So, as usual, people started asking me what I think about the candidates. Here are the races I have a strong opinion on:
- Somerville Alderman at-large: Fred Berman
I know him from Progressive Democrats of Somerville and was delighted when he said he was running. I've been on a number of campaigns with him, including Pat Jehlen, Carl Sciortino, and Denise Provost (all of whom have endorsed him). He's smart, he's really thought things through, and he'll be Rebekah's ally in opening up city government. Plus, I must admit I really want to see Jack Connolly dropped off the board of aldermen after the immigrant-baiting campaign he ran against Marty Martinez last year.
- Somerville Alderman, ward 6 (Davis Square): Rebekah Gewirtz
Running for her second term, after doing a very good job on her first. But because she won a pretty narrow upset victory (against the aforementioned Connolly) in 2005, a couple of people see a chance to beat her. Rebekah is a whirlwind of activity, she does not give up, and she gets a lot done. I know her from PDS and the Howard Dean campaign.
- Somerville Mayor: I'd vote for Susan Bremer if I were voting in Somerville. I met her at a PDS meeting several months ago, and I think the closed clique that runs Somerville could use another jolt to open it up. Joe Curtatone is the incumbent, and he's not awful, though I do get the impression that he's more about putting on a good show than actually doing things.
- Boston City Council district 9 (Allston-Brighton): Tim Schofield!!!
Just about the best combination of smart+articulate+personable+effective I've ever seen run for office in Massachusetts. I volunteered on his campaign for state rep in 2005, when he was brand new and totally unknown, and came in second in a field of 4 candidates, just 64 votes behind the winner (someone who was well known and had run for that same seat before). I'm going to be at Tim's office all day tomorrow, 6am - 9pm. Tim rocks. This time we'll get him elected!
- State Rep, East Boston: Gloribell Mota
I first heard about her from my friend Lindsay. I've since heard about her from a few other people whose opinion on Massachusetts politics I respect, and I'm convinced, but I'll just point you at what Lindsay wrote:
- "This woman is, to be blunt, un-fucking-believable. She's the kind of candidate who reminds me why I love politics: a genuine progressive, a proven community activist, smart, charming, and most of all, remarkably articulate. To add to it, she's a young, Latina, single mother of 2, and she speaks clearly and persuasively about progressive values in both English and Spanish. Simply put, she would be a refreshing addition to the Massachusetts House of Representatives, and I regret that I can't be more involved with her campaign.
You can read more about her at her website. It only gets better, trust me. Basically, my point in posting this is that this election is winnable. East Boston has experienced one of the largest cultural shifts in the State's history. Largely populated by Italian immigrants 25 years ago, over 40% of the district's residents are now Latino. The seat Mota is running for has been held by Italians for over 75 years (not kidding). There has been some terrible leadership and some great leadership, but regardless, it's about time that the State Rep from East Boston more accurately represented his/her district.
Click on the candidates' web sites to learn more about them.
Do you know anyone who lives in Somerville, east Boston, or Allston-Brighton? Pass it on.