Marty Walsh, the $6 million man
Lee Majors, move over — there’s a new $6 million man in town, and his name is Marty Walsh.
The current headlines are that Hizzoner will be the next secretary of Labor. But I think the more significant news is that Marty has crossed a breathtaking personal threshold in his latest campaign-finance report.
As of Jan. 5, Walsh reported to the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance that he now has $6,189,899.72 “Cash On Hand.”
He’s not going to run for office again any time soon, probably never. Considering the basket case that Boston has become, this new job of his isn’t a promotion, it’s an evacuation, like the helicopters taking people off the roof of the American embassy in Saigon in April 1975.
So what’s going to happen to that $6.2 million now? Repeated calls to the mayor’s office were not returned yesterday, so I think we all know the answer.
When a politician formally ends his career, he’s not permitted to directly pocket the campaign cash. He’s supposed to turn over the unspent funds to the state, or return it to donors, or something.
But wherever the money supposed to go is a moot point, because the statesman always says he’s “keeping my options open” for some future run, or some such blather, because that way, he can just keep spending the account down to nothing.
Keeping their options open? Options like, where am I going for dinner tonight, The Capital Grille or Smith & Wollensky?
Next weekend’s option – flying into Miami International or Palm Beach?
Uber or Lyft?
And don’t forget the Christmas gift certificates for supporters — who supports you more than your own family members?
Car leases, cell phones, dry cleaning, pool maintenance — everything can be defined as a political expenditure. Some retired pols even hire their kids as “political consultants.” Got to get a child into an exclusive private school — send ‘em a donation from the account!
The good news for Marty is, he has neither a wife nor kids, so the $6 million will last him even longer than it does most of his fellow payroll patriots.
Marty will have to go through the usual confirmation process by the U.S. Senate. But let’s face it, unless you’re a pinky-ring thug like Marty himself – a “business agent” — who cares who the secretary of labor is?
I suppose the senators could grill Hizzoner about the scandals that have swirled about him at City Hall – the dodgy union funds funneled in from out of state, the alleged shakedowns, the Teamsters with gangster grandfathers with monikers like “Suitcase” allegedly running amok in the suburbs.
But again: who cares?
On the other hand, wouldn’t you like to see some GOP solon hold up a print-out of the latest OCPF report and exclaim with shock: “Mayor … six million bucks? Six-point-two-million bucks! And you’re telling us everything is on the level?”
Follow-up question: “Mayor, do you know Hunter Biden? Did he ever talk to you about how much ‘the Big Guy’ expects?”
The most amazing thing about Marty’s millions is that even as the city’s economy has cratered over the last year, he has continued vacuuming up cash the way a Hoover WindTunnel sucks up dust mites — relentlessly.
And not just from the usual suspects — hacks on the city payroll, union thugs, lobbyists, etc.
As countless Boston businesses go into bankruptcy or at least “hibernation,” they continue to … do the right thing. And by businesses, I mean anybody who has to get a permit or license of any kind from the city to operate.
Everyone employed by these private enterprises — from owner to mechanic, whether they live in the city or in a 495 exurb, Democrat or Republican, whether or not they give to other politicians, they all seem to pony up for Marty, often maxing out with a grand.
It used to be, until 10 months ago, Marty could rely on every bartender and waiter in every licensed victualer in the city to come through with at least $500 per annum. Now, of course, we have no more bartenders or waitresses, because the hospitality industry is defunct.
But still Marty’s fundraising continued — $195,000 last month alone, $219,000 in November.
An important point about “labor,” especially organized labor. “Labor” has no connection whatsoever with … work. Despite what the dictionary tells you, labor and work are not synonyms. In fact, they’re more like antonyms — opposites.
And I say that as a 30-plus year member of assorted “labor” unions.
Marty understands this distinction better than most. He reads all the indictments — most recently of the UAW gangsters. They spent tens of thousands on, among other things, cigars.
But none of those modern-day Walter Reuthers had $6.2 million “Cash on Hand.”
Secretary of Labor — the job needed the man, and the man needed the job. The six-million-dollar man.