The observations of a 50 something with lots of experience in politics, government, life and learning.

Thursday, January 19, 2006


I'm sure there's some "blogger rule" that you have to post on relevant events within so many minutes/hours/days. Well, as you all know, I am NOT about rules, and so I'm finally getting around to telling you all about the wonderful Berkshire Brigades dinner last Thursday. I also left town the next a.m. (which we may or may not cover in a subsequent post...) so you can forgive me if I actually RELAXED for a change!

Four hundred people in one place in Berkshire County constitutes a riot. Especially on a cold day! But it was a love fest of sorts at the ITAM Lodge as virtually every Democratic candidate with opposition appeared to woo our 2% of the statewide vote (although we can be mightier in a primary.) We were also graced by the presence of Middlesex County DA (and Lee/North Adams native AND Williams College '75) Martha Coakley, who, although she has no primary opposition (I think Phil Johnston actually TOLD people they weren't supposed to run against her!) had to good sense to check in with the hometeam, teh people who knew her "when."

Let's start with Secretary of State, because that was the "unlovefest" part of the evening. I was a Cam Kerry supporter, and am sorry that he is not running. That having been said, I personally do not think that John Bonifaz did himself any good that evening. Too over the top and confrontational given the event. What good he DID do was make Bill Galvin a better candidate. Not known for his exciting presentation, Galvin shot right back and got some adrenalin going. Voting rights and ballot access are important questions -- too important to be shrugged off. So at least now we're talking about it.

As everyone who reads this knows, I have had a hard time with the crop of LG candidates, that is, until Tim Murray officially joined the race. And I was not disappointed Thursday night. He did a great job and gave a good presentation. Second place goes to Andrea Silbert who, while she isn't my candidate for LG, would be a good cabinet choice. And the microphone problems actually HELPED Sam Kelly who dealt with it with grace, ease and aplomb. He's become a better speaker.

Then there were the gubernatorial candidates. The Brigades organizers, while not backing a horse in this race, are politically savvy. If Deval Patrick had spoken first, the room would have cleared and the rest of the candidates would have been speaking to their advance people. As it was, Tom Reilly did a good job (another example of opposition improving someone's candidacy) but when DP concluded the evening with ANOTHER FABULOUS PRESENTATION SAYING NEW THINGS I HAD NEVER HEARD BEFORE the spontaneous standing O was a sight to behold. As Wes Flinn has pointed out, the DP partisans were on the feet when he WENT to the podium. By the time Deval finished, only those recovering from hip replacement surgery had failed to rise to their feet! BELIEVE AGAIN. that's the message.

Well, back to Medicare D.....DONT GET ME STARTED!

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