 and 5; Ward 17 Precincts 1-5, 7, 8, 10-12, and 14; Ward 18 Precincts 1-6, 8, 14, 15, and 21. These precincts cover area in Roxbury, Mattapan, Hyde Park, and Dorchester.

Martha Coakley won all of them with clear majorities, ranging from 52.68% (Ward 8 Precinct 3) to 80.00% (Ward 14 Precinct 5). Her margin of victory ranged from 23.66% in Ward 17 Precinct 4 to 64.91% in Ward 14 Precinct 9.

In 49 out of the 55, she had over 60% of the vote. In 25 of the 55, she had over 70%.

I didn’t take the time to go through this for the down ballot races, but I’d be very curious to see the results.

Whose Side Is Steve Crosby Really On? Yours or the Mobsters? Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Thing Going On At The Gaming Commission If You Ask Me

And how was Mr. Crosby chosen, inquiring minds would like to know. Bumps, and bests, my Joke Revue, sigh. - promoted by Bob_Neer

Mayor Walsh’s kick-ass chronological order of events detailing the many infidelities the Gaming Commission is committing with Steve Wynn is a must read. What’s that? You don’t have time? I understand so below is a summary.

A guy named Paul Lohnes and another guy named Gary DiCicco together bought an option on the Everett property. DiCicco was a convicted felon. Seems he was in the habit of burning down buildings he owned for the insurance. Typical wise-guy shit. A few weeks later they brought in another partner named Dustin DiNunzio. Meanwhile DiCicco was was leveraging his in interest all over the place.

After all was said and done the property came under their control with Paul Lohnes owning 50%, the convicted arsonist scam man DiCicco owning 15%, a guy named Anthony Gatteneri controlling another 15%, DiNinzio had 3%, and convicted felon named Lightbody 12%.

As time went on Gatteneri took over DiCicco’s 15%.

Got that?

Now Lightbody, the convicted gangster owning 12.5%, should be called “Lighthead” because he ain’t too bright. Some guys just can’t keep their mouths shout. (Like James “Marsha Clark” McHugh and Steve “Christopher Darden” Crosby)

Lighbody gets himself on a recorded telephone call with a buddy serving state prison time. Who would have thunk the prison records prisoner’s calls? On the tape he’s boasting about his interest in the land and the millions he’s going to make.

This shady group of characters (trust me, if you are willing to partner with DiCicco or Lightbody you’re shady) then got Steve Wynn to take a look for a possible casino.

Now here’s where it get’s good.

In the fall of 2012 (two years ago) Commissioner Crosby learned of the Everett site, Wynn’s interest in it, and  Paul Lohnes (see above) 50% interest.

Lohnes name rang a bell of course. (If in fact this was the first he knew of it) The name rang a bell because it was the same Paul Lohnes who is his close friend, former employee, and most important the guy who bailed out his fledging business with a million dollar infusion of cash a few years back making him a former business partner.

Now a couple of months later convicted criminal/property owner Lightbody is again recorded talking to the same prisoner explaining how the law doesn’t allow criminals to profit anywhere in the scheme including ownership in the properrty. As a result, he tells his buddy, that his interest will be double and tripled blinded to hide it from the Commission.

Meanwhile the Boston Business Journal was reporting that DiCicco, ( the felon that was “dropped” from the ownership group) really wasn’t dropped.

You guys still with me here?

Okay, in December 2012 Wynn signs the agreement for the Everett land. Right away Lightbody, the other convicted felon, brags to his prison friend then goes out and tries to secure a mortgage with it.

Joke Revue: Used Tool Purchased for $1.8 Million

Borowitz:

Used Tool Purchased for $1.8 Million

NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—A used tool that has been on the market for several months was purchased on Tuesday for the whopping price of $1.8 million.

While it may not have set a new record, the sale price raised eyebrows, with many observers noting that $1.8 million was a lot to pay for this particular tool.

But others defended the purchase, arguing that the tool had been successfully bought and sold many times in the past.

CNN Begins Coverage of Royal Pregnancy

NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—CNN kicked off its coverage of the latest royal pregnancy on Monday by simulating the journey of Prince William’s sperm to Kate Middleton’s egg.

Holding two plastic models of the Windsors’ reproductive cells, the CNN host Don Lemon offered viewers a dramatic re-creation of the path taken by the royal spermatozoon.

The CNN president Jeff Zucker praised the demonstration, calling it “the perfect way to kick off our twenty-four-hour coverage of this story for the next nine months.”

“This is the most important story of the year, and we plan to throw everything at it,” Zucker said, adding that he was reassigning reporters who are currently working from Ukraine. …

McCain Rips Obama’s Failure to Bomb Stonehenge

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) blasted President Obama on Saturday for failing to bomb Stonehenge while in the United Kingdom for the NATO summit.

“This is a time when it’s important to send our enemies the message that the United States is strong,” McCain told Fox News. “I can think of no better way to do that than by blowing Stonehenge off the map.”

Daniel Kurtzman:

“Tonight President Obama will make a prime-time speech about how we’re going to deal with violent extremists and their sickening behavior. And when he’s done talking about the NFL, he’ll talk about ISIS.” –Conan O’Brien

“The New York Times had to issue a correction after an article referred to Dick Cheney as president of the United States. The Times apologized to Dick Cheney and changed his title to ‘former president of the United States.’” –Conan O’Brien

“The president reassured Americans that while we face no immediate threat from ISIS, we’ve got a ton of bombs sitting around so we’re going to use them.” –Jimmy Kimmel

“Guess who we may be partnering with to fight ISIS. None other than Iran. Iran used to be our enemy back, like, last week, but now we may be upgrading our relationship to frenemy.” –Jimmy Kimmel

“Prince William and his bride are expecting her second baby. That’s pretty quick for Kate to have a second baby. It’s almost as if producing an heir is her job.” –Craig Ferguson

“This week President Obama will announce his plans for addressing the threat posed by ISIS extremists in Iraq. It’s an incredibly difficult situation. I think at this point he should just tell Liam Neeson that they have his daughter.” –Seth Meyers

“Of course, it’ll get weird when Chris Christie’s family says, ‘No, no, no, you’re supposed to blow the candles out BEFORE you eat it!’” –Jimmy Fallon

“Chris Christie has to brush up on foreign policy, so he went to Mexico. Remember when he was in Africa? He was followed by ivory poachers. Now he’s in Mexico, and he was taunted by a matador.” –David Letterman

“Apple plans to launch a mobile wallet to replace credit cards. That’s good because if there’s one company you want to trust with your money, it’s the company that leaked your nude photos.” –Conan O’Brien

Wonk Post: 2014 MA Governor Polling Aggregate

Worth 1,000 words, at least. - promoted by Bob_Neer

From HuffPost/Pollster:

Cape Wind Seals New Bedford Deal - Will Koch Finally Call Off Lawyers?

Progress. - promoted by Bob_Neer
Weeks 500

Mass CEC South Terminal under construction in New Bedford (Flickr’s Ryan Silva)

Cape Wind has signed a lease agreement to stage its 130-turbine project in Nantucket Sound out of New Bedford’s South Terminal, reports Ariel Wittenberg in the Standard-Times:

Cape Wind will pay a total of $4.5 million in rent to the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, which owns the 28-acre facility, for two years. During that time, Cape Wind will be the only operator of the facility and the terms of lease allow for two one-year extensions.

Cape Wind has said that the assembly, staging and ocean construction of the project will create 600 to 1,000 jobs. Once in operation, the project is expected to employ 150 people, at least 50 of whom are expected to be based in Falmouth to do maintenance on the Nantucket Sound turbines.

The lease agreement is significant not just for Cape Wind but for New Bedford and the commonwealth’s future involvement in the offshore wind industry. City officials have long stated that being the first port to stage an offshore wind farm will help the city to attract future projects and industry manufacturers.

Cape Wind also had held a lease option in Quonset, Rhode Island. Audra Parker of the William Koch-funded ”Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound” had been trying to use the Quonset option to divide Massachusetts on Cape Wind, warning Cape Wind would dump New Bedford for Quonset. Various local anti-wind activists like Frank Haggerty joined Parker in pushing the talking point, demonstrating their reasonableness in the comments of Parker’s letter:

Y’know, the Nazis had solar panels that they made the Jews wear.