Connect with us


When it comes to identity politics, there are multiple identities. Look at Marty Walsh. – The Boston Globe



Marty Walsh will face at least two formidable women when he runs for a third term. And, yes, he is running.

Mayor Marty WalshJonathan Wiggs/Globe Staff

City Councilor Andrea Campbell formally announced her candidacy for mayor Thursday, joining fellow councilor Michelle Wu in what history suggests is an uphill battle to replace a popular incumbent.

By the way, Marty Walsh intends to run for a third term.

He wouldn’t confirm that when I spoke to him Thursday, but I’ve talked to people close to him, and they say he’s in.

Those confidantes say Walsh will wait until after the presidential election to announce. The timing has nothing to do with the speculation that if Walsh’s longtime friend Joe Biden wins the White House, Biden would offer Walsh some position in his administration.


Given his and his family’s long association with organized labor, Walsh would make a fine labor secretary. Given that his parents grew up in Ireland and his enduring affinity for the land of his forebears, he’d be a natural as ambassador there.

But that presumes a Biden victory, and all the speculation ignores the reality that Walsh is the main caregiver for his elderly mother, Mary, who still lives in the Dorchester three-decker where he grew up. The idea of leaving his mom behind or uprooting her — not to mention his partner, Lorrie Higgins — for some new job in Washington doesn’t make a lot of practical sense.

At this point, he will face at least a couple of formidable women. Given that they are women of color, this could be the city’s deepest dive to date into what the political wise guys call identity politics.

But then, all politics are identity politics. Candidates’ identities — the ones they want to project, the ones voters perceive — are at the heart of electoral politics and always have been.

Identity politics has become something of a perjorative, because if taken to extremes, it can reduce candidates to one- or two-dimensional figures.


So if you accept one definition of identity politics, voters should be expected to vote for or against Michelle Wu because she is an Asian-American woman, or Campbell because she is a Black woman, or Walsh because he’s a white male.

But if you take the literal definition of identity politics — a tendency for people of a particular religion, race, or social background to form political alliances, moving away from traditional broad-based party politics — that doesn’t sound like an effective way to win an election in a city like Boston.

If Bostonians were given to the standard definition of identity politics, it would be hard, given the shift in demographics here, to explain how Marty Walsh was elected once, much less twice.

Walsh will be tough to beat, not just because of the power of incumbency, which is arguably greater in the midst of a pandemic that most voters say Walsh has handled well, and not just because of his substantial war chest, now at more than $5 million.

No, Walsh will be hard to beat because he has a compelling narrative of his own, which illustrates that the most successful politicians have multiple identities, that they appeal to all sorts of different people on different levels.

He is the son of immigrants who arrived in this country with nothing. He beat cancer when he was 7. He went into alcoholism recovery when he was 28. He went to BC at nights to get his degree. He grew up working-class in relatively conservative St. Margaret’s parish and ended up as a progressive who supports same-sex marriage and opposes the death penalty. As a union leader, he brought hundreds of people of color into the trades.


That’s a lot of identities.

Three years ago, running against a very popular Black former city councilor in Tito Jackson, Walsh won by more than 30 percentage points, winning 20 of the city’s 22 wards, meaning he got a lot of votes from all kinds of people.

Has Boston really changed that much since 2017?

If they’re to have any realistic chance of knocking off Marty Walsh, Michelle Wu and Andrea Campbell better hope so.

Kevin Cullen is a Globe columnist. He can be reached at

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link


5 golden rules if you end up talking politics with your family this Thanksgiving and how 4 college students spent an unprecedented fall semester – MarketWatch



Here are Tuesday’s top personal finance stories:

Personal Finance
Janet Yellen is poised to become Treasury secretary in a Biden cabinet — and here’s what that means for cash-strapped American families

‘We are in for very, very rough economic times,’ one analyst tells MarketWatch.

Older people, Black and Latinx Americans say they would be hesitant about getting a coronavirus vaccine

Many Americans say they’re hesitant to get a vaccine, even if one was approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

5 golden rules if you end up talking politics with your family this Thanksgiving

‘Thanksgiving dinner doesn’t need two headless chickens fighting over the soul of the nation’

Pope Francis takes aim at anti-mask protestors: ‘They are incapable of moving outside of their own little world’

In his new book, the pontiff asks, ‘What matters more — to take care of people or keep the financial system going?’

Artists want to turn the Sunday after Thanksgiving into Black Friday for art

Thousands of artists and organizations across the country are coming together to encourage people to shop art Nov. 29

Lucky, stressed, and ready to graduate — How 4 college students spent an unprecedented fall semester

One is taking time off, another is racing to graduate, and one took classes while living in a state park on an island.

Dr. Fauci on Cuomo’s decision to review vaccines for New Yorkers after FDA approval: ‘Trust the process’

The veteran immunologist in a Washington Post video interview: ‘The numbers can be stark, sobering and, in many cases, they can be frightening.’

From jobs to child care: How this second surge in COVID-19 can damage your finances — as well as your health

More people were having trouble getting enough food on the table in early November compared to five weeks earlier.

Under Biden, CFPB will play a role in any student-debt cancelation — and help tackle student-loan servicers

Experts expect more aggressive oversight of the student-loan industry come January.

Elsewhere on MarketWatch
Officials plan to distribute 6.4 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in December, aiming for 40 million doses by end of year

The U.S. government plans to initially roll out 6.4 million doses of a Covid-19 vaccine next month, while it is confident in meeting its goal of distributing about 40 million doses by the end of the year, federal officials said Tuesday.

There will be a ‘huge boom’ in the second quarter of 2021 if vaccines are effective, says investment strategist David Rosenberg

Market strategist’s near-term ‘value trade’ taps utilities, consumer staples, health care, Big Tech — plus long-term Treasurys and gold.

Beware of ‘zombie’ companies running rampant in the stock market

A total of 19%, or 571 companies, in the Russell 3000 Index are considered unviable, writes William Barritt.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Continue Reading


First on CNN: Key government agency acknowledges Biden's win and begins formal transition – CNN



The letter is the first step the administration has taken to acknowledge President Donald Trump’s defeat, more than two weeks after Biden was declared the winner in the election.
Murphy said she had not been pressured by the White House to delay the formal transition and did not make a decision “out of fear or favoritism.”
“Please know that I came to my decision independently, based on the law and available facts,” Murphy wrote. “I was never directly or indirectly pressured by any Executive Branch official — including those who work at the White House or GSA — with regard to the substance or timing of my decision. To be clear, I did not receive any direction to delay my determination.”
The letter marks Murphy’s formal sign off on Biden’s victory, a normally perfunctory process known as ascertainment. The move will allow the transition to officially begin, permitting current administration agency officials to coordinate with the incoming Biden team, and providing millions in government funding for the transition.
The Biden team has not waited for the formal transition process to begin preparing for the presidency, as Biden announced several Cabinet picks on Monday. But the delay in ascertainment meant that Biden’s team was locked out from government data and could not make contact with federal agencies, nor could it spend $6.3 million in government funding now available for the transition. A Biden official said the most urgent need was for the transition to be given access to Covid-19 data and the vaccine distribution plans.
The Biden team will now have access to additional office space inside the agencies and the ability to use federal resources for background checks on Biden’s White House staff appointments and Cabinet picks.
Yohannes Abraham, executive director of Biden’s transition, said the start of the transition was a “needed step to begin tackling the challenges facing our nation, including getting the pandemic under control and our economy back on track.”
“This final decision is a definitive administrative action to formally begin the transition process with federal agencies,” Abraham said. “In the days ahead, transition officials will begin meeting with federal officials to discuss the pandemic response, have a full accounting of our national security interests and gain complete understanding of the Trump administration’s efforts to hollow out government agencies.”
The ascertainment letter was sent Monday after Michigan formally certified its election results earlier in the day and more Trump lawsuits were dismissed. Georgia certified its razor-thin presidential results on Friday, and Pennsylvania is nearing certification of its election results, too.
It’s the latest sign that Trump’s conspiracy-laden legal bid, led by Rudy Giuliani, to circumvent the outcome of the election is nearing an end. The Trump campaign’s lawsuits to delay certification of the election have been dismissed in multiple states, as his legal team has failed to provide any evidence of widespread voter fraud.
But until now, Murphy had refused to move forward with the ascertainment process, despite Biden’s clear victory. Murphy, a Trump political appointee, has faced intense scrutiny and political pressure from Democrats and, in recent days, Republicans calling for the start of a smooth transition. In a statement Monday, Sen. Rob Portman, an Ohio Republican, said that “there is no evidence as of now of any widespread fraud or irregularities that would change the result in any state” and called on the transition process to begin.
In the letter, Murphy suggested that the ascertainment rules were vague and should be updated.
“GSA does not dictate the outcome of legal disputes and recounts, nor does it determine whether such proceedings are reasonable or justified,” she wrote. “These are issues that the Constitution, federal laws, and state laws leave to the election certification process and decisions by courts of competent jurisdiction. I do not think that an agency charged with improving federal procurement and property management should place itself above the constitutionally-based election process. I strongly urge Congress to consider amendments to the Act.”
Trump tweeted moments after the letter was reported, thanking Murphy for her work and affirming the decision to start the transition.
“I want to thank Emily Murphy at GSA for her steadfast dedication and loyalty to our Country. She has been harassed, threatened, and abused — and I do not want to see this happen to her, her family, or employees of GSA. Our case STRONGLY continues, we will keep up the good fight, and I believe we will prevail!” Trump tweeted. “Nevertheless, in the best interest of our Country, I am recommending that Emily and her team do what needs to be done with regard to initial protocols, and have told my team to do the same.”
Two Trump advisers said the President’s tweets are being read by people in his orbit as essentially a concession.
“A veiled attempt to justify continued fundraising solicitations,” the second adviser said.
The General Services Administration informed federal departments on Monday night that it has ascertained Biden to be the winner of the presidential election, according to an email obtained by CNN.
“In accordance with the Presidential Transition Act of 1963, as amended, today, November 23, 2020, the GSA Administrator has ascertained Joseph R. Biden and Senator Kamala Harris the apparent successful candidates for the offices of President and Vice President, respectively,” Mary Gibert, the federal transition coordinator, wrote in an email to federal department contacts.
A senior White House official said some staffers were initially caught off guard by the GSA letter, learning about it first from CNN. But the official said staffers will begin to cooperate with the Biden transition team, adding that they were seeking more information on next steps.
For two weeks after the election was called for Biden, Murphy was silent as the ascertainment delay dragged on, sparking public pressure from congressional Democrats and Biden himself, who warned that the delay could cost lives due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Democrats were demanding a briefing from Murphy on Tuesday to explain her decision-making, rejecting the GSA’s proposal earlier Monday for her deputy to brief Congress next week. Democratic committee chairmen sent a slew of new letters to Murphy on Tuesday demanding she allow the transition to begin and warning of the consequences for failing to do so.
This story has been updated with additional reporting on Monday.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story misspelled Mary Gibert’s name.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Continue Reading


How Trump's fundraising could benefit his post-White House political life – CNN



All these missives from President Donald Trump’s political operation landed in supporters’ inboxes Monday morning claiming to solicit funds to help Trump fund recounts and legal challenges to overturn the election results.
But the legal fine print on each shows that a new Trump fundraising arm, Save America, actually will get the first cut of any money that comes in. And because spending rules for leadership PACs are so loose, campaign-finance experts warn that Save America could easily become a political slush fund for Trump and those close to him.
Here’s a closer look at the President’s recent fundraising efforts and his new fundraising vehicle Save America:

What’s Save America?

Save America is a leadership PAC that Trump launched less than a week after the election.
In an email to CNN earlier this month, Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh said Trump “always planned” to create a leadership PAC “win or lose, so he can support candidates and issues he cares about, such as combating voter fraud.”
Team Trump has been on a fundraising spree in recent weeks, sending more than 330 fundraising emails and 92 text messages to supporters since 11 p.m. ET on Election Night.
The current solicitations direct the first 75% of each contribution up to $5,000 to Save America. Only after that threshold is met does money go into the campaign’s recount account.
Additionally, 25% of the funds go to the Republican National Committee’s operating account.

What’s a leadership PAC?

Leadership PACs are political action committees generally established by current and former politicians to raise money and to curry influence with others.
Political figures use these PACs donate to other candidates, helping maintain their profiles and build leverage within their own party. But they also have become vehicles for a campaigns-in-waiting, funding polling, staff and travel. Save America could become an avenue for Trump to continue funding political operations as he weighs a future presidential bid in 2024.

Are there fundraising limits on leadership PACs?

Yes, but fundraising limits are higher for leadership PACs than candidate committees.
An individual donor can contribute up to $5,000 a year to a leadership PAC — allowing a politician to collect up to $20,000 over a four-year period from a single contributor. By contrast, that same donor could only give a maximum of $2,800 at this point for a 2024 presidential campaign.

Does Trump have to spend the money in the leadership PAC on election challenges?

No. The rules on spending by leadership PACs also are far more relaxed than those for campaign committees and do not restrict politicians from using donors’ funds for personal expenses — a use forbidden in a presidential campaign account.
It’s one reason campaign-finance experts say donors should be leery of what they view as a Trump campaign bait-and-switch tactic: soliciting funds for legal challenges and instead first routing the money to his leadership PAC.
“The typical donor doesn’t read the legal fine print,” Paul Ryan, vice president of vice president of policy and litigation at Common Cause, told CNN.
Ryan said few restrictions apply on the PAC’s spending. Should they choose to do so, Trump and his family members could draw salaries from Save America funds or direct its donors’ money to his businesses by hosting PAC events at a Trump-owned properties.
“This money could easily — and legally — end up in his own pocket in the coming years,” Ryan said. And even after the long-shot legal challenges to the 2020 election end, Trump “could tease a 2024 run for years and continue milking his supporters for contributions to this slush fund,” he added.
Under federal election rules, Save America will have to file its first public report detailing fundraising and spending Dec. 3, but it will only cover the first fews weeks of its operations.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Continue Reading