Happening Today

Cannibas Control, Markey on guns, Remembering Iwo Jima

Cannabis Control Commission regulators hold a meeting to receive an update on a license tracking system and another ‘seed-to-sale’ marijuana tracking system, 12th floor, 101 Federal St., Boston, 10:30 a.m.

— U.S. Sen. Edward Markey holds a press conference to call for action on gun safety, including reinstatement of the assault weapons ban and passage of his bill to end the ban on gun violence research, Mothers for Justice and Equality, 184 Dudley Street, Roxbury, 11 a.m.

Marine Corps League hosts its annual Iwo Jima Day observance, Memorial Hall, 11 a.m.

Citizens for Juvenile Justice holds a forum on data and racial equity in the juvenile justice system, with panelists including Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph Gants, economist and Harvard PhD candidate Felix Owusu, and Massachusetts Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative coordinator Lynsey Heffernan, Massachusetts Bar Association, 20 West St., Boston, 3 p.m.

— Today is the deadline for candidates to submit nomination papers to local election officials in the race for the First Suffolk Senate seat, last held by Linda Dorcena Forry, 5 p.m.

— Rep. Harold Naughton holds a community forum on what the Massachusetts Nurses Association describes as ‘efforts by UMass Health Alliance to eliminate nearly all ambulatory services at Clinton Hospital,’ Clinton Town Hall, 242 Church St., Clinton, 6 p.m.

— Historian Gordon Wood gives a Presidents’ Day talk on his new book, ‘Friends Divided: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson,’ Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Columbia Point, Boston, 6 p.m.

For more calendar listings, check out State House News Service’s Daily Advances (pay wall) and MassterList’s Beacon Hill Town Square below.

Today’s Stories

In case you missed MassterList over the holiday …

MassterList didn’t rest over the President’s Day holiday. Check out our posts yesterday on Gov. Baker’s backup clean-power plan, Mayor Walsh blaming big political rallies for soaring police overtime pay, the spike in sexual-harassment claims in Massachusetts, legislation that would ban harassment ‘silencing tactics,’ and preliminary jockeying for Sen. Eileen Donoghue’s seat.

MassterList Monday

Tweet truce: Trump endorses Romney, Romney thanks Trump, armistice still holding

After Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell urged President Donald Trump to get behind Mitt Romney’s bid for U.S. Senate in Utah, Trump did just that yesterday, tweeting an endorsement for his fellow Republican who once called the president a “phony” and a “fraud.” The New York Times and the Washington Post have the details.

Gloves come off in GOP debate over ‘neutrality’

House minority leader Bradley H. Jones has had it with the Massachusetts Republican Party pretending to be “neutral” in campaigns when a true political wing-nut is running, i.e., anti-LGBT gadfly and Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Lively. Jones has asked the state party’s top leadership to vote on specifically barring the organization from helping Lively, despite party “neutrality” rules, reports the Globe’s Frank Phillips.

Boston Globe

Report: Green Line is ‘stretched to limit,’ more derailments feared

After the T gets its shiny new Red and Orange line trains, maybe it can turn its attention to the tracks all its cars travel over, especially Green Line tracks. The Herald’s Dan Atkinson and Matt Stout have a story on a new state DPU report that says the Green Line’s tracks are in desperate need of repair and upgrades. Btw: The Herald also reports on how the T is finally moving its payroll to the state’s payroll system, bring more “organization” to its accounting books.

Boston Herald

The case of the T’s $100,000 rest room

A fiscal watchdog says state transportation and MBTA officials may have been out of line when they fast-tracked a project to install a bathroom and kitchenette in the Transportation Building without putting any of the work out to bid, Jon Wells and Karen Anderson at WCVB-TV report. The work was done through the T’s on-call construction services contract, meaning that state procurement laws weren’t triggered, but the Pioneer Institute says that exemption is meant for emergencies. Of course, if you have to go … 


Today’s simple T logo could have been so much more …

One looks like something out of a Batman comic book. Another looks like an old PanAm airlines sign, complete with Art Deco aeronautic wings. What are they? Proposed logos for the MBTA when the transit agency was first created in 1964. MBTA History Train, via Universal Hub, has more on the long-ago rejected logos. Some aren’t that bad, btw.

MBTA History Train

Students plan anti-gun ‘die in’ and rally in Boston

In the wake of last week’s mass school shooting in Florida, local students plan to replicate in Boston yesterday’s “die-in” (also called a “lie-in”) protest by teens outside the White House, as part of a nationwide student movement to promote gun control, reports the Herald’s Marie Szaniszlo. Meanwhile, Alison King at NBC Boston reports that thousands of teens and adults are expected to show up next month at a planned Boston Common gun-control rally, one of several such rallies to be held across the country.

The Student Shooting Industrial Complex

It’s come to this: A Lowell company, started by a former Essex County deputy sheriff and firearms instructor, is now selling bullet-resistant school backpacks, notebooks, three-ring binder inserts and nylon and denim jackets “stealthly fitted with anti-ballistic panels roughly the weight of a 20-ounce bottle of soda that can be held up to shield against most small-arms gunfire,” reports the Herald’s Laurel Sweet.

Boston Herald

Former ‘Ellen’ assistant launches state rep bid on Cape

Joshua Mason, a former Los Angeles resident whose resume includes time working with daytime TV host Ellen DeGeneres, has launched a bid to capture the 1st Barnstable House District seat held by Timothy Whelan, a Brewster Republican. Geoff Spillane of the Cape Cod Times reports that Mason’s platform will lean heavily on his own experiences as a millennial, including advocating for more affordable housing and focusing efforts to combat the opioid crisis on rehabilitation and treatment. 

Cape Cod Times

Hamlin says he’ll challenge Dooley, again

Rematch alert: Plainville resident Brian Hamlin says he’ll make another run at the 9th Norfolik District representative seat held by Shawn Dooley, Jim Hand reports in the Sun Chronicle. Hamlin lost to Dooley, a Republican, by more than 20 percentage points in 2016. 

Sun Chronicle

So why isn’t Elizabeth Warren traveling to key early primary states like other prez wannabes?

They give no explanation, but we found it curious that The Hill ran a story on how Democratic presidential wannabes are busy traveling to key primary states – and Elizabeth Warren isn’t even mentioned. Sure, Bernie’s mentioned (traveling to both Iowa and New Hampshire), as are Seth Moulton (Iowa) and John Kerry (Iowa). But no Warren. Turns out, according to this Politico story last month, Warren has deliberately shied away from traveling to either state, perhaps, as the article suggests, to focus on her re-election here.

The Hill

Pull out the magnifying glass: Another small policy difference spotted between Capuano and Pressley

First it was a small difference between the two progressives on the proposed Mexican border wall. Now it’s a small difference between U.S. Rep. Michael Capuano and Democratic challenger Ayanna Pressley over the future of Wynn Resorts, reports SHNS’s Andy Metzger at Wicked Local. Their gender and race differences aside, you really do need a magnifying glass to spot the policy differences between the two.

Wicked Local

Public Radio’s long list of the fallen: Ashbrook, Keillor, Lopate, Hockenberry etc.

The NYT takes a look at how Public Radio’s image and credibility have taken a hit with so many of its high-profile talent getting the boot as a result of the #MeToo movement. Former WBUR host Tom Ashbrook is prominently mentioned, though he was only swept up during the #MeToo movement, not because he had a true #MeToo moment.


Is Kennedy too reasonable for today’s hyper-partisan voters?

The headline on Globe columnist Joan Vennochi’s column reads: “Is this Kennedy bold enough for the next generation?” Actually, the question is whether U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy III is too reasonable for today’s hyper-partisan generation of voters, as Joan rightly notes in the body of her column. The fact is Kennedy is following in the “pragmatic idealist” footsteps of his great uncle, JFK, who took all sorts of grief from those to his left for not being sufficiently leftist. Many people tend to forget that political factoid from a few generations ago.

Boston Globe

From Russian with love: Competing political rallies in America

Speaking of hyper-partisan politics, there’s no local angle here (not yet, anyway). But definitely check out this New York Times piece about how Russian operatives tried to plant discord among American voters by planning, supporting and encouraging competing protests and counter-protests across the country, deftly manipulating deep left-right and hyper-partisan divisions. In a weird way, you almost have to tip your hat to them. They sure know our politics.


The millionaire tax: ‘A brilliantly marketed bad idea’

Edward Murphy, the former head of three state agencies and a former health-care executive, says passage of the proposed millionaire’s tax will only hinder the state’s ability to respond to recent federal tax changes, specifically changes to the state and local tax (SALT) deduction. That deduction was supposed to soften the blow of the millionaire tax – but now it’s not going to be fully available to those hit by the proposed tax, he argues at CommonWealth magazine.


Perplexing and non-perplexing discussions on race

The Globe’s Kevin Cullen has a good column this morning on how it’s so difficult to discuss race in Boston and across the country. He defends the BPD’s recent Black History Month tweet on Red Auerbach, saying it’s perplexing to many why the tweet was so controversial. But what’s not perplexing, he writes, is the obnoxious Laura Ingraham’s attacks on LeBron James and Kevin Durant for having the nerve to express political opinions.

Boston Globe

Score one for Healey: Federal judge rules against Trump on energy efficiency standards

From Shira Schoenberg at MassLive: “A federal judge has ordered the U.S. Department of Energy to finalize standards for energy efficiency, in response to a lawsuit brought by a coalition of attorneys general, including Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey. … Under President Donald Trump, the department never submitted the standards to the Office of the Federal Register, so they never went into effect. The Department of Energy said it is still considering the standards.”


A Yawkey Way name change by spring?

  Jen McCaffrey at MassLive reports that the process to rename Yawkey Way outside Fenway Park is still in the works and that Red Sox president Sam Kennedy is signaling a name change could occur closer to Opening Day than the All-Star break. 


Partners joins countless others in outsourcing tech jobs

So Partners HealthCare, the largest private employer in Massachusetts, is letting go of 100 coding employees as their jobs are outsourced to India, as Liz Kowalczyk and Priyanka Dayal McCluskey report at the Globe. It’s a significant move, but we’re not sure the layoffs are really about the “financial pressures facing Partners.” Instead, it’s about how Partners, as a nonprofit, is now increasingly behaving like countless other for-profit firms, here and elsewhere, by outsourcing their jobs overseas – or by outsourcing jobs to workers brought here via special worker visas. That’s the ongoing story.

Boston Globe

Gloucester task force: Pot money doesn’t add up, thanks to state mandates

A Gloucester task force studying the impacts of legal marijuana says the city faces a number of unfunded mandates imposed by the state that would likely wipe out any gains made by taxing local pot businesses, Ray Lamont of the Gloucester Times reports. Gloucester currently has a temporary moratorium in place on recreational weed businesses, but the city says it wants the state to foot the tab for some associated costs, such as training police to be drug detection experts. 

Gloucester Times

Kick Butts Day 2018

The 84 Movement

Bridging the Bonded: Faith, Politics, and Diplomacy in a Polarized Age

Fletcher Initiative on Religion, Law & Diplomacy

Starr Forum: Is Democracy Dying?

MIT Center for International Studies

Mass. Marijuana Summit II: New regs, federal threat, financial hurdles

A dynamic and controversial industry is only months from launching in Massachusetts. The regulations are complex and the barriers to entry formidable. How can we make sense of the arrival of recreational marijuana, an industry that may soon exceed $1 billion annually?

State House News Forum

Today’s Headlines


GE sells off part of one of its oldest businesses: Lighting – Boston Business Journal

Boston students to march against guns – Universal Hub


Seized scallops a ‘bright light’ for homeless veterans in New Bedford – Standard-Times

Frustration, fines mount as prominent Lowell building decays – Lowell Sun

Judge warns Springfield woman posting bail for others may mean losing her ‘hard-earned money’ – MassLive

Former MIllbury nursing home to become detox – Telegram & Gazette


Russian bots moved quickly to exploit Florida shooting – New York Times

More than twice as many women are running for Congress in 2018 compared to 2016 – NPR

How to Contact MASSterList

Send tips to Matt Murphy: Editor@MASSterList.com. For advertising inquiries and job board postings, please contact Dylan Rossiter: Publisher@MASSterList.com or (857) 370-1156. Follow @MASSterList on Twitter.

Subscribe to MASSterList

Start your morning with MASSterList’s chronicle of news and informed analysis about politics, policy, media, and influence in Massachusetts. Plus, get an inside look at Beacon Hill’s hottest new job postings.