Monday, November 05, 2007

Endorsement: John Connolly

I figured I would take a litte more space to explain why I am voting for John Connolly. I met John two years ago when he first ran for the at-large City Council seat. I was actually volunteering for Mayor Menino at the time, holding a sign for him outside a Mayoral debate at WGBH. John Connolly was there shaking hands. I remember being overwhelmed by his energy.

At the election a few weeks later, he got my vote, along with Patricia White and Michael Flaherty. I was shocked he did not win, simply because I saw, first-hand, how hard he was campaigning.

Connolly has not lost a step in the two years since that election. He wants to make a difference, and frankly, I think it's time for a little change on the City Council (even with Sam Yoon a relative newcomer). But his energy is not why I am voting for him. There are two reasons why.

First, John understands that there are a lot of people like me who want to live in Boston for the long term but are freaked out by the cost of owning a home here. That's not even mentioning the cost of raising a child here. Since I first moved here in 1994 to go to BU, it was pretty much taken for granted that you have fun in your 20's in the city, and then get married and move to the suburbs. Now that I have lived here for a bit, and want to stay, I cannot simply accept that reality.

Second (and this point isn't often made, but it's important), John Connolly understands the limitations of the City Council. Let's face it-- The City Council cannot do much. But there are certain areas where the Council can have an impact. Connolly is smart about the change he wants to make; his platform is not overly ambitious, but it's laser-like in its focus. I like that.

No question that John Connolly really wants this. I received two separate auto calls from him tonight... In the first, he simply restates his credentials. In the second, he seeks to deflect the criticism related to mailer-gate.

Speaking of mailer-gate, here's my two cents on that. For those of you not in Boston, Connolly sent two separate mailers attacking a City Councilor, Stephen Murphy, this weekend. The problem is, he didn't say the mailers came from him. I will stop there. The tactic was wrong. While it will not cost Connolly my vote, it was wrong. I can't believe he expected that no one would find out. I am in complete disbelief.

That being said, Connolly deserves a shot. And while I could vote for three other candidates to fill the at-large City Council seats, Connolly will get my only vote.

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