ICYMI: Democrats Slam Coakley For Letting Lobbyists Off Easy

August 22, 2014    

Emmalee Kalmbach
617-523-5005 ext. 245

Galvin Accuses Coakley of Hiding Deal, Launches Investigation To Clear Up “Questions” 

BOSTON –  Fellow Democrats, including Secretary of State Bill Galvin, are questioning Attorney General Martha Coakley’s integrity after she agreed to a lenient settlement with friendly lobbyists accused of charging illegal lobbying fees to a children’s hospital. Galvin, whose office regulates lobbyists, even alleged Coakley hid the sweetheart deal from him by announcing the slap-on-the-wrist deal with the lobbyists in a Friday bad news dump.

The Boston Herald: “A miffed Secretary of State William F. Galvin — calling his office ‘the primary regulator of lobbyists’ — said he was kept completely in the dark about Attorney General Martha Coakley’s controversial settlement with Beacon Hill lobbying firm The Brennan Group over possibly illegal fees to a children’s hospital.

‘“We found out at five minutes of five on Friday like everyone else,’ Galvin told the Herald yesterday, in a dig at the classic end-of-week news dump pols use to try to slip potentially damaging information by the public. ‘I was surprised — but I’ll stop there. … Usually we work together. I’ll stop at saying I was surprised.’”

State House News Service: “The two Democrats running to replace Attorney General Martha Coakley on Thursday raised questions about a civil settlement her office recently reached with a lobbying firm.

“Both prefaced criticism by saying it was based on what they had read in published reports about the settlement, with Maura Healey, a former prosecutor who worked for Coakley until late last year, stating Coakley didn’t go far enough in the case, and former Sen. Warren Tolman saying he had concerns ‘at first blush.’”

The Boston Globe: “Massachusetts Secretary of State William F. Galvin criticized Attorney General Martha Coakley’s handling of a case involving a prominent lobbyist Wednesday and launched his own inquiry into the lobbyist’s activities.

“The move added to a simmering controversy about Coakley’s settlement with lobbyist John Brennan, a former state representative and state senator, just weeks before Coakley faces Democratic primary voters in the gubernatorial election.

‘“The agreement raises more questions than it answers,’ said Galvin, in an interview.”


MassGOP Chair Kirsten Hughes Calls On Coakley To Return Teamsters $15K After Members Harassed Woman, Hurled Homophobic Slurs

August 21, 2014

Emmalee Kalmbach
617-523-5005 ext. 245

BOSTON- Today, MassGOP Chairman Kirsten Hughes condemned the anti-women and anti-gay actions of the Teamsters Local 25 union and called on Attorney General Martha Coakley to return $15,000 she took from the union earlier this year. Multiple media outlets reported today that the union members hurled homophobic insults and harassed a woman working on the set of a television show. According to OCPF, Martha Coakley took $15,000 from the union on January 30, 2014.

“Harassing women and using homophobic slurs is disgraceful and just plain wrong,” said Kirsten Hughes, MassGOP Chairman. “As a woman, I sincerely hope Martha Coakley will return the money she received from this group which displayed despicable behavior towards woman and towards the gay community.

Teamsters Local 25 harassed a female TV host and hurled homophobic slurs at workers in Milton recently. “The picketers lobbed sexist, racist and homophobic slurs at the rest of the cast and crew for most of the day, the website reported, and when production wrapped, the ‘Top Chef’ crew found that tires were slashed on 14 of their cars. Milton police confirmed that the union members were ‘threatening, heckling and harassing’ but said no arrests were made.” (Gayle Fee, “Padma Lakshmi and ‘Top Chef’ crew find Local flavor bitter,” The Boston Herald, 8/21/14)Martha Coakley took $15,000 from Teamsters Local 25 on January 30, 2014. (Source: OCPF)


In Case You Missed It! Boston Herald Calls Out Sen. Markey’s Hypocrisy

August 19, 2014    

Emmalee Kalmbach
617-523-5005 ext. 245

BOSTON – The Boston Herald called out the “king of the Hill” Senator Ed Markey’s double standard today when they highlighted his call for campaign finance reform while, at the same time, happily collecting millions from outside lobbying firms.

“Senator Ed Markey represents everything that is wrong in Washington. Senator Markey has spent 38 years hoodwinking the people of the Commonwealth, and he clearly has no problem taking money hand over fist while trying to pawn himself off as a champion of campaign finance,” said Kirsten Hughes, MassGOP chairman. “It’s time to elect new leadership in this state — leadership that puts people first not politics.”

Cashman: Dems bank on hypocrisy in fundraising
The Boston Herald
By, Jaclyn Cashman

“Check your spam email. U.S. Sen. Edward J. Markey is pushing for campaign finance reform and asking supporters to help put an end to billionaires like the Koch brothers swaying elections.

“Yes, the same Ed Markey who is king of the Hill when it comes to collecting campaign cash from registered D.C. lobbyists.

“Yet, he’s attacking the “big, bad” Republican donors and not their wealthy Democratic counterparts.

“In an email yesterday, Markey said, “Ever since Citizens United became the law of the land, two billionaire brothers have loomed large in American politics. Their names are Charles and David Koch, and thanks in part to the hundreds of millions of dollars they’ve spent to influence our elections, we now run the risk of seeing our democracy become an auction. I’m joining with some of my colleagues to support campaign finance reform and Koch-free elections. Click here to add your name to ours.”

“The Koch brothers have written plenty of checks to Democratic candidates including President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Dianne Feinstein and Chuck Schumer.
They have even influenced races in Massachusetts. Koch Industries donated $1,000 to Niki Tsongas’ campaign in 2010, according to opensecrets.org.”

“The DCCC raised a record $11.5 million in July, outraising the National Republican Congressional Committee by $3.5 million. So are we to believe that none of that money came in from wealthy Americans trying to keep Dems in Washington?

“Of course not! Both parties rely on big corporations and deep-pocketed donors to help fund their campaigns. The Democrats have just done a better job of vilifying the other side.”

(Click here to read the full story.)



ICYMI: Coakley Lurches Left With Illegal Immigrant Drivers Licenses Flip-Flop

August 18, 2014    

Emmalee Kalmbach
617-523-5005 ext. 245

BOSTON – The Boston Herald pointed out Attorney General Martha Coakley is veering to the extreme liberal-left with her recent announcement she would create another state job to implement drivers’ licenses for illegal immigrants. The move to placate the far left wing of her party substantiates fears Coakley would have to take positions unpopular with the general electorate to survive the heated primary according, the Boston Herald.

“Only Martha Coakley could make a terrible decision like licensing illegal immigrants worse by calling for a new job within state government to do it,” said Kirsten Hughes, MassGOP Chairman. “From her promise to increase state spending by $2 Billion, to her promise to raise taxes, ‘it’s not illegal to be illegal’ Coakley is showing just how out of touch she is as she panders to the left wing of her party.”

Coakley’s left turn
by Matt Stout

With gubernatorial candidates Steve Grossman and Berwick campaigning to the left of Martha Coakley for months — and Grossman especially challenging her liberal chops — one theory was that the Democratic primary could pull the attorney general left of center ahead of her expected general election fight with Republican Charlie Baker.

Last week, Coakley completed a shift that she hinted at as early as March when she said she’d create a new position dubbed the director of immigrant and community safety that, in part, would figure out how to “pave the way” for illegal immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses.

A bill on the topic collapsed in the Legislature earlier this year, and Coakley, who had been opposed to the measure, has now shifted to saying it’s “clear” to her that something needs to be done for “people who need to get to work, people who have medical emergencies, particularly because we have no national solution to pathways to immigration for people and families who have been here paying taxes, working hard.”

Her campaign sought to clarify the remarks, saying in a statement that without federal action on immigration issues, “states now have to take the lead on addressing the challenges facing the immigrant community.” Either way, it immediately gave the Baker campaign a chance to attack her on what it called a “flip-flop” and highlight Baker’s opposition.

(Click here for the full story) 


ICYMI!  Boston Globe Finds GOP Voter Intensity Soaring, Dems Malaise Dragging Down Ticket

August 15, 2014    

Emmalee Kalmbach
617-523-5005 ext. 245                      

For Democrats, a lack of sizzle this summer

By Jim O’Sullivan


A candidate lineup that has not, to put it politely, exactly set the electorate on fire. Voters beleaguered by an oft-joyless parade of contiguous elections. A series of mismanagement scandals under the current administration. And an intraparty horserace for governor that has been static for months.

Four weeks before the Sept. 9 Democratic primary, multiple factors have created the prospect of turnout that day that’s anything but robust.

And competitors in the junior-varsity matchups have begun taking note. None would go on the record, of course, for fear of alienating supporters of fellow Democrats, but several of the other candidates running statewide expressed clear concerns about a lack of interest.

“I don’t think Secretary Galvin will have to print extra ballots,” cracked on such candidate.

“I see it,” the candidate added. “I hear it all over the state. People are not necessarily enthused about one candidate as much as they’re eliminating other candidates, and that’s a problem for the party. Just go to Worcester and ask people.”

The decisions made down-ballot could have hefty implications for the top of the ticket come November.

A second Democrat also running statewide cited the fact that Attorney General Martha Coakley has held such a steady, commanding lead in the polls over Treasurer Steve Grossman and, running third, former federal health care administrator Don Berwick.

“People pay attention when there’s a competitive race,” the second candidate said. “They’ll pay attention in the fall, but they aren’t right now. Add that to apathy and exhaustion and voters’ interest levels, and it’s a dangerous combination when picking a ticket.”

According to the weekly Globe poll that began in early June, Democratic voters have consistently trailed Republicans in a key gauge of passion. About a quarter of Republicans consistently rate themselves at the highest point on a 0-to-10 enthusiasm metric, stacked against less than 15 percent of Democrats. When pollsters ask how likely respondents are to vote, a slightly higher percentage of Republican voters consistently call themselves definite or probable voters.

Public attentiveness will tick up, particularly as the ads begin crowding the airwaves. But Secretary of State William F. Galvin said that requests for absentee ballots, an early indicator of voter enthusiasm, tracked well below previous years. “The statewide, so far, hasn’t really done much to excite people,” he said.

A paucity of local races, together with the overall sense of electoral malaise, will likely put Democratic primary turnout far closer to the 2010 clip — when just two statewide seats were contested — than 2006, when more than 920,000 turned out, Galvin predicted.

“So far, it’s not exactly overwhelming,” he noted. And he was talking about the pace of requests for absentee ballots, but could have been describing the entire political year so far.