The Download

Silencing speech or rejecting hate?

When then-Gov. Deval Patrick stepped to the microphone for the first press conference the evening of the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013, the first question stopped him and nearly everyone in attendance in their tracks. “Why were the loud speakers telling people in the audience to be calm moments before the bombs went off?” the(...)

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The Senate’s big whiff

The process of passing legislation on Beacon Hill is a lot like a game of ping pong. The House passes a bill and sends it over to the Senate. The Senate tweaks the legislation and sends it back to the House. The back and forth goes on until final language is agreed upon. Then the(...)

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A real-life mystery at Boston library

In a building whose shelves are packed with gripping fictional whodunits, it’s a real-life whodunit that is also a whodunwhat. On Tuesday, the Boston Herald broke the story that three Boston Public Library facilities managers were on unpaid leave pending the outcome of an investigation. A BPL spokesman confirmed that the action was taken on(...)

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Lawmakers leave a lot on the table

  Massachusetts lawmakers suspended their rules and went beyond their midnight end-of-session deadline, but still they couldn’t finish all the work they had planned to do. The House adjourned at 1:12 a.m. Wednesday and the Senate ended its session at 1:20 a.m. When the dust settled, the two chambers had approved bills dealing with opioid(...)

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The Codcast: Words matter in immigration debate

To say there’s a chasm as wide as the Rio Grande between both sides of the immigration debate would be an understatement. The conversation about compromise is a non-starter because neither side can even agree on what terms to use. US Attorney for Massachusetts Andrew Lelling, in a recent sit-down with CommonWealth, acknowledged his office(...)

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Growing calls to tackle traffic’s toll

Never mind the Democratic Legislature or smart growth and transportation advocacy groups. Gov. Charlie Baker is now getting pressure to embrace a pilot program calling for variable-price tolling from the state’s leading conservative think tank. Baker has strongly signaled his dislike of a provision of the state budget sitting on his desk that calls for(...)

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Maybe busing isn’t the (only) problem

School busing in Boston is a four-letter word, a phrase often spewed as a profanity whenever the subject of the city’s schools comes up in conversations, which is to say all the time. Going back to the 1970s, when the city exploded into a race and class war over the yellow beasts rumbling through the(...)

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