Harvard Pilgrim CEO Charles Baker To Run For Mass. Gov.

Charles D. Baker
Charles D. Baker

With more than a year to go before voters go to the polls, the gubernatorial race is heating up. Charlie Baker is resigning from Harvard Pilgrim Health Care so he can run for governor.

Baker has been making the rounds at Republican Party events across the state this spring, fueling speculation that he would join the race for the state’s top political office. Baker has expressed some reluctance about leaving Harvard Pilgrim, a company he helped pull out of bankruptcy.

Close associates have said that leaving his nearly $1 million salary and a job that gives him a reasonable amount of time with his wife and children will also be difficult.

In a statement released Wednesday morning, Baker said, “Leaving the company is not an easy decision for me, but there is no middle ground. I am either the CEO of Harvard Pilgrim, or I’m building a campaign organization. I cannot do both.”

Baker would face a primary against convenience-store magnate and former independent candidate for governor Christy Mihos, who has also been more active as of late in Republican party politics with time and financial support.

In a general election, Baker would Democratic incumbent Deval Patrick and, quite possibly, state Treasurer Timothy Cahill, who announced Monday he is changing his party affiliation from "democrat" to "un-enrolled."

This program aired on July 8, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.

Headshot of Martha Bebinger

Martha Bebinger Reporter
Martha Bebinger covers health care and other general assignments for WBUR.



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