Saturday, December 05, 2009
Endorsement of Mike Capuano for Senate
This may not come as a shock to many of you as I have been pushing many of you to vote for Mike Capuano for the open Senate seat since September.
We Democrats have been blessed with an incredible field of well versed candidates, I can see any of them being worthy of the Senate seat. With that being said one candidate stands above the crowd due to his intelligence, dedication, experience and dare I say sheer tenacity. Notice how I neglected to mention issues? This is because they are all very similar on the issues, as has been said MULTIPLE times, while differences are present they are not as visible as ability. I believe Mike Capuano is the best person for this Senate seat.
His dedication to his current position as my Congressman (8th Congressional District) has been strong and steady over the past ten years and he has managed to continue to represent us even as he runs for Senate. As my Congressman Mike Capuano has gotten involved in issues as local as helping to obtain funding for local parks and as international as his determined drive to shed light on the genocide of innocent people in Sudan. Mike not only voted against the war in Iraq he also voted against a bill called the Patriot Act (I am sure he was not a supporter of the House of Representatives food courts renaming French Fries to Freedom Fries in the early 2000's either.) Looking back at those votes it is easy to say they were the right choice but at the time his NO vote was in the minority and was considered unpatriotic by many, this helps illustrate his willingness to be a leader both in voice and in action.
His staff is attentive to local issues and tend to be just as knowledgeable as the Congressman is on a wide range of issues as well. His ability to select and manage a superior staff would be most beneficial in filling the roll of Ted Kennedy , an office that was exceptional at working on constituent services and local issues.
The word "anger" comes up every so often when people are asked to describe Mike Capuano. My first reaction is to chuckle and attribute it to "passion". Upon retrospection I have determined that I was wrong, Mike Capuano can in fact get angry. By his own admission he can be angry, quite angry. I have one simple question though; "Why is this anger a bad thing?" If Mike Capuano is angry, so am I. I was angry that those Hyatt workers got fired after unwittingly training their own replacements, I later found out that Mike Capuano was angry about that too. I am angry that poor people do not have access to health insurance, so is Mike Capuano. I am downright furious that there is a continued genocide in the Sudan, that we have lost our focus on the war on terror, that large financial institutions have handed us our wrecked economy now that they are done with it and that political campaigns cost so much money. What I have seen from Mike Capuano is that this so called "anger" has shown itself when other people are being mistreated or his family is at risk. Maybe it is the working class blue collar upbringing in me but well managed directed anger can do great wonders, I believe Mike Capuano proves this through his actions on all the issues I just mentioned.
The argument has been made that Mike is a great Congressman, that we should leave him where he is now for seniority purposes. While I am sure this is meant to flatter it misses a crucial point. Our Nation is built on the concept of promoting the best, allowing the cream to rise to the top. It is nonsensical to tell someone, wheter they be an Administrative Assistant or a US Congressman that they are too good at their current position to move up. Imagine someone telling you that you can not be promoted because you are too good at your current position and instead your company promotes someone with less credentials because they are new to the system, you would be angry I am sure (see above.)
Looking over Mike Capuano's resume I ask that you focus on a few key pieces:
Mayor of a Somerville Massachusetts, led the city during a time of economic revival
Congressman of a diverse (ethnic, cultural, socio-economical, geographic) district
Global travel to visit war torn regions, meet with world leaders and discuss issues all on a relatively meager budget.
Prior to election as Mayor involvement in the PTA and as a City Alderman
As a Chelsea City Councilor myself I know that Mike Capuano knows how his actions will affect local cities and towns. I know that Mike understands what unfunded mandates mean to a community low on funds. Congressman Capuano understands issues affecting local students. It is not theoretical, he knows because he has been there. I can also trust that he knows how his actions will affect those across the world, how others view the United States and how best to present ourselves to the world at large. His experience in the House of Representatives is also invaluable in the form of a comprehensive understanding of how the system works.
As I mentioned earlier most of the candidates feel the same way on a host of issues. The real difference lies in ability and determination. It does not matter how much you care about something if you do not know what actions to take to make it happen. Everyone knows the text book version of how the Senate works, it seems so simple and civilized. The reality is that the Senate is one of the toughest places in the world to operate, I spent time down in Senator Kerry's office and even in my limited capacity I could see how hard it was to convince other Senators your position is the best. It takes a combination of finesse, toughness and knowledge of the minutia of the rules to pass legislation and to protect the interests of Massachusetts. It is rare to find all those traits in one person... luckily we have Mike Capuano.
December 8th, Democratic Primary (Independants can vote too)