Pot rollcall, SJC nominee vote and more …
Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security hears testimony on more than 25 bills, including legislation requiring sheriffs to obtain permission before transporting prisoners out of state, Room A-2, 10 a.m. … Former U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma provides the keynote address at a Manhattan Institute conference on prescription drug costs and ways to expand access and speed up innovation, The W Boston, 100 Stuart St., Boston, 10 a.m. … Senate President Stanley Rosenberg is interviewed on Boston Herald Radio’s ‘Morning Meeting’ program, 70 Fargo St., Boston, 10 a.m. … The House and Senate hold formal sessions with votes anticipated on a conference committee report altering the voter-approved marijuana legalization law, 11 a.m. … House Committee on Technology and Intergovernmental Affairs holds a hearing about cybersecurity and technology, Room 437, 11 a.m. … Governor’s Council meets to vote on, and likely approve, Gov. Baker’s nomination of Scott Kafker to the Supreme Judicial Court, Council Chamber, Room 360, 12 p.m. … U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch is a guest on ‘Boston Public Radio,’ WGBH-FM 89.7, 12 p.m … State House News Service reporter Katie Lannan, Boston Globe reporter David Abel and former Environmental League of Massachusetts president George Bachrach talk to interns about the media, Non-Profit Center, 89 South St., Boston, 12 p.m. … Boston City Councilor and mayoral candidate Tito Jackson sits down with WBUR’S Meghna Chakrabarti and the Globe’s Meghan Irons to discuss his candidacy, UMass Boston, Healey Library, Room 3507, 100 Morrissey Blvd., 3 p.m. … Gov. Charlie Baker joins Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver and MassDOT officials to tour a road project on Route 38 in Tewksbury, 2341 Main Street, Tewksbury, 4 p.m.
Corner Office shakeup – and shaken up
An emotional Gov. Charlie Baker “bid a teary farewell” yesterday to his chief of staff, Steven Kadish, in the first major staff shake-up with the administration, reports SHNS’s Matt Murphy. Kristen Lepore, Baker’s trusted budget chief, will take Kadish’s place, while Michael J. Heffernan, DOR commissioner, will succeed Lepore as secretary of Administration and Finance.
The Globe’s Joshua Miller reports that Kadish is leaving due to simple exhaustion – and a desire to rest and be with his family. He has no other plans at this time. Taking half the summer off is actually not a bad idea, come to think of it.
Not shaken up: Locals celebrate implosion of Senate health-care bill
No local tears were shed yesterday after the demise of Senate Republicans’ latest attempt to repeal ObamaCare. U.S. Sen. Ed Markey and U.S. Rep. Richard Neal both hailed the Senate failure that could have, among other things, led to dramatic federal cuts in Medicaid, reports Shannon Young at MassLive. Meanwhile, Senate President Stan Rosenberg said the Senate fiasco was “fantastic” news, reports SHNS’s Michael Norton (pay wall). Reflecting the views of other local pols, Gov. Charlie Baker said it’s time to focus on fixing ObamaCare, particularly its insurance-exchange feature, reports SHNS’s Matt Murphy (pay wall).
Post-healthcare fiasco, Speaker Ryan to visit Lawrence
As Congressional Republicans’ efforts to repeal ObamaCare lie in shambles, U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan tomorrow is visiting the New Balance factory in Lawrence to talk about … tax reform. The Globe’s Jim O’Sullivan has more on the visit, though not much more.
Pot vote today amid questions, lots of questions
Lawmakers are poised to tackle the compromise marijuana-regulations package as early as today, reports SHNS (pay wall). But there are lots of questions and confusion swirling around the package, such as Treasurer Deb Goldberg saying she has “no idea” if retail pot shops can open as scheduled a year from now (SHNS report at Salem News). Then there’s a clause in the legislation calling for creation of a new Cannabis Advisory Board by Aug. 1, a somewhat ambitious timetable (SHNS at MetroWest Daily News). Of course, there’s also the issue whether the bill’s provisions even pass constitutional muster. But Senate President Stan Rosenberg told WGBH yesterday that legislative lawyers gave the package a legal thumbs up.
Globe to Dempsey: Just go
The Boston Globe’s editorial board says that state Rep. Brian Dempsey’s stepping down as chair of the House Ways and Means Committee isn’t enough. Dempsey, who’s leaving the State House for a lobbying gig at ML Strategies, also needs to resign his legislative seat, immediaely, the Globe writes.
Dempsey-seat derby underway in Haverhill
Though Rep. Brian Dempsey has yet to step down and therefore no date has been set yet for a special election to fill his seat , three elected officials in Haverhill, and probably many more, have their eyes set on winning Dempsey’s coveted State House post, Peter Francis of the Eagle-Tribune reports.
Warren leads Trump by 7 points in poll matchup, but she’s not the strongest Dem candidate
As his domestic agenda collapses around him in Washington, President Trump sure seems vulnerable these days – and a recent survey by Public Policy Polling proves it, reports the Hill. In hypothetical matchups, Trump trails former Vice President Joe Biden by a whopping 16 points, Sen. Bernie Sanders by 13 points and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts by 7 points. Trump also trails Democratic Sens. Cory Booker of N.J. and Kamala Harris of California.
Fyi: The Globe’s Joan Vennochi writes that Republican critics have a “lot to learn” if they think they can scare Warren away from running for president one day.
Is R.I. Gov. Gina Raimondo eyeing a run for president?
Speaking of presidential politics: U.S. Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, two progressive New Englanders, are often talked about as potential presidential candidates in 2020. But another New Englander may be eying a 2020 bid for the White House: Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo, reports the NYT, in a piece about moderate Dem governors angling for a possible run, including Gov. Steve Bullock of Montana. No mention of U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, the subject of previous NYT speculation about Dems interested in running for president.
Joe Kennedy III on a presidential run: ‘Furthest thing from my mind’
Here’s one New Englander who adamantly says he’s not running for president, despite a recent Matt Viser piece in Town & Country (not to be confused with the Boston Globe) touting his presidential stock: U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy III. “Furthest thing from my mind,” Kennedy told SHNS’s Colin Young earlier this week.
Diehl is certainly no Tito when it comes to fundraising
Republican state Rep. Geoff Diehl, who’s expected to announce next month he’s running for U.S. Senate, has raised more than $343,000 for his bid to unseat incumbent Elizabeth Warren. It’s a somewhat impressive number – until you think of the millions Warren is raising across the country.
Walsh confesses: He was initially a worrywart workaholic who regretted winning
The Globe’s Neil Swidey takes a look at Mayor Marty Walsh, who admits he initially felt overwhelmed after taking office and discovered he had become an insecure workaholic who regretted winning election. The waves of insecurity have obviously passed, as he seeks re-election this year.
‘Animal House’ will look at the ‘seedy underbelly’ of Beacon Hill
The next Game of Thrones, digital-radio version? Perhaps not. But Herald reporter Hillary Chabot is going to give it a try with a new Boston Herald Radio show called ‘Animal House,’ a weekly look at the “seedy underbelly of the Golden Dome, with an eye toward present-day shockers,” according to the Herald.
What prompted Globe CEO’s sudden departure?
After less than seven months on the job, Doug Franklin is stepping down as CEO of the Boston Globe, citing strategic “differences” with owner John Henry, who, along with his wife Linda, will now assume a more active role in running the newspaper, reports Dan Kennedy at WGBH and Don Seiffert at the BBJ. Kennedy notes that the Globe’s own story on Franklin’s departure points out recent problems at the paper’s Taunton printing plant. The Herald’s Jack Encarnacao says the split came after an “apparent clash over the Globe’s future,” i.e. a digital future (as envisioned by Franklin) versus a downsized future (Henry).
Casinos’ last-call perk has its share of critics
Public safety officials and casino opponents are among those sounding warnings after the state budget process resulted in the state’s future casinos being able to request the right to serve alcohol until 4 a.m., then start serving again at 8 a.m. Local bars and restaurants say the carve-out puts them at a competitive disadvantage. Dan Atkinson and Jordan Graham of the Herald have more.
Taking aim at Beacon Hill legislation that would punish political boycotts
Katherine Franke, a professor at Columbia Law School, thinks a bill winding its way through the State House – one that would pressure state contractors not to engage in certain types of political boycotts – is clearly an attempt by pro-Israel activists to thwart boycotts by pro-Palestinian activists. Writing at the Globe, she says Massachusetts – of all places, as the home of the Boston Tea Party and other past political boycotts – needs to reject the bill.
Framingham’s shift to city government may snag developments
Irony alert: The shift to a city form of government—which was supposed to streamline economic development—may actually slow development of a 152-room hotel off Route 9. Under the new charter voters adopted in April, current boards and committees are supposed to refrain from making major policy decisions until after Framingham’s first city elections later this year, reports Jim Haddadin of the MetroWest Daily News.
He’ll carry the under-18 vote in a landslide
With 40 cities in the Commonwealth, it’s not easy for a candidate to cut through the clutter of mayoral campaign announcements and policy statements. But would-be Holyoke Mayor Jay Ferreira has found a way: He’s proposing the city place a moratorium on standardized testing of students in the district, which has been under state receivership since 2015, Mike Plaisance of MassLive reports.
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