Healey and Baker one-on-one?

They’ve enjoyed some friendly competition harkening to earlier days, two former Harvard hoopsters playfully trying out old moves.

But could Charlie Baker and Maura Healey be heading toward a showdown on the political parquet? Healey, the first-term attorney general, has sworn off interest in running for governor. But she has become increasingly outspoken on a range of issues outside the daily duties of her office, and her erstwhile shoot-around pal has been on the receiving end of some of her sharpest elbows.

The Boston Herald’s Hillary Chabot says it’s time for Healey to “change up her game plan” and make a run at Baker in 2018. The paper takes a poke at her recent moves with a headline declaring, “AG’s talk cheap if she dodges Charlie Baker.”

Healey called on Baker and the state party to denounce a mailer sent by the Marlborough Republican City Committee that targeted a Democratic state rep over his vote for transgender rights legislation that Baker signed.

But the real source of tension between the two pols centers on the presidential election result. Healey has been ripping Donald Trump at every turn. She has decried his pick of Sen. Jeff Sessions for attorney general, and controversial former Breitbart News executive Steve Bannon as chief White House strategist.

Baker called the Bannon pick “a concern to me,” but said he would wait to judge the administration as a whole. Healey quickly ripped Baker for his wait-and-see stance.

“It’s concerning for me to see the governor, who sat out this election, now take a wait-and-see approach on something like an appointment of Steve Bannon,” Healey said. “For me, Bannon isn’t a wait-and-see situation. He is a white supremacist now named to a top White House position to advise the president-elect and that is something that needs to be denounced and rejected.”

Whether Healey is signaling a potential interest in challenging Baker in two years is not clear. What is clear is that while Baker may have blanked his presidential ballot, one outcome would have been far easier for his political future — and it doesn’t involve a President Trump.

Because of his first-GOP-governor-in-the-nation disavowal of Trump’s candidacy, Baker may be the notoriously vindictive president-elect’s least favorite Republican governor. By the same token, he could well have become Hillary Clinton’s favorite Republican state leader, a go-to guy for showcasing her pragmatic, bipartisan bona fides.

The election of the bombastic billionaire looks like one giant headache for Baker, guaranteeing an endless stream of questions about his views on the latest incendiary Trump pronouncement or tweet. Baker has no interest in picking fights with the incoming president and leader of his party, but he also has to worry about being seen as too accommodating of controversial Trump policies or personnel picks.

Whether it’s looking to his left or right, Baker’s hope now is to somehow stay out of foul trouble.

MICHAEL JONAS

 

 

BEACON HILL

A fund that solicited private donations spent $300,000 in all for events related to Deval Patrick’s farewell ceremony upon leaving the governor’s office and other tributes to his tenure. (Boston Herald)

As of Friday, Attorney General Maura Healey’s hate crime hotline had received 300 calls. (Boston Globe) Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse is anonymously targeted a second time for being gay. (MassLive)

MUNICIPAL MATTERS

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said he and Gov. Charlie Baker are “back together” after their bromance was tested by their split over the charter ballot question and said Washington pols could take a lesson from the pair on how to work together. (Keller@ Large)

The Sunday Globe reported that two labor leaders who served on Boston’s Zoning Board of Appeal testified before a federal grand jury under immunity and that the federal probe of possible union strong-arming of local government is nearing a conclusion. The Herald stirs the pot with comments from former state inspector general Greg Sullivan that new revelations in the Globe story about comments by Mayor Marty Walsh captured on a wiretap when he was a labor official and state lawmaker suggest he is a focus of the probe. Walsh says there’s nothing to it all and that the Globe has “rewritten the same story seven times.”

The Herald News takes a look at the pension system through the eyes of three high-ranking Fall River officials.

Boston will begin testing driverless cars by the end of the year. (Boston Globe)

WASHINGTON/NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL

Vice President-elect Mike Pence went to the theater to see the Broadway hit “Hamilton” over the weekend and got a lecture from the cast on diversity, a highly unusual rebuke that brought a demand for an apology from President-elect Donald Trump and triggered a feverish debate about freedom of speech. (New York Times) Unrepentant “Hamilton” fanboy Robert Pondiscio offers a thoughtful take suggesting the well-intentioned cast would have done better to let their art speak for itself. (NY Daily News)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren says she’s ready to go to battle to preserve the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau she helped launch. (Boston Globe)

Cannabis supporters are worried the selection of Jeff Sessions, a virulent opponent of marijuana use, as attorney general could unravel legalization efforts at state levels. (U.S. News & World Report)

Melania Trump and 10-year-old son Barron will not move to the White House until the end of the school year. (New York Times)

BUSINESS/ECONOMY

Developers of a pair of Trump-branded apartment buildings in India met with Donald Trump last week in the midst of his transition process and look to cash in on their partnership with the president-elect. (New York Times)

Neighbors, including the local Major League Baseball franchise, are not happy about a 340-foot tower proposed for Boston’s Fenway neighborhood. (Boston Globe)

MassLive profiles the Park Street Lofts in Springfield, where rents start at $1,099 a month and include heat, hot water, cable, and internet.

Joshua Kushner, younger brother of Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, is a Democrat who did not vote for the president-elect and whose health care startup is relying on the Affordable Care Act that Trump has vilified and vow to repeal. (STAT)

Commercial fishermen will likely get an increase in the catch quota next year for the increasingly popular monkfish, a bottom-dwelling species in demand in restaurants and seafood markets. (Associated Press)

EDUCATION

We’ve heard about sanctuary cities, but now college students are pushing sanctuary campuses. (CommonWealth)

Andover won its third consecutive state championship in swimming, and its 14th championship in the last 18 seasons. (Eagle-Tribune)

HEALTH/HEALTH CARE

Health care providers in Massachusetts carried out a procedure on the wrong patient at least 14 times since 2011. (Boston Globe)

ENERGY/ENVIRONMENT

Against the grain of a dire warnings about the damage that could be done by Trump climate policy, Jeffrey Sachs pens a more optimistic take, saying the US is already well on the way to a low-carbon energy future. (Boston Globe)

Activists are pressing Gov. Charlie Baker to appoint an independent nuclear expert to join the inspection of the troubled Pilgrim power plant in Plymouth. (Cape Cod Times)

A federal judge has put a hold on a lawsuit by a Wellfleet kitesurfer against the National Park Service while the federal agency reworks its ban on the sport at the Cape Cod National Seashore. (Cape Cod Times)

Attorney General Maura Healey could be called to give a deposition next month in a Texas courtroom in connection with her probe of ExxonMobil and its claims concerning climate change. (Boston Herald)

Natick officials are eyeing a plan to extend an electricity aggregation program for six months to deliver lower prices to town residents than Eversource. (MetroWest Daily News)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE/COURTS

Gloribel Orengo, 44, was beaten to death by a group of women after visiting a friend in Lowell. Her 28-year-old son, who has Down syndrome, told her he loved her as she died. (Lowell Sun)

Police are voicing increasing concerns about how they’ll deal with marijuana-impaired driving in the era of legal pot, since there is no Breathalyzer equivalent with which to test drivers. (Boston Globe) A University of Massachusetts Boston psychology professor says he’s developed an app that could fill the missing gap. (Boston Globe)

MEDIA

News organizations in Philadelphia are joining together to examine recidivism and what can be done about it. (Nieman Journalism Lab)

The New York Times did a detailed study on one bogus election-related story to follow the path and see how fake news threads go viral.

Boston Globe editor Brian McGrory sent out a post-election memo to the troops hailing the paper’s coverage of the election but warned reporters and editors to “use your very sizable brains” when donating to activist causes and be judicious on social media. (Media Nation)

Bloomberg Businessweek may be nearing the end. (Poynter)