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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Deval 2.0

You have to give Deval Patrick major brownie points for chutzpah on this one: stripping funds for the Barnstable County sheriff because he made a political hire virtually identical to one of his biggest first term gaffes.

Toss in a few more because he did it as embarks on a tour to promote his book "A Reason to Believe," a tour the Tea Party Newsletter is trying its best to undermine by reliving Patrick's worst moments on the job.

And there is certainly no question that the attempted hiring of Marian Walsh to a $175,000 a year job that had been vacant for more than a dozen years is a mirror image of effort by Barnstable County County Sheriff James Cummings to hire former state representative and defeated congressional candidate Jeff Perry to a $110,00 special assistant position.

But Patrick 2.0, unencumbered by the need to win re-election, isn't running from the controversy this time. According to the Statehouse News Service, Patrick said of the $325 million supplemental budget placed before him by the Legislature:
“I’m going to sign all of it except the appropriation for the Barnstable sheriff,’’ Patrick told reporters as he headed into a meeting with House and Senate leaders. “By all accounts, including his, he has the resources he needs for his operations. We don’t have extra money to spread around.’’
Would have loved to have been a fly on the wall in that meeting.

In a sense we are seeing the same Patrick the Herald is dredging up. He's never shied from ruffling feathers, even among alleged supporters like legislative leaders from the same party. But you do have to give him some props for making a move with such open political overtones, knowing full well it would re-open an ugly chapter of his recent past.

On the eve of departing the state for much of the rest of the month to promote his book.

Then again, it's going to be hard for state GOP leaders, who have been silent on the Perry hiring -- unlike the Walsh caper -- to protest Patrick's move to save the taxpayers $104,000.

Say what you will, but it's very easy to see Deval Patrick is feeling very comfortable in his own skin these days.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

If only we could elect true Independents who could govern with the same backbone all the time.

April 12, 2011 8:44 AM  

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