Tomorrow morning at about 7:00 I will be lined up at the Shrewsbury Town Hall to cast my ballot for Charlie Baker. Here’s why:
First and foremost, over the past four years, Charlie had been active in the Republican Party and has helped candidates at every step of the way. He has not drawn a line at establishment candidates for his support. He has supported conservative candidates and causes time and time again. He’s done so with time as well as treasure. He’s donated to conservative leaning organizations, like the Marlborough Republican City Committee, as well as to candidates. He’s door knocked, in inner cities with young conservative candidates.
It is that last part that has really struck me over these past few years. There has been no bigger cheerleader for the young conservatives who have put their names on the line. People like Ryan Fattman, Evan Kenney, Leah Cole, Carol Claros, and even Joe Sheehan – even after 2010. In conversations I’ve had with Charlie his eyes light up most when talking about the future leaders of our party.
Charlie does the right thing, even when other’s aren’t looking. I’ve said it a million times but it bears repeating here again. When the establishment of our party was looking to decertify the “Ronald Reagan Liberty Delegate” slate to the National Convention in 2012. Charlie Baker would have no part of it. He told Party Leaders that he would not take Evan Kenney’s seat. He didn’t do it publicly, he just did it because it was right.
After his defeat, Charlie realized that winning statewide would take a coordinated effort, just like the Democrats do. He has spent the last few years helping to build that coordinated effort for victory in November. He realizes that legislative elections are just as important as the top of the ticket races. This is a paradigm shift for our party and a welcome one.
On the core issue of the proper management of government, Charlie is a proven leader. Before we can move the goal posts from a policy perspective, we need to stabilize and fix what is wrong. In Massachusetts government, that is a long list. Charlie, as a top lieutenant under governors Weld and Cellucci has done this before. He is at core a manager, and quite frankly our government is way past due for a manager at the helm.
Yes he doesn’t agree with me on a whole host of issues, too numerous to mention. And if we were talking about legislative races, I may not support him for the office. I fundamentally believe that to change public policy in Massachusetts our focus should be on the legislature. Not the corner office. There are countless executive actions that Baker can take in the management of current programs that will have a profound effect, and will allow us to fight, in the legislature for our core issues.
That brings us to Mark Fisher, I personally like Mark Fisher. He is a gentleman, much like Charlie. I agree with him on a whole host of issues more than I do with Charlie. I just don’t think he has enough experience to hit the ground running and fix state government on day one. I also wish he would have run for my State Senate seat against Mike Moore. I would have enthusiastically supported him in that endeavor, it is a winnable seat for which we have no candidate.
It is for these reasons that I am supporting Baker tomorrow.