Happening Today

Columbus Day

Today is Columbus Day, a federal holiday.

Pulaski Day

Today is also Pulaski Day, at least in Northampton, where Senate President Stanley Rosenberg attends a memorial mass and marches in the Pulaski Day Parade honoring Casimir Pulaski, a Polish military leader who fought in the American Revolution, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, 99 King St., Northampton, 10 a.m.

Tufts 10K

The 40th Annual Tufts Health Plan 10K for Women road race will take place today, starting and finishing on Boston Common, Boston /Cambridge, 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

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Cranberry bog tour

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren tours the cranberry bogs at Mann Farm, 602 Head of the Bay Road, Buzzards Bay, 3 p.m.

‘America’s Agenda’

U.S. Sen. Warren delivers her “Presentation on America’s Agenda” at Massachusetts Maritime Academy, 101 Academy Drive, Buzzards Bay, 5:30 p.m.

Vacationing in Ireland

Gov. Charlie Baker is vacationing in Ireland and will return to Massachusetts on Thursday.

Today’s Stories

‘Tawdry … bitter … nasty … ugly … vile … sordid’

Did something happen over the weekend that we missed? Everyone keeps talking about this “2005 video.” … What a weekend, starting Friday with the Washington Post’s original story on Donald Trump’s 2005 groping video and climaxing last night with what is already being described as the ‘Spectacle in St. Louis,’ which itself is being variously described (based on a non-scientific MSM sampling this morning) as bitter … nasty … tawdry … one for the record books. … ugly … vile … sordid … the Spectacle in St. Louis.’

Jessica Taylor at WGBH has a good “highlights” piece on last night’s drama that lived up to, or down to, an entire nation’s eager expectations.

The Salem News hosted a panel of area residents who commented live while the drama unfolded. And from the Globe’s Jeff Jacoby: “Who won the ‘debate’? The question is pointless.” Actually, Trump did lose the debate last night from the second he walked on stage, because he lost the whole weekend and likely the election starting on Friday. … Oh, the NYT has a roundup of pundits’ reactions. Boring. Can’t wait for this Saturday’s SNL with Alec Baldwin’s spot-on imitation of Donald.

Ayotte retreats, but not the Mass GOP, damn it

The only question we have about New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte’s abandonment of Donald Trump over the weekend is whether to categorize it as a “strategic retreat” or a “tactical retreat.” It’s a close call. But it’s the former, since any ambiguity likely would have doomed her re-election chances against Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan, who was trying her best over the weekend to turn the retreat into a full-scale rout by calling Ayotte’s move a “transparent, craven attempt at political self-preservation,” as reported by the Globe’s Laura Crimaldi and James Pindell.

But the Massachusetts Republican party is standing by their man, damn it, as Politico’s Lauren Dezenski reports. … Charlie Baker? Where’s Charlie Baker? Oh, that’s right. He’s vacationing in Ireland.

Schilling learns during debate: Poopholes are not loopholes

Not surprisingly, would-be senate candidate Curt Schilling was tweeting heavily in real time along with the presidential debate Sunday night and in his haste to keep up with the dumpster-fire-in-progress, created a social media moment of his own with a typo: “There is NO GUNSHOW POOPHOLE you idiot,” as tweeted after a Hillary Clinton answer. Twitter pounced on the gaffe, with a Gunshow Poophole handle appearing quickly. Schilling later explained the typo by pointing to the layout of the standard keyboard and saying it was “100 percent worth the typo. Some awesome stuff.” Later, Schilling posted a long screed on his blog, saying that after being livid and considering dropping his support of Trump in the wake of the videotape’s release, he was now back on board.

Schilling blog

Rarity: Warren’s Trump criticism lost in the shuffle

Normally, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s biting criticisms of Donald Trump attract national attention. Not this time. Her tweets about Donald’s 2005 groping remarks, as reported by the Globe’s Andy Rosen, barely registered on the political Richter scale over the weekend, since it seemed everyone and their brother were blasting away at Trump, the Mass GOP and Curt Schilling notwithstanding.

Boston Globe

At any other time …

OK, we get it. Howie Carr and other conservatives are upset that Trump’s 2005 groping remarks are getting far more attention from the media than Hillary Clinton’s recently disclosed comments about her favoring “open borders” and other highly embarrassing truths and untruths she privately confided to Wall Street bigwigs. But as conservative pundit Charles Krauthammer said at Fox News over the weekend (and we can’t find the video, so we’re paraphrasing): At any other time, Clinton’s remarks would have been devastating to her campaign, revealing her as a liar and hypocrite etc. But this wasn’t any other weekend.

‘Let’s hate: Boston’

The Simpsons had a grand old time poking fun of everything Boston last night, in an episode simply called ‘The Town.’ The Globe’s Matthew Gilbert provides his favorite moments from the show in which the entire family visits the city on a “hate-citation.” From Universal Hub’s Adam Gaffin: “The writers know their Boston. One scene featured a Cumbie’s, Lechmere and an old ‘BCN billboard. Even one local pol got a shoutout, indirectly, when Marge marveled over one of City Councilor Matt O’Malley’s free sunscreen dispensers: “So progressive!” Sure enough, Dan Perkins at the A.V. Club reveals that Boston insiders were indeed the brains behind the script, adding the show is “dense with nearly every Massachusetts stereotype and reference that you can imagine.” Fox has the full episode here. And, yes, there’s already a Wikipedia entry for the show.

Um, those stats about health-care spending dramatically slowing in Massachusetts? Never mind

It seems the state’s effort at holding the line on health care spending isn’t going as well as planned, reports the BBJ’s Jessica Bartlett. Harvard-Pilgrim Health Care apparently made a reporting boo-boo, causing the state to underestimate the rate of spending growth from 2014 to 2015. The net result: Actual health-care spending was considerably higher than thought. “It’s more troubling, no question about it,” said Stuart Altman, chair of the Health Policy Commission, a watchdog agency that tracks health care costs. “It’s not at the level we were seeing five years ago or longer, but we’re beginning to see this uptick, and it’s happening all over the country.”

BBJ

Rather than raise a stink, Dems help spin Baker’s DCR shakeup

The Herald’s Matt Stout has a nice catch: Why did three Democrats – Senate President Stan Rosenberg, Melrose Mayor Robert Dolan and former state senator and current Environmental League of Massachusetts head George Bachrach – lend their names to a very lengthy Baker administration press release announcing a pair of promotions at the embattled Department of Conservation and Recreation? “This type of spin cycle isn’t necessarily common,” writes Stout. No it’s not. Stout attempts to explain their rationale, though we’re pretty sure the Herald’s Kevin Franck, who has urged Dems to make more of a stink about Baker’s recent patronage-related scandals, isn’t  going to buy it.

Boston Herald

Dukakis: ‘Dithering’ MassDOT should stick to original South Coast rail plan

MassDOT isn’t going to like this. Former Gov. Michael Dukakis, long a champion of public transit, says the state should stick to the original South Coast rail plan of going through Stoughton, not Middleboro, and he criticized what he called “dithering around” from one proposed alternative to another, reports Mike Lawrence at the Standard-Times, via Wicked Local. Dukakis also questioned MassDOT’s estimate that the cost of going through Stoughton had risen to $3.4 billion from $2.2 billion.

Wicked Local

Howard Dean, the former DNC chair, is touting a way to help third parties thrive?

It’s a little odd to see the former Democratic National Committee chair Howard Dean, also the former Vermont governor and Democratic presidential candidate, tout a new “ranked-choice” form of voting as a way to strengthen third-party candidacies. But that’s exactly what he’s doing in a NYT op-ed, pointing at a statewide Maine ballot question next month that would establish “ranked-choice” elections for governor, Congress and the state Legislature. Dean insists ranked-choice is the wave of the future and something the two major parties shouldn’t fear, noting that both President Obama and Sen. John McCain have expressed support for the idea. But … but it’s still odd to see the former chair of one of the major parties touting the idea.

NYT

‘Usury’ charges questioned in Quincy homebuyer program

The city of Quincy has had to reduce what it charged participants in its first-time homebuyers loan program. Why? To avoid running afoul of the state’s law against charging usury-level rates of more than 18 percent interest, Jessica Truant of the Patriot Ledger reports. According to the Ledger’s review of the program, nine of 13 participant paid a total of $56,000 more than they would have if the city strictly followed the repayment formula laid out in the application for the program. 

Patriot Ledger

Lawrence youth teams left homeless by trashed stadium

School and youth sports teams in Lawrence are likely without a home stadium for the rest of the year as the city continues to literally pick up the pieces after a music festival trashed Memorial Stadium, Mac Cerullo of the Eagle-Tribune reports. The field, left unusable by broken beer bottles and other damage, was also scheduled to host a regional marching band competition later this month. The city has set the wheels in motion to borrow the $875,000 it estimates repairs will cost, and then to sue to recover those funds from the organizers of the Brazilian.

Eagle-Tribune

Taunton landlord facing pressure on methadone clinic

A Taunton property owner is under pressure from neighbors and fellow business owners to end the lease to a methadone clinic, with onetime opponents of his plan to convert the property into housing now on board with that proposal if it includes moving the clinic out, Charles Winokoor of the Taunton Gazette reports. Neighbors say the clinic, which Habit OPCO has operated since 2009 after it moved there from a mobile van parked on the former Taunton State Hospital grounds, causes unwanted noise, trash and criminal activity.

Taunton Gazette

Today’s Headlines

Metro

Housing developers bet big on East Boston – Boston Globe

First-time homebuyers charged to the hilt by Quincy loan program – Patriot Ledger

Boston’s average apartment rent is third-highest in the U.S. – Boston Business Journal

Massachusetts

SAT scores across Central Mass dip on latest test – Telegram & Gazette

For most area lawmakers, answer to Question 1 is No – Lowell Sun

Local GOP women react to Trump controversy – Telegram & Gazette

Transparency changing municipal relationships with public – MetroWest Daily News

Plan to privatize T sets up battle among union, Baker, lawmakers – Gloucester Times

Sports teams left without a home field – Eagle-Tribune

Taunton landlord won’t budget under pressure to evict methadone clinic – Taunton Gazette

MetroWest has champagne problems – Worcester Business Journal

Nation

An unusually dark, bitter face-off – Washington Post

Trump wanted to put accusers in family box at debate – Washington Post

Trump didn’t ease women’s doubts – New York Times

Conway’s sticking with Trump … unless – Politico

Kelly Ayotte says Trump should drop out of the race – Boston Globe

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