Friday, September 17, 2010

Democray from the bottom up, McKenna challanges Coakley

Secretary of State William F. Galvin confirmed yesterday that James P. McKenna, 49, a write-in candidate from Central Massachusetts received more than 10,000 votes in Tuesday’s primary, enabling him to qualify for a spot on the ballot in the general election. The Millbury lawyer is only the second politician since the 1970s to vault onto the ballot as a statewide write-in candidate.

Although the battle is a steep one for the political unknown, McKenna’s foray into the race seems to have upended Coakley’s political assumptions for a second time this year. When she was thought to be running unopposed, Coakley agreed to a participate in a public finance campaign that will cap her campaign spending at $625,000. This could leave her vulnerable to an onslaught of advertising if outside groups weigh in on her campaign, as they did in the US Senate race.

Give credit to Mr. McKenna for trying to compete and give voters a choice in Novemeber. Sticker campaigns do work and it's great to see the passion of a candidate who really wants the job.

king of patronage’’ in Western Mass has to testify

From the Globe:

The state’s high court yesterday rejected a bid by state Representative Thomas M. Petrolati to avoid answering questions about his efforts to place friends, relatives, and political supporters in state probation jobs.

Just two days after hearing arguments, the Supreme Judicial Court denied Petrolati’s effort to block a subpoena from the independent counsel investigating allegedly corrupt hiring practices within the agency, ruling that his testimony is “plainly within the scope of the administrative inquiry ordered by this court.’’

Petrolati, the third-ranking member of the House of Representatives, must now appear before the independent counsel, Paul Ware, who said he will seek to schedule his testimony within three weeks. Petrolati must either answer Ware’s questions under oath or refuse by asserting his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

Petrolati’s wife, a former aide, the husband of a current aide, and more than 90 of his financial backers were hired or promoted while O’Brien headed the agency. Petrolati has refused requests for interviews, but in written responses denied having undue influence over the agency and said he recommends only people who are qualified.

Reason number 3 to vote out all who support this way of life on Beacon Hill.