Starting this week I’m going to recap our top weekly original content. Without further ado here it is.
DD4RP: You have successfully passed two major pieces of legislation on Beacon Hill: creating charitable license plates and tougher sex offender laws (Jessica’s Law) to protect young children. How have you been able to pass these bills with such heavy Democratic majorities?
KARYN POLITO: Getting these bills passed took a lot of passion, commitment, drive and energy on behalf of legislators and the grassroots. In each case, the power of the grassroots and getting people involved in the cause was essential. These proposals were not Republican ideas, they were not Democrat ideas, they were just good public policy. I worked hard and focused on the goal of getting something accomplished.
Sometimes, getting bills passed in the Democrat-controlled legislature is also about compromise. With the Red Sox plate bill, we broke through a logjam and established a new procedure that requires any group looking to create a special plate to provide 1200 pledges in order for the plate to be made. This protects the Registry of Motor Vehicles from losing any upfront costs and provides a commitment that they will not be out of pocket for expenses.
The Red Sox plate is like an annuity in that all the proceeds of plate renewals beyond the initial cost of making the plate ($12) go directly to the Jimmy Fund. So far, the bill has resulted in over $2 million being donated to charity.
Although Jessica’s Law afforded better protections for our children from child sex offenders, the Democratic majority was unwilling to pass the full bill or an accountability amendment I proposed to require each district attorney to measure the success they have under the new law. Through a lot of hard work and public support, we were able to broker a compromise that included the amendment and allowed a significant portion of the bill to be signed into law.
Karyn Polito warned us about what is really the cost of Governor Patrick’s gas hike.
Yesterday, I posted a column on my Web site calling upon Governor Patrick to come up with a plan for fixing our crumbling transportation infrastructure in this state. It was my hope that his plan would focus on reform instead of new revenue as a smart solution to our transportation problems.
What a difference a day makes.
Today, we are waking up to news in the Boston Globe that the governor is mulling over plans which could impose an incredible 29 cent increase in the state gasoline tax, which would more than double the current 21.5 cent tax and make Massachusetts’ gas tax the most costly in the nation at 50.5 cents per gallon.
The South Shore Republican, wrote another article in his series on potential state-wide candidates. This week it was Paul Cellucci who was profiled.
n the past few months Governor Cellucci has declined to engage in speculation and has repeatedly said he has no interest in running again. Still however, many Bay State pols and other potential candidates for the United State Senate or for Governor have stated they might be interested in running, if Paul Cellucci decides not to. Add that to the fact that Massachusetts National Committeeman Ron Kaufman, when recently asked about our Republican “bench” of potential candidates, mentioned Cellucci’s name as one of the first on the list. Could the man who has never lost an election in 30 years of Massachusetts politics (an astonishing accomplishment for a Republican) be making a comeback? Time will have to tell. Paul Cellucci is one of the classiest public servants in the entire state, and he would be the last person to publicly line up his cards for the seat held by an ill Senator Kennedy. Still however, if such a seat were to open up Paul Cellucci would have to be considered the titan of Republican candidates, just as he would be if he decided to run for Governor again.
The Angelic One wrote a heartfelt challenge to the Massachusetts GOP and it’s legislators. In “Beacon Hill GOP Content to Wait for it’s own Godot” the Angelic One challenged the GOP to lead through ideas.
So what do the leaders of Beacon Hill’s minority party do? Brad Jones of the House of Representatives issued a press release in which Jones rightly reprimanded the governor & refused to support Patrick’s proposals:
“I…have called on Governor Patrick to show real leadership, to grab onto the idea of reform and run with it. In fact, we have been waiting for nearly 18 months for a plan.”
Waiting 18 months? What a damning admission of passivity & fecklessness! Jones (& Senate Minority Leader Richard Tisei) should have their own counterproposals ready to be rolled out. They should be working the media relentlessly to give voice to the voters who feel betrayed by Patrick & outraged at the contempt he exhibits towards them with his brain-dead proposals. They should be providing talking points to the GOP town/ward/city committees across the state so that said committees can whip up public opposition to Patrick’s proposal while at the same time building momentum for the Republican counterproposal.
Oh, wait. The GOP still doesn’t have one – after 18 months! And the party still wonders why voters are loathe to align themselves with a party which is perceived to be a group of whining dilettantes?
Brock Cordeiro brought us bad news. That Ken Pittman’s child is ill and has been hospitalized at Childrens in Boston.
Anyway, I’m posting this particular blog diary in hopes of asking for a favor, specifically your prayers for Marty, Ken’s 3-year-old son.
I don’t know the details but other friends have mentioned to me, and I’m not outing anything as Phil Paleologos is guest hosting for Ken today & Phil is discussing it on the radio, that Ken and his wife, Andrea, are currently up at Children’s Hospital Boston as Marty was rushed up there with an obviously serious illness.
RMG made the news in New York this week for our trip out to the NY20 special election. This is a winnable seat and we should all be helping.
The trip Rob Willington and I took to NY20 this past weekend is making news. The Daily Gazette of Schenectady, NY has the story.
Red Mass Group, which two years ago launched a Web site promoting Republican candidates in Massachusetts, is stepping out of its state borders for the first time to push Tedisco.
The group’s owner, Rob Eno of East Boston, drove to a Tedisco campaign stop in Rensselaer County Saturday and recorded two videos of the assemblyman for his Web site.
The article also quotes video from Rob Wilington. The article further talks about our hopeful efforts to have members of this website go out to NY20 in March to help Jim. This race is winnable and we should do all we can to help. If you’ve not seen the videos, I’ve put them after the jump again. The first thing you can do is click on the graphic in the upper right of this web-page and give $20 for NY20.
Finally, Richard Greely is running for the seat vacated as a result of Larry Novack’s legal difficulties. Richard announced his candidacy on RMG.
Today, I am pleased to announce my candidacy for the now vacated Massachusetts Republican State Committee seat representing the 2nd Plymouth and Bristol District. I seek this position in order to help right, strengthen and build our Party. We must work together to break the strangle hold Democrats have on our State Legislature and local governments. For Massachusetts to survive, it must have a viable two-party system, and we can be the catalysts for that vital change.
We must not be intimidated by the power of the opposition, but rather we must rise as a significant force driven by the conservative ideals that have made our Party, State and Nation great. These ideals are individual liberty, low taxes and less government, personal responsibility, and steadfast support for the wage earners of this Commonwealth, all underscored by high ethical standards.