Five Things you should know today, November 12, 2012

Now that the election season is over, we are back with the Five Things you should know.  Today’s is a little late but will be earlier going forward.

1. The sky has not fallen

In a very tough year nationally, the MassGOP only lost a net of four seats in the legislature.  This is after a concerted effort by the SEIU, MassTeachers, and others to unseat our newly elected representatives.  In the end they were only able to unseat three reps in tough districts for us.  We are still at higher numbers in the legislature than we’ve been in a generation on the House side.  2014 will be a great year, but we need to start the work now.

2. More “Fattman Republicans”

One of the more interesting things that happened to me on election night was telling Democratic State Committeewoman Mara Dolan that Ryan Fattman had won.  She seemed genuinely surprised.  Not only did Ryan win, he won with 70% of the vote.  Jeff Jacoby sees a way forward for the MassGOP, the “Fattman Republican” model.

Maybe what it really needs are more “Fattman Republicans.”

Ryan Fattman is a young state representative from Sutton, first elected to the Legislature two years ago and reelected last week with 70 percent of the vote despite a strong Democratic challenge. Talk to Fattman about Republican prospects in Massachusetts, and he doesn’t bend your ear with laments about a toxic “brand” or how the national GOP platform is too extreme. He talks instead about liberty, limited government, and low taxes. About how the “R” after hisname stands for “reform.” About how Massachusetts is one of the most difficult states to do business in, thanks to a Democratic monopoly that is “intrusive and expensive.”

Instead of trying to recruit big names to run for office, Fattman says, the state GOP should be focused on the grass roots. The party needs candidates with close ties to their communities and the patience to learn the political ropes. But above all it needs candidates who can explain, with enthusiasm and clarity, what Republicans are offering: a Massachusetts “that empowers its citizens with autonomy and initiative.”

What’s wrong with Bay State Republicans is that too many of them just want to be on the winning side. Fattman knows why he wants to win and why he wants to do so with an “R” after his name.

3. Deval’s DPH in the spotlight

Hearings are set this week on the New England Compounding Center scandal.  Deval Patrick’s Department of Public Health played a significant role in this scandal, focusing on social issues instead of doing their job.  It will be interesting to see if the legislature uses it’s power to swear the actors in, to ensure that the truth is told.

4. Bob DeLeo’s one man “trade mission” to Italy

State House News Service is reporting that Speaker of the House Bob DeLeo is traveling to Italy this week on a one-man trade mission.

— House Speaker Robert DeLeo is headed for Italy next week on what he’s calling an “economic mission” that will take him to Milan, Turin, Rome and Naples. Aides said DeLeo is not traveling with any other public officials.

When you call your vacation an “economic mission” you can use your campaign account to pay for it.  Sneaky man that Bob DeLeo.

5. State Tax Collections fall a quarter billion short

In a sign that the State’s economy may be slowing down, Tax revenues are falling a quarter of a billion dollars below revenue estimates, so says State House News Service.

State tax collections are running more than a quarter billion dollars behind projections only four months into fiscal 2013 and Gov. Deval Patrick’s budget aides say mid-year spending cuts are more likely, and sooner rather than later.

About Rob "EaBo Clipper" Eno

  • Deval Patrick’s Department of Public Health played a significant role in this scandal, focusing on social issues instead of doing their job.

    Right, we’ve got to remember that it’s the Democrats who have been “focusing on social issues.”  So Edfactor’s diary a few days ago kind of leaves that out. HE wrote “When someone is asked, in 2030, what happened to our culture, what will they say?” He completely leaves out the most obvious one: we only cared about gay rights and transgenderism and erasing gender roles and making everyone approve of homosexuality and gay marriage. It’s social conservatives who are saying, hey guys, the world is falling apart and there are more important things than eliminating gender and marriage rights. It’s pretty clear who the scapegoats will be in 20 years, and I think it’s unfair.

  • Ryan Fattman & Keiko Orrall are the future of the party.  They won because they work hard to serve their constituents and treat their public service as even more than a full time job.  The Republican establishment should learn what it means to be a real Republican.

  • MerrimackMan

    However, Fattman can get 70% because he represents the third most conservative district in the state.

    But here’s why the Mass GOP is pathetic. Scott Brown took 60% of the vote in 2010 (Sorry, the 2012 data isn’t ready yet) in 48 districts, we hold just 27 of them. If we could solidify the “Base” Districts, we’d need just 6 more seats for 54. We already have two districts where Brown scored less than 60% (O’Connell and Beaton). With the exception of guys like Ryan Fattman, we don’t even know how to piece through victories on our own turf…

  • edfactor

    Rob –

    It is too bad that the gravity of what happened is not obvious to you, as it is to everyone outside the Republican activist core. You predicted that we would gain seats in the House this year. You predicted a hard-fought Scott Brown win. You thought Tisei could do it, though you weren’t optimistic. You thought our home state governor could beat President Obama. I doubt you would have predicted Sean Bielat going from a 12 point loss in 2010 to a 25 point loss in 2012. I doubt you would have predicted the margins that Sheldon and Golnik lost by. Praise Ryan Fattman all you want. He’s a hell of a guy and I am a huge fan. But him and Jim Lyons are the exceptions that prove the rule, not the model for the far-less-friendly other 75% of the state.

    Worse than that, there is a now a national consensus that positions on abortion, gay marriage, and immigration are now killing us. Also that we are too old and too white in a diverse America. Nowhere in America are these bigger problems than here. And look at the acknowledgment! Several negative stories in the Boston Globe. Holly Robichaud losing her composure and blasting the voters like a petulant child.

    So what would you consider the sky falling? Losing every house and senate seat and a suicide bombing of Merrimac Street by an Occupy Boston protester?

    We have passed a tipping point. The Massachusetts electorate and the National GOP have been slowly moving apart for years now. What finally happened in 2012 is that they are now so far apart, that even talented, well-funded candidates cannot create a winning coalition to win higher office anymore, no matter how far they distance themselves from the noxious brand.

    What you don’t realize is the incredibly negative effect on morale this will have on Republicans everywhere. You don’t even see what losing statewide relevance will do to our media coverage, our fundraising, and our image. The middle-of-the-road people will abandon us. Lots of activists won’t see the point of sacrificing family time to help anymore. We will actually accelerate into being something like the green party, where winning is no longer the goal for the vast majority of races. For example, look how few seats were even contested this year! Do you think we will now have more people willing to waste their time? No – we will have fewer candidates. Sure, you might get lots of sacrificial lambs. But we will become a party of sheep.

    This is why, if the MassGOP is to have a future, we must break from the culture of the national party and build something new. (Forgot to mention, I have spoken to some CRs and YRs. If we adopt the national party platform tomorrow, they have told me they are done.)

    But if we do rebuild something more inclusive and distinct from the GOP, it will be something guys like you will like – eventually. But we will have better government. And that was what the damned party was for in the first place, not to wage a religiously-inspired culture war.