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Morse Library

The Natick Democratic Town Committee will host a debate on April 6 for the candidates for the open state Senate seat – state Rep. Lida Harkins and Dr. Peter Smulowitz – on the April 13 primary ballot.

The event will be held at 7 p.m. at the Morse Institute Library, 14 East Central St. in the Lebowitz Meeting Hall. The debate will be moderated by Rick Holmes, Editorial Page Editor of The MetroWest Daily News, and will include questions from the public.

The Natick Democratic Town Committee is also planning to co-sponsor a candidate forum for both parties’ nominees prior to the May 11 Special Election.

This is one of two special elections and one of only two chances to act early for independent candidates this year.

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The Massachusetts State House

Today was the legislative deadline to refer bills out of committee. After today, unless your bill was ‘late filed’ or got a special extension – then it’s dead. At least until next year.

I called the legislature about two bills I care about H1400 (Shared Parenting) and H1785 (Alimony Reform) and fortunately both have gotten extensions.  They are both still alive until at least May 7th.

I doubt H1400 will make it out of committee this year. I think it will be successfully blocked by just a few legislators. Even though Shared Parenting is very popular with voters – like many issues – it will be blocked by two committee chairmen – Cindy Creem and Gene O’Flaherty. Read the rest of this entry »

Cambridge Senior Center

All six of the announced Democratic candidates have accepted invitations to take part in the Cambridge Democratic City Committee’s Candidate’s Forum.  The candidates include (in alphabetical order):

The debate will take place Thursday, March 18th, at 7:00pm, at the Cambridge Senior Center, 805 Massachusetts Ave, across from City Hall. All are welcome to attend and to submit questions for the candidates. Read the rest of this entry »

I’ll be appearing on The Father’s Corner on the Boston Neighborhood Network at 6pm tomorrow. This is channel 9 on Comcast or channel 15 on RCN. You can find out more about who is behind this blog.

I think we are going to talk about this project and why I’m doing it.

I got started by trying to advocate for a few issues that are important to me – Shared Parenting – and then, as I got educated on the issues, Alimony Reform and 209a reform.

But, as I talked to legislators, I came to understand how powerless they are. All of the power is concentrated in the hands of the Speaker and the Senate president, and to some extent the chairmen of the committees. Those who don’t move in lockstep with the leadership really can’t get anything done. Read the rest of this entry »

The Massachusetts State House

Legislative leaders announced Friday that they intend to cut up to 4% from local aid next year.

There are two pools of local aid:

  • Chapter 70 – which is aid specifically for education, which cities and towns use to supplement their school budgets. This pool is roughly $4 billion dollars per year.
  • Unrestricted local aid – which towns generally use to supplement either education or public safety, like extra police. This pool is roughly $1 billion dollars per year.

You can get a sense of how much local aid your town gets from DOR.

The entire state budget last year was about $30 billion. So this local aid is only about 16% of the total state budget. The 4% cut in these two accounts represents a savings for the state of only 0.6% of the budget.

But the impact will be tremendous. Read the rest of this entry »

On Thursday March 11th, Cynthia Creem was honored at the Massachusetts Bar Association’s 2010 Gala Dinner with their coveted “Legislator of the Year Award.” And it’s about time. After all, Sen. Creem has been carrying water for the lawyers’ lobbies for years. They say it best themselves:

As the co-chair of the Joint Committee on the Judiciary, Creem weighs in on legislation related to criminal law, the courts and civil and equal rights. A sponsor of four bills on behalf of the MBA, Creem has a longstanding history of collaboration with the MBA.

When the various lawyers’ lobbies ( Mass Bar, Boston Bar, Women’s Bar, Academy of Matrimonial Attorneys, Real Estate Bar etc. etc. )  need to get something done they can count on Creem. She files about 4 bills on their behalf most years.

Cynthia Creem and lawyer lobbyist friends from the WBA

Read the rest of this entry »

Deval Patrick

Polling firm Public Policy Polling released its latest latest poll about Massachusetts. It’s bad news for Deval again:

Do you approve or disapprove of Governor Patrick’s job performance?

Approve …………. 22%
Disapprove ……… 59%
Not Sure ………….. 19%

This is one of the lowest approval ratings of any Governor in America. It’s lower than Jon Corzine who was recalled. More troubling for Patrick is that only 19% of the respondents are “not sure.” To make headway he has the difficult job of converting people who already have a negative opinion. He has an almost 3-1 ratio of unfavorables.

Read the rest of this entry »

We’ve just added an exciting new feature. You can now follow our own special brand of coverage of independent candidates on Facebook.

Starting today all our posts to Massachusetts Election 2010 are streamed automatically to our new Facebook group. Now you can either visit our site, or just join the Facebook group and get your updates that way.

This new feature joins the many other ways you can stay informed on the upcoming November elections. You can follow us on Twitter by following #MassElection. Or you can subscribe to the blog via email.

We have also added the ability to share any article you see by using the Share links, allowing you to easily share an article to your own Facebook wall, Digg, email and many other social media outlets.

Debate at Chelsea City Hall

The first debate for disgraced former Senator Galluccio’s seat was held tonight at Chelsea City Hall. It’s getting clearer who the leaders are – Albano, DiDomenico and Flaherty. Only one really stood out as the independents’ choice – Mike Albano.

This is a very short race – just 34 days left. It’s going to take a big effort for Albano to gain the name recognition he needs against some established and well financed competitors.

All three major candidates did well. But Albano was the most eloquent and compelling. His deep and resonant voice catches people’s attention. On so many issues – foreclosures, jobs, public education, drugs – he came back to the same important point – there is so much that needs to be done, yet year after year Beacon Hill fails to act:

“Why don’t we have any of this? These are good ideas. Why are they not acted on, on Beacon Hill. We need so much now. We need everything right now. What the heck is going on?”

Read the rest of this entry »

Charles Rudnick

Charles Rudnick launched a new campaign web site. His message is right on target. Even though Creem has a 2-1 funding advantage, Rudnick has pledged not to take any contributions from lobbyists or PACs:

Charles will fight for you as a full-time legislator and will refuse money from lobbyists, PACs and special interests.

His opponent Cynitha Creem is touting her support of ethics reform, having voted for H4133, a bill which would regulate lobbyists. The bill is a mixed bag. While it would regulate lobbyists, and increase penalties for bribery, the bill further weakens the open meetings law and does not ban outright campaign contributions from lobbyists as other states have done.

To date Creem has not pledged to refuse more campaign contributions from lobbyists.

Candidates are required to disclose their campaign contributions before the primaries. We will see then which of these candidates is the independent progressive.

William Delahunt

Candidates are tripping over themselves to run for Bill Delahunt’s 10th Congressional district.

CQPolitics has an interesting analysis :

The race to succeed Rep. Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.) looks likely to come down to four men, a pair of Republicans and a pair of Democrats who have all summer to fight it out for their parties’ nominations.

State Sen. Robert O’Leary (D) told CQ-Roll Call Monday he is definitely in the race and plans to open up a bank account and set up a campaign committee this week. A formal announcement will probably come the following week, he said.

O’Leary’s primary competition for the seat is likely to be District Attorney William Keating, whose spokesman told local press outlets over the weekend that he is also running and will make an announcement in the coming days. Read the rest of this entry »

The latest Rasmussen poll has some surprising numbers. There is the expected high approval ratings for Scott Brown – 70%. But what is really surprising is this:

Generally speaking, would it better for the country if most incumbents in Congress were reelected this November or if most of them were defeated?

25% Better if most incumbents were reelected
53% Better if most incumbents were defeated
22% Not sure

Massachusetts voters – by a whopping 2-1 margin – would like to see the majority of their congressional delegation defeated.

Read the rest of this entry »

Deval Patrick

It looks like Deval Patrick may convene a task force on Shared Parenting after all.

For months now, activists for Shared Parenting, bill H1400 have been asking Gov. Patrick to convene a task force on shared parenting like he promised months ago.

It looks like Patrick may keep his promise to the people after all. The Governors cheif legal counsel, Mo Cowan has been making inquiries into who should be on the task force. On the short list are Dr. Net Holstein and Dr. Peter Hill.

Cynthia Creem

The public debate over two dueling alimony reform bills has called into question whether Sen. Cynthia Creem has a conflict of interest.

There are two bills currently up for discussion in the Legislature, s1616 and h1785. Both concern time limits for alimony payments.

Massachusetts’ current alimony law does not empower judges to cap the duration of an alimony award, enabling post-divorce settlements that can last a lifetime. The current law has drawn fire from alimony payors who say they’ve been forced for years to pay large percentages of their incomes, occasionally forcing them into bankruptcy. Read the rest of this entry »

Marie St. Fleur

Marie St. Fleur was an up and coming legislator, vice chair of the powerful Ways and Means Committee and a member of the  Judiciary Committee and by all accounts someone who was going do well in the Legislature.

But she quickly found out how little power representatives have to get things done. They find out quickly – if you hope to have a future you have to vote with the House leadership.

First she tried to get out of the Legislature and run for Lieutenant Governor with Thomas Reilly in 2005.  Even though she’s popular in her district and could probably win re-election easily she’s decided against seeking re-election.

“Government is stuck right now…We can’t get it together to make a decision.”

In my conversations with legislators, several have said off the record that in the House a large number of representatives are “demoralized” because so little gets done. The result is that many legislators are deciding against seeking re-election. Read the rest of this entry »

Martha Coakley

One of the interesting numbers in the recent Suffolk University poll, that is not much talked about, is Coakley’s surprisingly high unfavorability numbers.

Q7. Is your opinion of Martha Coakley generally favorable or generally unfavorable?
Never heard …………………….. 1%
Favorable ………………………. 40%
Unfavorable ……………………. 52%
Heard of/Undecided …………… 6%

This is a pretty bad number for someone who was within a few percentage points of winning a senatorship. One thing that is especially bad for Coakley is that just 1% of the respondents had never heard of Coakley. Not surprising after the massive amount of campaign advertising in her recent Senate race. It’s difficult for politicians to improve unfavorability numbers – and especially hard for a prosecutor – unless they get a big case that is out in  front of the public. Read the rest of this entry »

Wrentham Center

An analysis of the campaign financing for the candidates for Scott Brown’s open state Senate seat shows that Richard Ross, Peter Smulowitz and Rich Mitchell have taken almost no contributions from lobbyists or PAC’s. Lida Harkins filings show a disturbing amount of financing by lobbyists and PACs – and a penchant for shopping.

Lets start by looking at the amount of money each candidate had on hand when they last filed disclosures in January:

  • Lida Harkins (D) – $7,192
  • Richard Ross (R) – $14,205
  • Peter Smulowitz (D) – $27,851
  • Rich Mitchell (I)  – Late entrant not yet filed.

Read the rest of this entry »

Deval Patrick

In his monthly appearance on WTKK, today Governor Deval Patrick promised to convene a task force to study Shared Parenting.

A bill on Shared Parenting has appeared before the Legislature for the last several years. It’s before the Legislature again this year in the form of bill H1400. It would create a presumption that in divorce, when there are two fit parents that shared custody, it is in the best interests of children – a finding backed up by most modern studies on child development after divorce. Read the rest of this entry »

Linda Campbell

Linda Campbell will be facing two challengers,  Al DiNuccio (R)  and Hector Montalvo (I).

It may be a tough election for Campbell. Last term she barely squeaked by against Chris DiBella by only 496 votes in the primary. This is a tough year for Democratic incumbents especially in Methuen which went heavily for Scott Brown 64%-32%.

So it’s not surprising that Campbell is distancing herself from the party by calling herself a “very conservative Democrat.” But is she really? Read the rest of this entry »

Eric Dahlberg

From WickedLocal:

The Eric Dahlberg for State Senate campaign last week announced that former Gov. Paul Cellucci has signed on to the campaign’s Steering Committee as honorary co-chairman. Cellucci joins Honorary Chairwoman Lucile “Cile” Hicks, who represented the Third Middlesex District in the State Senate from 1990 to 1996.

With more high profile political support Eric Dahlberg’s campaign keeps getting stronger. Read the rest of this entry »

RSS Massachusetts Election 2010

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  • Clang scan-build: a great C++ Static Analyzer April 21, 2017
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  • Instantiating Components by Name in ReactJS December 30, 2016
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  • Finding the state of TCP/IP Sockets on Linux November 3, 2016
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  • Setting up Docker for Remote Deployment October 16, 2016
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