WBUR

Obama Stumps For Patrick

BOSTON — President Obama renewed criticism of Republicans and urged voters to keep the nation moving forward at a rally for Gov. Deval Patrick’s re-election campaign on Saturday.

Thousands crowded into the Hynes Convention Center in Boston to cheer the governor and get a glimpse of the president. In speeches, both politicians worked to channel voter anger at the economy into a win for the incumbent governor.

President Obama headlined a Boston rally for his longtime friend and political ally Gov. Deval Patrick, right, on Saturday. (AP)

Mr. Obama’s appearance was a personal favor for a political ally and friend.

“The reason I came today isn’t just because Deval has been there for me as a friend,” Mr. Obama said. “It’s because he continues to inspire me as a leader.”

Mr. Obama has been stumping for candidates across the nation ahead of the midterm elections. The last time the president tried to rally support for a Democrat in Massachusetts was alongside Attorney General Martha Coakley in her bid for the U.S. Senate seat in January.

Throughout his speech, Mr. Obama noted achievements in the state in education and job growth. But he also criticized national Republicans, saying they have promised to return to their agenda that was in place before he took office.

“It’s an agenda that turned a record surplus into a record deficit,” he said. “An agenda that let Wall Street run wild at the expense of folks on Main Street. An agenda that nearly destroyed our economy.”

Without naming Patrick’s opponents, the president ticked off a list of things they would eliminate, like unemployment benefits for thousands of people and investments in education and clean energy.

“It is the same theory the other side has been peddling for years and it is up to us to tell them we don’t want what they are selling,” Mr. Obama told the crowd. “We’ve been there, we’ve tried it, we don’t like it and we’re not going back.”

Both Mr. Obama and Patrick acknowledged voter frustration and anger, but kept returning to themes that the Republican policies would undo much of the progress that the state and the nation have made coming out of the recession.

“Four years ago, we worked hard to change the guard,” Patrick said. “Now we need to work to guard the change.”

Patrick touted the successes of his administration, saying when the going got tough, they made choices to invest in education, health care and job creation.

“And that is why today, we lead the nation in student achievement and health care coverage for our residents,” Patrick said. “That is why today we are creating jobs faster than every other state in America — 65,000 jobs this year alone.”

And in trying to win a second term, the governor says there’s still work to be done.

“I won’t be satisfied,” Patrick said, working into the fever-pitch of a Sunday preacher. “I won’t be satisfied until we bear our generational responsibility. Our responsibility to leave this place better than we found it. To lift one another up instead of tearing everybody down. And let me tell you, you shouldn’t be satisfied either. That’s the choice. That’s the choice we have in this election.”

The most recent Suffolk University poll shows Patrick leading Republican rival Charles Baker by seven points. The poll has independent candidate and state Treasurer Tim Cahill with a modest 10 percent of votes and Green-Rainbow Party candidate Jill Stein in fourth.

The Baker campaign dismissed the power of the president stumping for the governor.

“Obama’s visit is symbolic of the momentum of the Baker campaign,” said a spokesman for Baker.

The essential challenge for both the incumbent president and governor is to turn anti-incumbent feeling into faith in strong leadership, in time for elections next month.

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  • ray

    This should pretty much seal the election for Baker.

  • Bev R

    To all you Independents & Democrats out there consider the following before you cast your votes!
    ……………………………………….

    The Epitome of Dirty Politics

    Allow me for one moment, if you will, to hypothetically adopt the Medieval system of justice with trials biased in favor of the prosecution. I refer to, of course, the Tim Cahill caper. Charles D. Baker and his alleged cohorts–namely–Losccoco, (a former Republican) Weaver, (Republican strategist) & Yob are, in my court of public opinion, guilty as charged. Is it conceivable that these underhanded, despicable allegations just may apply? Yes, and with Mr. Baker at the top of the heap and coming in on the second tier is Paul “Judas Iscariot”) Losccoco, who defected to his former nemesis Baker.

    Timothy Cahill did not deserve this betrayal. Mr. Baker, in my humble opinion, I believe you have violated the integrity of the office in your attempt to step over the threshold of that coveted corner office. “An ethic of service is at war with a craving for gain” (Easterbrook).

    Now for all the citizens of MA who will soon be casting votes on November 2, please read the following info about Charles D. Baker and then decide for yourself if Mr. Baker is morally or even capable enough to run this state:
    Republican gubernatorial challenger Charlie Baker declares that he will reduce the budget by $1 billion dollars through welfare reform and by restructuring public employment pension and retirement benefits. I think that we should start referring to Charlie as “Houdini the Great!” Guess what all you middle class folks out there? You can be sure that all his promises will fall squarely on our backs and please don’t be naive enough to think otherwise.

    Charles D. Baker while at Harvard Pilgrim (non-profit–now that’s an oxymoron for starters) cut his workforce by 90 people, increased premiums and outsourced its information technology and bailed out of R.I. leaving many thousands of citizens scurrying for health care coverage Mr. Baker refers to himself as a “social liberal” because he recognizes gay marriages (well, of course he does his running mate Richard Tisei just happens to be gay and in defense of Baker, that’s a positive) and abortion rights.

    Charles “Houdini” Baker was also involved in a questionable “conflict of interest” controversy when he became a trustee at Beth Israel/Deaconess Medical Center while CEO of at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care/Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates.

    Let us not forget the “Big Dig” fiasco, which he dismisses as ‘old news;’ The arrogance of Baker is shameless, as he was the chief financial architect of that project’s obscene overspending and essentially preventing other infrastructure projects to go forward. Now Charlie Baker wants to be governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts? These are just a few of the issues about which Baker should be more forthright.

    Now, Mr. Baker, what was your reason for voting against wind turbines on Martha’s Vineyard? Let me guess? Could it have had anything to do with the affluent and the powerful summer havens for the richest among us, along with those fossil fuel lobbyists? After all Charlie, alternative wind source has already been established that it is a “harbinger of a carbon free, energy-independent future for the U.S.”

    For example, Mass Maritime Academy has already produced nearly 1 million kilowatt hours of green power since ’07. Please tell us why you want to keep us all in the dark, as well as ensuring our dependence on foreign oil? Charlie, you do not have a clear vision for tomorrow.

    Now, Charlie, on the education debate, Deval Patrick has made it crystal clear that the “state can abandon the national standards, which are currently under development, if they end up being weaker than the state’s standards. “The MCAS is not going anywhere,’’ Now what is your plan again? In order to perform your “Houdini” acts” to reduce the budget by $1 billion dollars, you will cut out important social programs for the needy and the elderly and many of your education reform promises will be guillotined. The bottom line: “Draconian” budget cuts will soon be put in place.

    One more issue, Mr. Baker, that causes great distress among many voters is your anger management or lack thereof; it is a ‘red flag’ that your emotional I.Q. may be hovering in the double digits. In these troubled times, cool heads must prevail, and I think Governor Deval has mastered that art form. Remember your fellow Republican “Tea Party” Senator John McCain? He, too, never learned to control that “chip on his shoulder.”

    In conclusion, MA voters, Charles “Houdini” Baker will never be able to deliver on his promises to the poor and the middle classes; he is just another defender of Wall Street and the very rich.

    One more question Mr. Baker? Kindly, tell us who’s to blame for your poor track record in reforming welfare fraud? To all voters, please ponder all of these questions and do your research before casting your vote for Charlie “Houdini” Baker on November 2, 2010. Your life just may depend on it, literally!

    Bev of Boston, MA

  • Willy Roentgen

    The Obama Mantra:

    1. Our problems are inherited from the previous administration,

    2. The Republican minority is blocking our vision,

    3. Two years is not enough time to start to fix the problems,

    4. We don’t have to listen to those right wing extremists and Tea Party people,

    5. Vote for us again.

    I don’t think so.

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