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2013 elections

Eugene Rivers vows to vote again - when the time is right

Rivers admits to and apologizes for not having voted since 1983, says the causes he supports are more important than his single vote and says he'll vote again when Boston's black and brown communities "exercise electoral discipline" and unify behind a single candidate - no doubt the one he determines is best suited for the job. You know, like Nick Collins in the recent state-senate race.

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Connolly to vote against Cops' raise

Today, Boston Mayoral Candidate John Connolly announced he will vote against the 25% pay raise awarded to the BPD through arbitration. A few days ago, Martin Walsh criticized outgoing Mayor Thomas Menino for acting irresponsibly in his negotiations with police.

To read Connolly's stance click here.


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Election roundup: After much sturm und drang, both candidates now sort of agree on police contract

John Connolly today announced his position on the arbitrator's award in the stalled police contract talks: Both sides should go back to the bargaining table, because cops deserve a contract, but the city can't afford to pay for the arbitrator's award:

I believe that the arbitrator's award is out of line with the current economic environment and not in the best interests of the taxpayers. From the beginning, I have made that clear and called for the Mayor and the BPPA to return to the negotiating table to come up with an agreement that works for the City and honors the hard work of our brave police, who have been without a contract for years. If a majority of the City Council should in fact vote no to the existing agreement, the parties will be forced back to the bargaining table. I will continue to encourage those same parties to honor the basic tenets of collective bargaining and avoid the City Council vote by jointly agreeing to resume negotiations, and for that reason I am going to continue to call for the sides to do that as quickly as possible so that the City Council does not have to intervene. I believe that the best thing for the City and the police is to get back to the bargaining table and agree to a deal that works for both sides.

As David Bernstein notes, however, a possibly key difference is that where Walsh just wants the union and mayor to start talking again, Connolly wants the City Council to formally reject the arbitrator's proposal - which would force the two sides to start bargaining again - much as happened in 2010 with the firefighters, only this time Connolly would get the credit as a leader who can get a contract both sides can live with:

Walsh has not called for the council to vote no. He is, then, calling on the BPPA to VOLUNTARILY go back to negotiate, with no incentive/disincentive to do so. Connolly is saying the council should vote no, and reject the contract, forcing the sides to negotiate again -- and that, to avoid that, the BPPA should make concessions.

Peter Kadzis lists four issues the next mayor will have to deal with. His fellow 'GBHer Callie Crossley urges the winner to hire some of his former rivals.

Candelaria Silva wonders who made Rev. Eugene "Do as I say, not as I do" Rivers the designated spokesman for Boston's black community.

WBUR journeys to East Boston to ponder the neighborhood's casino referendum.

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Citizen complaint of the day: Disappointment doesn't give you the right to be a slob

A politically aware citizen files a complaint from South Boston:

Broken dream left on K street. Please clean up.

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Campaign off to a good start

We've quickly descended into Point/Counterpoint territory on this police arbitrator thing. Both candidates had their say yesterday, then this morning, Walsh blamed Menino.

This afternoon, Connolly fired back:

Our police officers have gone without a raise for years. The question now is whether the arbitrator’s decision strikes the right balance between achieving fiscal responsibility and compensating officers fairly.

“This is an important issue and I am not going to play politics with it. I am not going to make any decisions that will damage the fiscal health of this city. ...

What Marty Walsh did today was just politics. It’s outrageous for Marty Walsh to blame the mayor for putting us in this position. The Mayor offered the Patrolmen a 19% raise, and it was refused. This is not about the Mayor, this is about a broken arbitration process.

Marty Walsh just this year proposed legislation that would take an already broken arbitration process and break it even more. His legislation filed in January would make arbitrators decisions final, and remove the check and balance that a final city council review provides. Today’s statement from Marty is a stunning turnaround, and it’s an example of his actions not backing up his words when it comes to negotiating with labor unions.

“As I have said before, arbitration has its place as a last resort in collective bargaining to make sure that both sides bargain in good faith, but we have to reform the arbitration process so we never wind up in this situation again. If it were up to Marty, the City Council wouldn't even have the opportunity to vote on this contract, and an arbitrator's decision that Marty called 'out of line' would be forced on the people of Boston. Marty is playing politics, I am going to do my job.

To which Walsh retorted:

At a time when people are looking for new leadership to avoid the distractions of protracted contract disputes between people who are supposed to be allies, it is unfortunate that Councilor Connolly has chosen today to launch a political attack rather than tell the residents of Boston where he stands on the arbitrator's decision. I have always believed that arbitration should be a last resort. The facts are clear about the impact of the legislation I’ve filed - the first two requirements are the ability of the city or town to meet the costs of any arbitration decision and that the decision is in the interests and welfare of the public. I believe yesterday's arbitration decision does not meet either of those criteria, which is why I called for the Mayor and the BPPA to return to the bargaining table and negotiate a deal that would better protect the taxpayers while addressing the concerns of our hardworking police officers who have gone years without a new contract. Mayors need to lead, not wait for others to tell them what to do. The residents of the city know where I stand. Unfortunately, they are still waiting to learn where John Connolly stands.

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Walsh blames Menino for arbitrator's police award

If Menino had negotiated in good faith with the patrolmen instead of trying to lord it over them like he owns the joint, the contract never would have gone to an arbitrator, who then would never have ruled officers deserve raises the city can't afford, Walsh said in a statement this morning:

Many working families across the city have seen no raises, or have even seen drops in their family income over the past few years. I believe the raises awarded by the arbitrator are clearly out of line with the current economic environment and unsustainable for the City of Boston. Because Mayor Menino has chosen to pursue irresponsible negotiating tactics, he has put the City in the untenable position of choosing between an exorbitant arbitration award or reneging on the basic tenets of collective bargaining.

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Arbitrator gives police union everything it wanted in a contract and more

The Globe reports an arbitrator sided with the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association on the issue of pay raises and benefits.

The city says the union was seeking about 21.5% increases in salary and benefits increases over six years; the arbitrator said its members deserve more than 25%. If the city council rejects the award, the two sides would go back to the bargaining table - which is what happened with firefighters in 2010.

Both mayoral candidates issued statements. Marty Walsh said he doesn't believe in arbitration and that he would just sit down with union bargainers and bargain until both sides agreed to a contract fair to both union members and taxpayers. John Connolly said he wants to read the arbitrator's decision and meet with the city CFO and union leaders before deciding what to do next.

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Hypocrite: Minister who complains about turnout hasn't voted since 1997

Adrian Walker tweets that the Rev. Eugene Rivers, who screamed from the front page of the Herald that blacks are to blame for Tuesday's results, hasn't voted in well over a decade. And this alleged active backer of Charlotte Golar Richie didn't vote Tuesday, either, yet has the gall to blame backers of other minority candidates for her loss.

Speaking of religion and beams in thine eyes, Howie Carr rants today about alleged Irish bashing at the Globe, yet doesn't mention that the Rivers screed ended with a complaint about how we're going to end up with "a white Irish man" as mayor. But maybe he's just like most people and doesn't read the Herald anymore.

Meanwhile, the Dorchester Reporter is frustrated with the low turnout Tuesday:

To the 70 percent - more than a quarter-million people - who are on the voting rolls but didn’t darken the voting booth on Tuesday: What the hell is wrong with you?

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Herald gets wish: Gloves come off in race for mayor

John Connolly today signaled his disgust with that smiling bald guy who ran all those pro-Walsh ads and others of his ilk; Walsh retorted Connolly's just a corporate lawyer.

Connolly this morning asked Walsh to sign Rob Consalvo's pledge against allowing any third-party expenditures on his behalf:

Between now and November 5, we can have a campaign about the issues. We can have a race about my vision and Marty’s vision for Boston. But to make sure we have this kind of campaign - one that’s not warped by outside special interests - we need to follow the example set by past campaigns here in Massachusetts and put a stop to spending by outside groups.

It worked for Elizabeth Warren and Scott Brown. It worked for Ed Markey and Steve Lynch. It can work for me and Marty. It is the new standard by which races in Massachusetts are conducted.

Connolly noted that while he refused to actually sign a piece of paper previously - in fact, he called Consalvo's idea a "gimmick" - he did reject a planned $500,000 push from a pro-charter-school group and then said he would ask any outside groups to stay away.

Walsh fired back that Connolly's engaging in a bit of sophistry because the pledge allows for paid canvassers - which he impugned Connolly needs while he doesn't, since he has so many actual volunteers:

And now - what a surprise - yesterday, we saw an advertisement from a third-party organization looking to hire Connolly canvassers. This is a great second act in John’s ongoing piece of political theater. This is what corporate lawyers do. He was right when he said it was a gimmick. He flip-flopped. I agreed with him when he said it was a gimmick. Let’s talk about the issues - ALL of the issues.

To which the Connolly camp replies:

In July Representative Walsh said he would sign the pledge if the other candidates would agree to sign the pledge. John will sign a pledge, so that should satisfy him -- he's the only other candidate in the race now. It’s not clear what has changed in the last couple of months that Representative Walsh now says he won’t sign a pledge. Marty should join John in signing the pledge so we can keep special interest money out of this race and focus on the issues that matter.

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Election roundup: These are the days number nerds live for

So let's dive right into the numbers from Tuesday: Massterlist provides a map showing which wards Connolly and Walsh won after filtering out the results from the other 10 candidates. Not surprisingly, Walsh was big in Dorchester, Connolly in West Roxbury - but check out how well Walsh did in comparison to Connolly in parts of Roslindale and Hyde Park.

Chris Lovett graphs some numbers, notes turnout this year was lower than in the last open preliminary in 1993, even though we have more voters now.

The city's posted numbers for each precinct, but in PDF, rather than the more easily played-with CSV.

The Dorchester Reporter tells us where the other candidates did well - after first marveling at the Walsh ground game.

Larry DiCara says it was organization and GOTV that carried the day for the two.

David Bernstein considers city-council races, notes the at-large part will probably consist two olds (Murphy and - he's back - Flaherty) and two youngs (Pressley and Wu).

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Walsh, Connolly agree: They're not doing another 50 forums

The two campaigns issued a joint statement tonight that instead of the endless series of forums they went through leading up to the preliminary, they want to do just three televised debates:

After discussions between our campaigns, we agree that televised debates will provide an important forum for voters to gain the information they need to make an informed decision in November’s mayoral election. In addition, we believe that these debates would offer a broader platform for the many community groups wishing to have their substantive issues discussed during the campaign.

Given the many demands on our campaigns, we request that the media consortiums that have organized candidate debates in the past come together to organize -- in conjunction with community and advocacy groups -- three televised debates between now and November 5th, one each during the weeks of October 14, 21, and 28. We ask that community groups wishing to organize forums or discussions cooperate with media organizations to make sure these are substantive debates.

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Election roundup: One race ends, another begins

Final (if still unofficial) city and districtwide results. The city has yet to release ward-by-ward numbers, but NorthEndWaterfront.com tallied them for the North End, Beacon Hill and downtown.

Jim O'Sullivan ponders the race geographically, since it pits two guys who don't live anywhere near the geographic center of the city. He notes that while Walsh beat Connolly bigtime in Dorchester, Connolly won almost as impressively in the rest of the city.

The Herald, being the Herald, casts the race as a cage death match and expresses its hope for some bloody class warfare, noting that Walsh is "scrappy," while Connolly is "Harvard educated."

The New York Times wades in, provides its obligatory reference to busing in the 1970s.

So Dan Conley won't be our next mayor, but he could be on the next Dancing with the Stars.

Ayanna Pressley topped the at-large ballot, which means she automatically gets onto the list of potential mayoral candidates in 2017.

James Aloisi looks at the mayoral election of 1913/1914, which gave us James Michael Curley.

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Boston to get first Irish-American mayor in 20 years


The November elections will pit state Rep. Marty Walsh of Dorchester against City Councilor John Connolly of West Roxbury for the right to succeed Mayor Tom Menino.

City returns show Walsh won the preliminary with a small lead over Connolly.

In the at-large race, voters will get to choose between Pressley, Flaherty, Murphy, Wu, Keogh, Jeff Ross, George and Kelly.

In district races, McCarthy and Sanon will face off in District 5 (Hyde Park, Roslindale, Mattapan); Zakim and Nichols in District 8 (Back Bay, Beacon Hill, Fenway, Mission Hill). In District 4, Yancey (who got fewer votes citywide than Althea Garrison), will face Williams. And in District 1, it's LaMattina vs. Gannon.

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Our most dramatic precinct?

Voting in Boston election

David Wittenberg captured the scene today at the precinct at the State House.

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On Election Day, people in West Roxbury keep it under their hats

Bill Walczak and a Walsh supporter

At Holy Name School in West Roxbury this morning, a Walsh supporter in a bowler had a nice chat with Bill Walczak about how JFK ruined the American hat industry.

Another voter dressed in her Tuesday finest to cast her vote, then exited past Dan Conley, doing a little politicking a bit closer than 150 feet to the entrance to the polls, as is the tradition there:

Woman in hat after voting at Holy Name.

What are you seeing at the polls?

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West Roxbury sign wall filling up fast

Campaign signs at Holy Name in West Roxbury

Wise campaigners know not to dally when it comes to the wall in front of Holy Name School at the intersection of Centre Street and West Roxbury Parkway - Election Day would be too late to get a good position.

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Election roundup: Conley goes for the Palm Beach vote; Walsh wants to school johns

The Conley camp has posted this helpful video for people unsure how to fill in an oval:

Marty Walsh yesterday came out against prostitution, says part of his effort to curb commercial sex would focus on customers, by setting up "John Schools" or "a mandatory diversion curriculum for first-time sex buyers."

Waslh would also increase the number of BPD detectives going after online and hotel-based prostitution and would penalize hotels and lodging houses that don't do enough to keep the sex workers out.

The Globe has a tool that lets you compare candidates on their positions.

At a recent forum at Boston Latin School, David Wyatt talked about more than just the fact he's a pro-life Republican.

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Election roundup: Publishers of two newspapers endorse Ross in one, Connolly in the other

In Bay Windows, Sue O'Connell and Jeff Coakley endorsed Mike Ross:

A strong mayor needs empathy along with leadership. Ross has consistently and reliably been a leader on LGBT issues—most recently on the challenges facing our community's senior population. As mayor, his experience in both public and private life would positively inform his leadership of the city.

O'Connell and Coakley also own the South End News, and there they endorsed John Connolly:

His much publicized exposure of the waste in the school lunch program, his clashes with Menino, the Boston public school administration, and the Teachers Union prove that he is an elected official not afraid to shake up the status quo to get things done. And that’s exactly the type of leadership Boston needs, and deserves.

State Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz and state Rep. Russell Holmes endorsed Charlotte Golar Richie yesterday. State Rep. Byron Rushing has endorsed Felix Arroyo.

In the Globe, Larry Harmon writes that Golar Richie's campaign sucks so hard it makes him question her ability to be mayor:

Golar Richie's inability to seize this moment has surprised and saddened many who have watched and respected her for more than 20 years. If Golar Richie manages to make it into the final election, it will be because people like the idea of her candidacy more than they like her ideas.

The Dorchester Reporter issues no endorsements because there are just too many good candidates.

Dan Conley has LGBT friends.

The Boston Courant jams with Connolly.

WBUR reports on the last major debate before the election, held last night, says the mostly convivial banter was interrupted only with disagreements over various facets of the casino issue.

The Globe sums up the 19 candidates for four at-large seats.

The Herald enorsed Murphy, Pressley, Frattaroli and Wu. For the at-large council seats, Bay Windows likes Pressley, Murphy, Wu and Flaherty.

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Election roundup: Of transportation and illegal chickens

The Globe reports on a transportation forum, in which Marty Walsh said 30 m.p.h. is too fast for most Boston streets, John Barros blasted Walsh and Menino for not doing more to get more T funding and John Connolly and Felix Arroyo praised true dedicated bike lanes.

Connolly, Walsh and Charlotte Golar Richie are the leaders in a WBUR poll.

Golar Richie fan Margery Eagan writes Rob Consalvo and Arroyo just lost the election by taking the endorsement of a bunch of "teenage thugs," i.e., the Boston Teachers Union.

Candidates participated in a forum at Boston Latin School the other day. Among the many issues: Chickens being kept illegally in Boston. Golar Richie declared herself against illegal chickens, but said she wouldn't send police out after them. Instead, she called for beefed up animal control services to pluck them out.

The city council yesterday approved a measure by Arroyo to limit city funds to banks that can prove they are investing money in Boston neighborhoods. The proposed ordinance now goes to Menino.

The South End News endorsed Connolly:

His much publicized exposure of the waste in the school lunch program, his clashes with Menino, the Boston public school administration, and the Teachers Union prove that he is an elected official not afraid to shake up the status quo to get things done. And that's exactly the type of leadership Boston needs, and deserves.

The Walsh campaign has gone to the dogs.

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Election roundup: Teachers to issue emergency endorsement for Arroyo, Consalvo; Hyde Park business owner pissed at Conley

The Boston Teachers Union's leadership will ask for the vote during a regular union meeting this afternoon, a couple days after the Globe endorsed Connolly and Barros, both of whom want to see more charter schools in Boston, an idea that offends the union's sensibilities. Consalvo and Arroyo, both of whom say they would oppose an expansion of the number of charter-school seats, are expected to be on hand around 4:45 p.m. after the vote.

Meanwhile, the Network for Public Education, which is headed by a rich New Yorker who actually opposes charter schools, endorsed Consalvo:

He has stated that he does not believe in raising the cap on the number of charter schools in Boston. He believes that schools should offer students comprehensive curricula and that we must examine our over-reliance on standardize testing - the data and results of which should only be shared outside of the school system (with companies like inBloom and Amplify) with parental consent.

Based on the reaction John Connolly got when a national pro-charter group said it would throw tons of money his way, the group adds its endorsement does not come with any money or paid workers attached.

Mike Ross says he wants to see Boston with 1 million residents by 2025:

This is an ambitious goal, but I believe in a metropolitan future for Boston. Growing our city is how we will create jobs, actually stop the rising cost of housing, and bring in the needed revenue to fund my priorities like universal pre-K education and expanding the MBTA.

If we do this right, rents go down, our tax base increases, and we create thousands of jobs for new and current residents. This won't happen all at once. It's a lofty goal to push us in the right direction and a plan for long-term growth.

A Herald poll shows Connolly with a small but growing lead.

Dan Conley has a five-point plan for Hyde Park (see attached, below), where he grew up and which he represented as a city councilor before becoming DA and moving to West Roxbury. But one Hyde Park business owner says he better add a sixth point: Remove her theater from his mailing to Hyde Parksters:

For 8 years Dan Conley represented Hyde Park on the City Council and he never showed any interest in the Everett Theater. Last year, we took the first step in revitalizing the Everett Theater when we unveiled the vintage lighted sign that Dan Conley shows in his mailer. Dan Conley did not have anything to do with getting the funding for that sign, but Rob Consalvo and Mayor Menino did. It's hard to believe Dan would 'take the lead' to restore my theater as mayor, as his campaign literature says, when, for all his time on the council and his many years as a Hyde Park resident before he moved to West Roxbury, he showed no interest in the revitalization of the Everett Theatre.

David Bernstein surveys the mess of a campaign he says Charlotte Golar Richie has run and says maybe Consalvo should stick to rubber sidewalks rather than making grand but vague pronouncements on things that could really cost the city money.

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