Amore juggling auditor campaign with museum day job
Diana DiZoglio, the Democratic candidate for auditor, tapes a debate this morning with her Republican opponent before heading off to western Massachusetts to campaign in Northampton, Amherst, and Orange alongside the party’s candidate for governor, Maura Healey.
It’s a great opportunity for DiZoglio to ride the coattails of Healey, the state’s attorney general, and gain exposure in a part of the state unfamiliar with a senator from Methuen.
DiZoglio’s rival, Anthony Amore, doesn’t have a similar campaign swing planned, largely because he doesn’t have the time. He has to juggle his campaign efforts while working his regular job as director of security at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.
It’s a day-to-day challenge for Amore. CommonWealth called his campaign looking for a comment on a separate issue on Tuesday and was told Amore would call back at around 6 p.m. – after he gets off work.
Amore said he used vacation time to attend the endorsement press conference.
Mark Steffen, a campaign aide to Amore, said he’s proud to be working for someone juggling a campaign and a full-time job. “He lives with his partner and her 9-year-old daughter in Winchester and contributes financially to their home,” Steffen said in an email. “In addition to that, he’s been paying tuition bills for one of his daughters to attend school. Sometimes we’ll lighten his campaign schedule to give him a Saturday to spend time with her. Just recently he spent a Saturday watching his daughter perform in the marching band at a UMass Amherst football game. If we need to do campaign-related events during the work day, he always uses vacation time, which is limited. So we have to be judicious about the use of that time.”
Most of the Democratic candidates running for statewide office don’t face a similar time crunch because they are elected officials. No one docks their pay when they are out campaigning for another office.
DiZoglio is a state senator; Healey is the attorney general; and Healey’s lieutenant governor running mate, Kim Driscoll, is the mayor of Salem. William Galvin and Deborah Goldberg are incumbents — Galvin is the secretary of the Commonwealth and Goldberg is the state treasurer.
The lone Democrat running for statewide office who doesn’t currently have a day job is Andrea Campbell, who is campaigning for attorney general.
There has been talk from time to time about trying to make it easier financially for candidates to run for office. Candidates have pressed for the ability to use campaign funds to pay for childcare or to pay themselves a small salary. Bills to allow the use of campaign funds to pay for child care were filed in the current legislative session but did not pass.
Brookline activist Jesse Mermell, who narrowly lost a Democratic primary bid for Congress in 2020, said the challenges candidates face are real. “Who can afford to be without income for nearly a year to run for office?” she asked in a post-campaign essay. “How many people whose talent and lived experiences would add incredible value to the political process are boxed in at the consideration phase of a campaign because, like most Americans, they have rent to pay, loans to cover, and mouths to feed? Too many.”
Healey, Diehl debate: Democrat Maura Healey and Republican Geoff Diehl squared off in their first debate, and a lot of the talk centered around Donald Trump and Joe Biden. Healey slammed Diehl for trying to bring Trumpism to Massachusetts and Diehl suggested Healey is following the same playbook as Biden, which he said has led to soaring inflation, higher mortgage rates, and skyrocketing energy costs.
– Healey stressed repeatedly that she wants to make Massachusetts more affordable by cutting taxes, expanding and improving transportation services, and building more housing. She offered few details on how she would accomplish those goals, but suggested her plan to cut taxes centers around efforts by Gov. Charlie Baker to return later this fall $3 billion in excess tax collections and his bid to win passage of an economic development bill that contains about $500 million in permanent tax cuts.
– Diehl claimed Healey actually wants to raise taxes by backing Question 1, which would impose a 4 percent surtax on income over $1 million (Diehl said the question will prompt an exodus of wealthy people and their capital from the state) and resurrecting Baker’s Transportation Climate Initiative, which would assess fees on automobile fuels sold at the wholesale level and use that money to combat climate change. Read more.
Telehealth cost neutral: Data from 2020 indicates telehealth is largely cost neutral for the Massachusetts health care system. The data indicate telehealth services don’t add costs but don’t reduce them, either. The data also show that telehealth is particularly popular for mental health services, even after the pandemic has receded. Read more.
Tax cap change proposed: A handful of progressives are pushing a change in the tax cap law to limit how much money the state’s wealthiest taxpayers would get back as part of the $3 billion refund effort. Read more.
First pardons: Gov. Charlie Baker handed out the first pardons of his two terms in office. Assuming his decision is ratified by the Governor’s Council, four men convicted on decades-old charges will have their records erased as if they never happened. Read more.
FROM AROUND THE WEB
Boston residents and city officials are decrying the knife attack in Franklin Park on Jean McGuire, the 91-year-old retired founder of the Metco program and the first Black woman elected to the Boston School Committee. (Boston Globe)
The Worcester City Council rejects a request by UMass Medical School to change the name of Plantation Street. (Telegram & Gazette)
New Bedford seeks to build an advanced manufacturing campus, but finds no developers interested in taking on the project. (Standard-Times)
The Chicopee School Committee considers buying the MassMutual Learning and Conference Center to house administrative offices as well as other innovative uses, like a teen center or classroom for adult learning. (MassLive)
A new study is raising more concerns about the prevalence of long COVID. (Washington Post)
Staff at Family Health Center in Worcester are resigning, painting a bleak picture of the health center’s operations after layoffs and furloughs. (MassLive)
The families of eight victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting were awarded nearly $1 billion in damages in their lawsuit against Infowars honcho Alex Jones, who spent years deriding the massacre as a “hoax.” (New York Times)
Los Angeles City Councilor Nury Martinez resigns in the wake of racist remarks. (New York Times)
The Globe’s James Pindell gives Republican Geoff Diehl a D and Democrat Maura Healey an A for their performances in Wednesday’s night’s gubernatorial debate.
Diehl ramps up his fundraising in the final weeks of the campaign. (Eagle-Tribune)
Republican congressional candidate Dean Tran appeals a federal judge’s dismissal of his lawsuit challenging Attorney General Maura Healey’s prosecution of him for theft charges. (Telegram & Gazette)
Recidivism rates for offenders released from the Bristol County House of Correction are becoming an issue in the race between incumbent Sheriff Thomas Hodgson and challenger Paul Heroux, but concrete data on recidivism are elusive, and it’s not even clear that such rates are good measure of the job being done by the sheriff in charge of the facility. (New Bedford Light)
Adam Reilly at GBH calls the race for auditor between Democrat Diana DiZoglio and Republican Anthony Amore the most interesting in the state.
Unionized graduate students at Clark University in Worcester unanimously ratify a new contract with the school. (GBH)
A UMass Amherst alumni, Jason Fettig, is the director of the “President’s Own” US Marine Band. (MassLive)
Use of a state program that collects old mercury thermostats to keep them out of landfills plummeted last year. (Salem News)MEDIA
Gannett CEO Mike Reed outlines new austerity measures, including mandatory leaves and “voluntary severance,” in a memo to employees. Here’s more from Dan Kennedy at Media Nation.