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Massachusetts Liberal

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

Friday, April 12, 2013

Peace is at hand

It looks as if Deval Patrick has swerved to avoid that high-speed crash with the Legislature.

The day began with Senate President Therese Murray rapped Patrick for his rhetoric over the transportation funding bill passed by the House:
“You have to be careful when you speak, and the rhetoric and the words that you use, if you want to move things ahead,” she told reporters after speaking to the ­Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce.
It probably didn't hurt that Patrick took a lashing from the Globe's Scot Lehigh a day earlier.

Within hours a newly conciliatory Patrick offered well-tempered words for the Senate plan, which calls for $300 million more in transportation spending -- if not revenues-- by shifting dollars around.
“You see that the Senate has moved to a different place than was announced back then,” said Patrick. “It was about kicking the can down the road. But I think there are a lot of people in the Legislature – and, I think, including the Senate president — who don’t want to kick the can down the road, and I think that’s one of the reasons we’ve seen the movement on the ­Senate side.”
Not that Murray was holding an iron grip either. Her original plans to have the chamber take up the bill Wednesday or Thursday have given way to an extremely rare Saturday session. There were clearly some members who needed to be brought into line -- and a weekend session before a school vacation week recess sends a loud message.

Now it will be up to reconcile any Senate bill that emerges with the House package -- and where Speaker Robert DeLeo appears dug in for his $500 million revenue plan.

 No one can be kept after school for that compromise, so some more conciliatory words are going to have to flow.

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