Saturday, January 16, 2010

My Choice is Martha Coakley

It's probably not a surprise to regular readers that I am voting for Martha Coakley on Tuesday to be the next U.S. Senator from Massachusetts. Over the past week, the temperature in the race has risen many degrees. One cannot watch a local news program without encountering numerous ads for Coakley and her opponent.

I had originally not planned to write this post; but given how the race as turned out, I feel compelled to state my reasons for supporting the Attorney General, despite the fact that I did not vote for her in the Democratic primary last month.

1) Massachusetts universal health care is not enough. While we enjoy nearly universal health-care coverage in Massachusetts, we suffer from industry wide problems, including the uncontrollable rise in health-care costs. The most attractive provisions of the health-care bills in Congress protect all of us from loss of insurance if we get sick, and they forbid insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions. Those provisions are not a part of the Massachusetts heath care overhaul. A vote against Martha Coakley is a vote against health-care reform so desperately needed.

2) Martha Coakley agrees with many of my international priorities. Certainly there are still those in Afghanistan that mean us harm, but the fight against terrorism is not as black-and-white as simply targeting countries or regions. Coakley believes that the right answer isn't always to send in troops. The right answer is to target our efforts based on good intelligence and recognize that this effort is truly global in nature.

3) Martha Coakley is tough. As Attorney General she's represented Massachusetts, returned money to the state's taxpayers, and remained committed to her core values. This is not a party sock puppet. Martha Coakley will stand up for what she believes in.

Tuesday's election is serious. Many of my fellow Massachusetts residents are upset. But they should not let that anger cloud their judgement about what's best for the state. And what's best is to make Martha Coakley our next U.S. Senator.

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