Politics

Beating the craps out of each other

Beating the craps out of each other

A Massachusetts-Connecticut border war over gambling stirs fears of an Atlantic City meltdown

Illustration by Phil Foster CASINOS ARE ABOUT GAMBLING. Take away the restaurants, the shops, and the entertainment and what remains is the foundational reason for a casino’s existence—getting people to come and leave their money behind, lured by the slim chance they might walk away with a fatter wallet. Those who build and operate the(...)

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Progressive politics from the ground up 

Progressive politics from the ground up 

Heather Gerken has spent years making the case that state and local government is where the left should push change. With the election of Donald Trump, progressive federalism’s moment may have arrived.

Photographs by Frank Curran STATES’ RIGHTS HAS a long and ugly history in this country. The phrase has often served as code for the segregationist Jim Crow policies that southern states clung to in the face of federal pressure in the 1950s and ’60s. It made progressives wary of a bigger role for states in(...)

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It’s not my party, but I’ll vote if I want to 

It’s not my party, but I’ll vote if I want to 

Party primaries are increasingly non-partisan as party registration fades

AN EVER-GROWING WAVE of unenrolled voters is slowly overtaking Massachusetts political parties. Old Massachusetts Democrats and Republicans are dying off and more and more of their grandkids are ditching the two-party structure. As the overall number of voters keeps rising, the percent of undeclared voters climbs, while the share of both Democrats and Republicans shrinks modestly.(...)

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Walsh plays hardball at Quincy Market

Walsh plays hardball at Quincy Market

Mayor seeks to redo lease for higher return

BOSTON MAYOR MARTY WALSH is trying to play hardball with the company that owns the lease on Faneuil Hall Marketplace. City officials and heavily redacted emails obtained under the Public Records Law confirm that the city, which owns the marketplace, is attempting to renegotiate the terms of the lease, which dates back to 1975 and(...)

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Public records harassment tough sell

Public records harassment tough sell

Enforcement rare on statute aimed to give communities relief

WELLESLEY RESIDENT RONALD ALEXANDER seems to be exactly the sort of guy lawmakers had in mind when they included a harassment provision in the new Public Records Law. Alexander has filed more than 200 public records requests with Wellesley since 2013. He has filed 162 requests with the school department and school committee, 40 with(...)

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Picking winners and losers

Picking winners and losers

For state government, it’s tough to say no

IN THIS ISSUE OF CommonWealth, we by happenstance ended up with three features that take an in-depth look at three forms of government intervention in the state economy. All of them are well-meaning and designed to create jobs and spur the state’s economy to greater heights. But the stories also demonstrate the limitations of government(...)

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Lawmakers rush overdue budget to Baker

Lawmakers rush overdue budget to Baker

House satisfied with spending bill; Senate calls it “painful”

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE LARGELY DISCARDING SPENDING plans they approved in the spring, the House and Senate on Friday sent Gov. Charlie Baker a $40.2 billion state budget that holds state spending flat, includes higher employer health care assessments, and, according to some Democrats, underscores the need for higher taxes and new revenues. The bill(...)

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Warren the redistributionist

Warren the redistributionist

Atlantic magazine article misreads senator's stand on growing income disparity

THE CURRENT ISSUE of The Atlantic carries an article by its national editor, Franklin Foer, entitled “What’s Wrong with the Democrats.” In it, he argues that the Democratic Party should become a party of liberal populism. He devotes part of the piece to Massachusetts’s own senior senator, Elizabeth Warren, because he likes her version of liberal(...)

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Lawmakers signal budget accord reached

Lawmakers signal budget accord reached

No details provided but a vote is planned for Friday

THE LEAD BUDGET NEGOTIATORS for the House and Senate announced a deal Thursday evening to resolve differences between the branches over an annual state budget for the fiscal year that began Saturday, indicating that the legislation will be filed Friday morning with a vote coming later in the day. No further details on the spending(...)

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