Charlie Baker hits the road
He was going to lose – in the Republican primary.
He was going to lose – in the Republican primary.
Forget the usual BS about wanting to spend more time with his family. The real reason Charlie Baker is out of the 2022 fight is the fact that he wasn’t going to defeat Geoff Diehl, the ex-state rep from Whitman who was running against him for the nomination.
Nor was his lieutenant governor, Karyn “Pay to Play” Polito.
Polito and Charlie Parker – as Dementia Joe Biden calls him – are in fact retiring due to ill health.
The voters got sick of them.
In May, Dementia Joe told Parker, “You’re doing a hell of a job.”
Endorsed by Joe Biden! What more did you need to know about his future prospects in GOP circles?
The departure of Tall Deval – his other nickname — from the scene is a big win for Donald J. Trump. He came out early for Diehl, and now he claims another scalp of an anti-Trump poseur. Prime irony: the Washington Post has a story this morning about the 10 GOP politicians POTUS has been feuding with and how their fates will indicate how popular Trump remains with the base.
Before the ink was even dry on the story, Parker was out.
Here’s a question for everyone in the Boston media who served as Parker’s amen chorus:
For years now your “polls” have been telling us how he was the most popular governor in the US, bar none. These slobbering puff pieces continued even through the Panic, when the Commonwealth for several months simultaneously had both the nation’s highest unemployment rate as well as the third-highest death rate.
For all the cheerleaders and pom-pom wavers in what was once the Boston press, this decision by Charlie to throw in the towel must be quite a…. disappointment, to use the word Parker always used to describe his reactions to the policies of Donald J. Trump.
If you’re looking, in retrospect, for straws in the wind, here’s one. Up in Essex County there’s a House seat the GOP has held probably since the Civil War – it includes the horsey towns of Hamilton, Ipswich, Wenham, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Rowley and Topsfield.
Baker gave the longtime GOP rep a hack job, and yesterday there was a special election to replace him. The Republican candidate was a Baker coat holder, who said of the governor:
“He’s a great guy. He’s done a great job handling the pandemic… No one was truly prepared for what had happened….”
Least of all Charlie Parker.
When the results came in last night, the Republicans had lost the 4th Essex District for the first time since James Buchanan was president – in a landslide, 56-44. So much for the endorsement of the most popular governor in America, in a Republican district.
Here’s another straw in the wind. He had a big fundraiser scheduled in Springfield. The local paper gave it a big write-up, quoting one of the fat cats, a former Springfield city councilor, who was running the time.
The guy isn’t even a Massachusetts resident anymore. He’s moved to Connecticut.
Baker was way underwater in every recent poll of GOP primary voters. His dwindling band of supporters – mainly shut-ins, mitten knitters and those who still get home delivery of the Boston Globe – fantasized that he would somehow always just bring over enough independents to win a primary next September.
But most of the unenrolled who take GOP ballots in primaries detest Baker as much as the actual registered Republicans. Baker would have had to import or invent a whole new electorate to get through the primary – and that’s assuming he could have even gotten 15 percent at the GOP state convention to get onto the primary ballot.
Such a campaign would have been unprecedented, and would have cost millions – at least five million bucks was the estimate. And lately, he hasn’t been raising much beyond the $50,000-$60,000 he needed to meet his campaign apparatus’ monthly expenses.
What issues would the governor have run on? Would he have said… let me finish the job?
What job? Destroying the state’s economy?
Seriously, what were his accomplishments?
The Mass. State Police? The MBTA? The Registry of Motor Vehicles? The botched vaccination rollout? The Holyoke Soldiers Home?
How many thousands of elderly residents died, not just in Holyoke, but in all the nursing homes across the state, which are regulated by his Department of Public Health (DPH). Over half the dead in Massachusetts were in those nursing homes, until the corrupt DPH decided, Cuomo-like, to “adjust” the numbers.
These are the same nursing homes whose operators gave him $52,000 in contributions, not a penny of which he ever returned.
Baker’s hysterical overreaction to the Panic destroyed perhaps as much as 40 percent of the state’s restaurants. And then just last week he and Polito went out and did a photo op asking the state’s residents to be sure to patronize… whatever restaurants have managed to survive his reign of error.
It was like the old story about the guy who murdered his parents and then threw himself on the mercy of the court because he was an orphan.
Baker is the classic example of a politician who forgot who elected him. These last few years, it’s almost as if he was trying to i.d. his entire voter base and personally piss off each and every last one of them.
He was first elected in 2014 after basically chaining his candidacy to the referendum campaign to stop the automatic annual gasoline tax increases that had already been approved by the legislature.
That question prevailed by 110,000 votes, while Baker barely defeated the historically terrible candidate, Martha “Marsha” Coakley, by 40,000 votes. In other words, he rode in on the coattails of an anti-gasoline tax crusade.
And now he has spent the last year pushing even more onerous gasoline taxes – which he claimed he could impose with no input from either the electorate or the legislature. He finally threw in the towel on that odious Transportation-Climate Initiative (TCI) late last month.
But it was too late. He’d alienated another large chunk of his voter base. He shut down the entire state last year… for what? No churches, no gyms, no school sports, no nothing. When the mobs went on a looting-arson spree in downtown Boston in the spring of 2020, including shooting at Boston cops on Tremont Street, he shrugged off the riots as “mostly peaceful” protesting.
He was woke. And you know what they say. Get woke, go broke. It’s happened again.
Now, in his statement with his lieutenant governor Pay to Play, Parker said, “We want to focus on recovery, not on the grudge matches political campaigns can devolve into.”
Grudge matches? Parker’s problem was, he was going to lose this next grudge match. And it wasn’t even going to be close.
He’s got 13 months left in the Corner Office. Charlie, do us all a favor and just don’t do anything.
Haven’t you done enough already?