Been trying to keep track of too many things!
- As we speak, the City of Boston, pop. 692,600 has exactly ONE dropbox for mail-in ballots — at City Hall on the third floor. They didn’t leave them up at the early polling places, as far as I know. (Anyone is welcome to give info on this.) I phone-banked some folks in Boston who had their ballots, but hadn’t handed them in to the boxes yet. Are they supposed to drive from Roslindale to City Hall to drop off their ballot? Boston Elections Committee … are you serious? Somerville (pop. ~82,000), on the other hand, has ten dropboxes that are still available until tomorrow.
- Vote Jesse Mermell in the 4th district tomorrow, if you haven’t decided. Jake Auchincloss is still leading a still-crowded field, and he’s just not acceptable. There are a lot of things, but I can’t get over is his registration as a Republican to work for Charlie Baker. I think — stay with me here — that we can vote for a consistent Democrat in a Democratic primary.Mermell is quite close to Auchincloss in the polls. You know the story: She’s a progressive business leader, a former Deval Patrick aide, Ayanna Pressley’s bestie. It would be her vs. Ihssane Leckey for my vote: Deval Patrick-era left-liberal vs. Bernie-leftist, if you like; though their platforms are quite similar. Mermell is within striking distance; Leckey isn’t. So go Jesse.
- Vote Robbie Goldstein vs. Lynch. Got to be done.
- Vote Alex Morse vs. the moribund Richard Neal. Look, I still don’t like the idea of Morse having assignations with undergrads, at all; and it’s not homophobic to say so. It’s not good judgment. But some things are more important to the public. Neal is a thoroughly-compromised, not-very-competent corporate Democrat who has failed in his duty to check the Trump administration’s corruption. He’d be replaced as Ways and Means chair by Lloyd Doggett of Austin TX, who is much more progressive. I suppose we’d lose something in Massachusetts largesse … but again, some things are more important.
- So many state rep races, and they all matter profoundly, and my word has scant influence. There is a possibility of a major progressive shift within the building. Jconway mentioned a number of them here; Boston City Council aide Lee Nave talked about a few here; and ProgressiveMass has a comprehensive list of endorsements; here’s 350MassAction’s list of endorsees.
Anyway, I’m particularly rooting for these incredibly impressive candidates:
- Damali Vidot, Chelsea/Charlestown
- Steve Owens (of course!!) Watertown. Our old BMG friend.
- Nichole Mossalam, Medford/Malden (running against Donato, so I hope she’s ready to send out birthday cards)
- Joe Gravellese, Revere/Chelsea. In case you missed it, really amazing interview responses from Joe on BMG here.
- Lisa Arnold in Lowell: She wears purple, rides a bike — sold.
- Alison Leary, Newton/Watertown. Climate-woke.
- Andrew Flowers (Sharon/Stoughton/Walpole/Mansfield)
- .. and there are many more. Who’s your favorite?
Please share widely!
I second all the state legislative endorsements and will just add that Andrew was a debate partner in undergrad and Joe was one of the highest ranked speech and debaters we had at Revere. I’ve seen them both in action and they are wicked smart progressives committed to changing Beacon Hull running in historically purple places.
I’ll add that Jake is a friend and I don’t appreciate the unfair attacks against a combat marine on a host of issues unrelated to the primary. Look at his record in Newton, his endorsements there, and his commitments in this race and you see a progressive working to get things done. If you like Jesse or someone else better that’s great, that’s what a primary is for, but there has way too much negativity in a crowded race full of good candidates that almost begs us to vote for ranked choice voting. I predict Jake will win since his brand of pragmatic progressivism is similar to his predecessors in the Senate. We need vocal people willing to make good trouble like AOC and AP, and we need workhorses willing to cut deals and seriously think through legislation. That’s Markey and Jake to me.
Charley on the MTA says
Well … your personal testimony is meaningful, and I take it seriously. But I see in Jake the potential to become an irritating and unhelpful “maverick” in the Seth Moulton mold, only more so (I won’t say Joe Lieberman — too harsh). It’s just an odd history, and — admittedly from afar — I don’t trust it. We know who Jesse Mermell is.
So if he wins, I hope you’re right.
I see him as more of a Adam Schiff or Elissa Slotkin type, who might be more centrist than me on some of the issues, but has a deep expertise on foreign policy and military issues he can deploy in hearings to hold administrations of either party accountable.
We will desperately need to restore objective oversight in the wake of the Trump administration and that passion and a passion for procedural reforms like ranked choice voting and eliminating the electoral college appeal to me. He values the role of the courts and emphasizes that more than the other candidates. I like that he regularly has experts come on his town halls to discuss issues from the pandemic to climate resiliency to terrorism.
Jesse checks off more of my policy boxes and people I respect vouch for her integrity, but she clearly thinks she can win this race solely by turning out her Brookline/Newton base to her to 15% and win the seat. I think Jake and some of the other candidates like Khazei are making a real effort to be a candidate the majority of the district can get behind. He’s been treated in this race about as unfairly as Will Brownsberger was treated a few years ago, all for principled deviations from the party line.
I don’t see how ANY on-the-record endorsement of Charlie Baker can be seen as anything but betrayal.
Various sources (https://www.boston.com/news/politics/2020/08/16/jake-auchincloss-4th-district-democratic-primary) report that Mr. Auchincloss was a registered Republican in 2013-2014 and paid political consultant for Mr. Baker. In what world is that a “principled” deviation?
I strongly opposed the Democratic nominee in 2014. I think she was a terrible choice and her defeat was predictable and predicted. I did NOT endorse, never mind work for, Charlie Baker.
Will you please remind me which GOP candidate for ANY office Mr. Brownsberger endorsed and worked for?
89% of Democrats approve of Charlie Baker and say they will vote to re-elect him in a recent poll. The only people who dislike Baker are concentrated on twitter and this website. Even his support of the dreaded Weymouth compressor didn’t stop him from clearing 60% in that town. Most of my local’s membership voted for Baker.
So even if we can argue the reality is different, he’s perceived as a competent and centrist leader and is quite popular. Attacking a Democrat for liking Baker is a losing strategy. Plenty of Democrats like him. More so than liked Gonzalez who failed to crack 40% in the bluest state in a wave year. I voted for him in the primary and general, but knew he was a loser against Baker. We all did. It’s a lousy litmus test.
When endorsing and working for a GOP opponent is a “lousy litmus test” for the Democratic Party, then the Democratic Party is just as dead as the GOP.
I don’t challenge any of your observations about the electorate, I instead disagree with the meaning you draw from them.
I am a Democrat because I believe in the values and priorities of the Democratic Party. I do not remember ANY member of the GOP in my lifetime — including Charlie Baker — who reflects those values and priorities.
I think that not supporting the other side in a recent statewide election is a frigging starting point for my support.
Well only about 11% of Democrats agree with you about Baker. I’m one of them by the way, but I don’t think we beat him by exiling everyone who voted for him from the party. It is obviously something the state party has failed to sanction and there’s a world of difference between Charlie Baker and Donald Trump. I am not arguing it’s an invalid litmus test, just an irrelevant one to the voters of the CD4.
Surely there is difference between “exiling everyone who voted for him from the party” and asserting that someone who endorses him and works on his behalf as a paid consultant should not be a Democratic candidate.
I agree that Charlie Baker is not Donald Trump. Neither was Mitt Romney.
I don’t want people who endorse and work for Republicans to hold elective office in MA as “Democrats”.
I view this poll information about Democrats as yet another datapoint to show that the “Democratic Party” brand is worse than meaningless.
The state party does act against committee members who publicly support the other nominee, but we can’t keep them from being registered Dems.
There is (or at least should be) a difference between a registered Democrat and a Democratic candidate.
We’ve been over this before. The law allows anyone to register with any party and become the nominee if that person secures the signatures and the most votes in the primary. The only solution I can think of is to allow the state party to veto candidates on the same basis as expelling committee members, but I also see two problems: It would be seen by those outside the bubble as undemocratic meddling by the machine; it may also push vetoed candidates to run as independent and risk splitting the general election vote.
I know you care about this Tom, I was simply looting out this isn’t the kind of thing most voters care about. A really plugged in Democratic insider I’m friends with argued Markey over Kennedy because Kennedy endorses Greg Henning for DA four years ago. In real life, nobody cares.
Most voters in this state haven’t even bothered to join a party. So I get that it’s disqualifying for you, but it’s a lousy litmus test because its partisan inside baseball most voters don’t care about. Independents and 9/10 Democrats like Baker, and it might backfire on Jesse to attack Jake for this association. He’s certainly far more popular than Mitt Romney ever was with Democratic voters. Not defending his policies, but if we insist our bubble is reality we cease to be reality based. Voters do not care.
Whereas “candidate X voted to cut social security” matters to all voters. We really need to be hitting Trump on social security cuts, and Baker on cuts to local aid, instead of fan servicing our base all the time.
The fact that it is “inside baseball” to object to a “Democratic” candidate who literally worked to elect a still-sitting GOP governor is another indication that our political system is completely broken.
It shows that party affiliation means absolutely NOTHING. A two-party system in which party affiliation is meaningless is a political system that is badly broken.
Two candidates are competing in a Democratic primary for the seat that Denise Provost is vacating. The one with the most yard signs voted in the Cambridge election last November and registered to vote in Somerville literally ON THE DAY that Ms. Provost announced her retirement. Her response to the complaint that she is violating the spirit even if not the letter of the residency requirement was to whine that the complaint was because she is a “woman of color”. Yeah, right.
She claims to be a “community organizer”. Sounds to me as though she might benefit from studying a bit more history — enough to know what the word “carpetbagger” means and why it is so derogatory.
A whole lot has been written, including here at BMG, about the gentrification of Somerville.
The most significant change happening in my neighborhood — aside from the GLX — is that the people who actually have some affection, commitment, and knowledge of this neighborhood and those like it are being tossed out of office to be replaced by candidates who don’t know, don’t care, and don’t care that they don’t know anything at all about these neighborhoods and those of us who live here.
I want DEMOCRATS to run as Democrats in a Democratic primary. If somebody who thinks Charlie Baker is a good governor wants me to vote for them, they have a LOT of selling to do.
The fact that I can’t rely on the “Democratic” brand to mean anything AT ALL — a fact that Christopher has made ever so clear after years of effort — makes me unlikely to vote for ANYBODY I haven’t actually met and actually know. What do you think are the chances that Ayanna Pressley will show up to a block party here here on my street? How about the candidate from Cambridge? How likely do you think it will be that either will be participating in a Davis Square picket line without a press entourage? I think slim-to-none.
We are destroying the meaning of our electoral system while bemoaning the fact that people — young people especially — don’t vote.
A guy who was a registered Republican in 2013 and who collected a paycheck to put Charlie Baker in office has no business calling himself a “Democrat” if he is chosen.
With “Democrats” like that, nobody needs Republicans.
Again Tom, I am saying it’s valid for you to feel that way. I am saying it’s invalid to insist everyone else feel the same way. 9/10 Democrats don’t care, and if you think that’s a problem, and maybe it is, then we have a lot more work to do than a one off primary.
I say to Jake welcome aboard since we need all hands on deck to beat Trump. Granted within a Democratic primary it’s definitely an issue some voters care about, probably the 11% who don’t care for Baker. Which even in a nine candidate race, is still not enough to win.
This is Massachusetts. Of course party affiliation means nothing. Having a party label that means nothing is exactly what the “values and priorities” of the Mass Dem party are.
I can’t argue with your cynicism. Sadly, you are exactly correct.
Plenty of us also want real Dems, but alas, we are not every voter. I’m still not sure what you would propose, but since we’ve invoked His Excellency in this discussion I’ll point out there are probably hardcore partisans on his side not terribly happy with him either.
One thing that slightly irks me is his ad about standing up to Trump. Certainly as a Dem he is hoping he won’t really have to, because their terms will overlap by only 17 days, right?
But that’s the buzzword that gets clicks and donors these days. I do think we have to figure out what we stand for as much as what we stand against.
Trickle up says
All of us will have many opportunities to stand up to Trump in the months to come.
My wife and I are eagerly looking forward to tomorrow’s election. As a newly-naturalized citizen, it will be her first time voting in ANY election. She and I are excited about this milestone.
I’ll be voting for Mr. Markey.
Closer to home, I’ll be voting for Catia Sharpe to replace the retiring Denise Provost. Ms. Provost is a friend and neighbor who has served all of us well. She will be greatly missed.
I think either of the candidates to replace Ms. Provost will represent us well. I much prefer Ms. Sharpe.
I’m unhappy that her opponent voted in the Cambridge municipal elections in 2019, and changed her registration to Somerville on January 12 of this year — the same day that Ms. Provost publicly announced her retirement.
I don’t care if her opponent can find some legal handwaving that makes this OK — I don’t like it. I find it opportunistic, and I don’t like the message it sends about neighborhoods and neighbors (never mind election law).
Catia Charpe has lived in Somerville seven years. That’s good enough for me, since I’m a tourist myself — I moved here in 2010.
That should be “Catia Sharp”.
Here (https://www.newsbreak.com/massachusetts/somerville/news/1595699166466/column-why-im-supporting-catia-sharp-for-state-representative-in-the-27th-middlesex) is a short and crisp statement of why I’m voting for Ms. Sharp (emphasis mine):
Where are all these polls in the 4th that you speak of? I’m under the impression there are no recent public polls to give us a fair idea of what happening. Oh sure, plenty of gossip about what various campaign polls “say” but that gossip has to be taken with a huge grain of salt.
Frankly I see a brilliant PR coup by the Mermell campaign, creating the impression that only she is positioned to beat the trojan horse Republican in the race. The reality is in a 7 (active) candidate race, all bets are off. All we have to do is look at the outcome of the 3rd congressional, where hundreds of votes separated the two leaders and most of the field feel within points behind the top two…all of which would have fallen within the margin or error.
So this “Mermell” has the only chance seems like a PR line that you’ve bought out of fear of letting the boogie man win.
Here is the most recent public poll I found, that is two weeks old and while Jesse and Jake are tied at 12 points each, 45% are still undecided…it is a complete jump ball.
Charley on the MTA says
Here’s the poll, from RABA research. Absolutely no idea how reputable, but … for now it’s what we’ve got.
Like the 3rd CD last time, this is a race that cries out for RCV.
100%. It wouldn’t have been nearly as contentious.
Trickle up says
Auchincloss could certainly win with a plurality substantially smaller than a majority. Thanks to our brain-dead electoral system.
Pretty much all of the megacandidate primaries over the past 2 decades are poster children for ranked-choice reforms.
Any of them could win without a majority. I give Jake and Jesse credit for endorsing RCV. Even while the two front runners are obviously running on opposite ends of the primary spectrum, they can come together on this common sense reform.
Another interesting bug of this election is the higher percentage of turnout because people are voting from home and while holding their ballot can actually look up the downballot candidates running for office. I wonder if Helina Fontes benefits in her governors council race because she has a website and the incumbent she is challenging does not.
Trickle up says
I’m making a bald-faced assumption, that Auchincloss would not be the majority candidate in this district under any fair system. Of course I can’t prove that.
You could at least make a strong case that Capuano (23%), Clark (32), and Trahan (22) might have prevailed under a majority-rules system. Of course, they should have had the opportunity to do so.
In the case of Trahan, another likely benefit of RCV would be not needing a recount vis-a-vis Dan Koh, since that would have sorted itself out in the multiple counts.
Not necessarily. You could have required a recount between two different candidates.
I think #mapoli is making a poor case that Jesse would win either RCV or ranked choice voting. 55% of voters choose someone other than the top two finishers. It’s likely someone like Grossman ideologically in between Jake and Jesse would have gotten a lot of their 2’s and 3’s. Impossible to know. I do hope we pass RCV and Jesse pursues her rematch in the primary and not as a general election write in during the fall as she is allegedly planning.
I think median voter theory would indicate that Jake and Jesse would have a harder time in RCV since they are at the extreme ends of the spectrum. The candidates who sit to Jakes left and Jesse’s right would have clustered together and likely shared second and third choices amongst each other. I got into a long debate about RCV with a condorcet method supporting friend of mine. It’s here to backfill races under a different system.
I do think Clark was close to that sweet spot, to the left of Brownsberger and Peter K and to the right of Carl Sciortino and about even with Karen Spilka. She’s ended up being a lot more liberal than I expected.
Trahan was arguably on the right of that primary, although that fits the contours of the district. I still would’ve voted for her over Walsh hack Koh.
Trickle up says
Condorcet! I’m as psephological as the next geek, but talk about the perfect being the enemy of the good!
Another primary finally and officially ended a couple weeks ago when Joe Biden became our presidential nominee. I mention this just because there was NO convention commentary on BMG as far as I can tell. I realize things were different this year and we are down to one editor, but it’s emblematic of how less active this site has become in recent years.
I see this as a reflection of how broken the larger political system is rather than a reflection of BMG. I watched a tiny fraction of the DNC and none of the RNC. I’ve stopped watching mainstream news pretty much altogether.
The government we have today is the government that MUST protect representative democracy from the fascist onslaught of Donald Trump and the Trumpists. I remain to be convinced that it is up to the challenge.
Trickle up says
Mainstream news is neither.
Trickle up says
Broadcast news, anyway.
I’ve been really disgusted by how little actual news is available anywhere. There’s some via the net, but it requires more than a little effort to find.
Cable/broadcast offerings are embarrassing. Fox, CNN, and MSNBC strike me as three different colors of excrement.
MAJOR events are not even being mentioned — the 2020 census is going to badly undercount minorities and immigrants. The Trump administration is completely shredding virtually ALL congressional oversight and nobody is doing anything.
I’ve become more and more
convinced that we were/would be better off with the network news, public television, C-Span and that’s it. Other than the JFK assassination and 9/11, there’s really no need for 24 hour coverage of anything. I wonder how Watergate would have gone down with one network seizing on each piece of evidence as the smoking gun while the other gave total cover to the president. Neither is a function of good journalism.
CNN was born as a result of the Iran hostage crisis. That’s also what made ABC a legitimate news player.
I think your specific complaint is readily solved by restoring the fairness doctrine and equal time rules. I don’t think the technology is the issue, I think it is instead the lie that a “free market” is the solution to every problem. These distortions and failures will continue as long as media is funded by advertising, owned by big business, and unregulated. We have the ability — and once used it — to prevent one corporate entity to own all the media of a given market (never mind state, region, or country).
Another step we can and should take is to repeal the 22nd Amendment. It, like the misguided deregulation of the media, are both manifestations of a corrupt and intellectually bankrupt GOP that values power and money over every other consideration.
I don’t want the current guy musing about repeal of the 22nd amendment!
The current guy is there because of the 22nd Amendment. Donald Trump will not win another election, that’s why he and his supporters so desperately seek ways to hold power anyway.
There have been two presidents in my lifetime who could have and should have been elected to at least a third term: Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.
America would be in MUCH greater shape today if either had done so.
My wife and I were live voters number 116 and 117 at Ward 5 Precinct 2. The polling place was a larger room across the hall in the same building. We got to keep the pen and we did not get the usual sticker. The usual checkout desk was not present.
It was quick and easy, there was one other voter while we were there and another arriving as we left.