Shawn Zeller

Washington Correspondent

Stories by Shawn Zeller

Steve Lynch’s balancing act

Steve Lynch’s balancing act

Is the lunch-bucket Democrat out of step with his own party?

NO ONE WOULD question the wisdom of a gambler who put money on US Rep. Stephen Lynch securing another easy win next year. Still, the odds are changing a bit, in part because the demographics of his district are changing and the Democratic Party in Massachusetts is moving away from him to the left. Since(...)

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What can the Mass. delegation do?

What can the Mass. delegation do?

With the GOP in charge, the short answer is, not a lot.

MASSACHUSETTS VOTERS RAN against the grain on Election Day and returned to Washington the nine incumbents who represent the Bay State in the House. They join fellow Democrats Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey in the Senate. So when their Republicans colleagues who control both the House and Senate move this year to push through a(...)

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Can Elizabeth Warren legislate?

Can Elizabeth Warren legislate?

If Dems do well, she’ll have to put policy ahead of politics

DURING HER FIRST four years representing Massachusetts in the Senate, Elizabeth Warren has become the chamber’s leading progressive voice. Hillary Clinton considered her for the vice presidential slot and, while Warren didn’t get it, she’s become a valued surrogate, with her Twitter war with Donald Trump and her ability to rally the supporters of Clinton’s(...)

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Slow, steady on military sex assaults

Slow, steady on military sex assaults

Tsongas having impact focusing on incremental change

SHORTLY AFTER TAKING HER SEAT in the House in 2007, US Rep. Niki Tsongas of Lowell attended a luncheon for soldiers wounded in combat. Tsongas approached some women at the luncheon and mentioned a recent hearing she’d attended on sexual assault in the military. One of the women, a military nurse, told her that she(...)

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MA congressional delegation itching for change

MA congressional delegation itching for change

Most want to end seniority; some want to dump Pelosi

GOING INTO THE 2016 ELECTION, Republicans hold 246 seats in the House of Representatives. Democrats have 188. For Massachusetts, with its nine-member, all-Democrat delegation, this is a very bad situation and one that’s unlikely to get better any time soon. Among the nine, the angst is palpable. The minority party in the House enjoys almost(...)

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Waiting his turn

Waiting his turn

Richie Neal, a centrist Democrat from Massachusetts and a master of the inside, bides his time at Ways and Means

PAUL RYAN’S ASCENSION to the House speaker’s chair in October meant some reshuffling at the Ways and Means committee he was leaving behind, a panel with jurisdiction over taxes, trade, Social Security, Medicare, and welfare. The GOP picked Texan Kevin Brady to move up, as Rep. Richard Neal and his fellow Democrats looked on. For(...)

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The politics of patents

The politics of patents

Washington infighting centers on trolls and risk

THE WAY BOSTON UNIVERSITY President Bob Brown sees it, the Massachusetts economy is fueled by a pipeline of innovation running from the state’s great research universities to start-up companies. University professors discover something and patent it. They then license their idea to firms that can bring it to market. Even if no one gets rich,(...)

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A rookie on Pelosi’s team

A rookie on Pelosi’s team

Clark is raising money for Democrats and most (but not all) of the time blasting the GOP

WHEN SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES gathered in the House chamber in January to hear President Obama’s State of the Union address, Katherine Clark, the Melrose representative who is now serving her first full term, strode up to Mitch McConnell, grabbed his hand, and wouldn’t let go. Her aim was to convince the Kentucky Republican, who is the(...)

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Kennedy fights federal data breach law

Kennedy fights federal data breach law

Says proposal not as strong as many states' regulations

AFTER HACKERS STOLE data from Target, Home Depot, and other companies in recent years, President Obama called on Congress to enact legislation setting a national standard governing what companies must do if their networks are breached. Both Republicans and Democrats in the capital want to do something to improve cybersecurity, but getting to a final product(...)

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Markey’s strategy in Washington

Markey’s strategy in Washington

Keep pressure on president and hope for the best

IT WAS A COLD February 5 when Ed Markey took the stage in the Radio and TV Gallery of the US Capitol. There were only a few reporters there to hear him but Markey, a long-time Malden congressman and now Massachusetts’s junior senator, was feeling jubilant. Earlier that day, Tom Wheeler, the chairman of the(...)

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