Manic Monday Markup 6/9/14…
The State of Things:
We begin today in Springfield where Gov. Deval Patrick announced and swore in his interim pick for Hampden County District Attorney. Patrick picked Jim Orenstein, a longtime deputy DA in the office as Mastroianni, freshly confirmed and sworn in as a federal judge, looked on. Orenstein will served until next January when the next district attorney, all but certain to be chosen in September’s Democratic primary, will take office. Four Democrats are running for the seat and no Republicans or independents.
…And the World:
In Israel, in the glare of the state’s presidential election (the incumbent, Shimon Peres, may only serve one term and the Knesset chooses the ceremonial Head of State), members of Prime Minister Benjamine Netanyahu’s government are criticising Bibi. Finance Minister Yair Lapid challenged Netanyahu to present his peace plan and blamed the premier for the deterioration of relations with the US. Lapid alos threatened to bring down the government if West Bank settlements were annexed. Though Netanyahu seemed unfazed by the criticism. Justice Minister Tzipi Livni had similar words for the premier and said, despite its political incorrectness, that the settlements, particularly the further flung ones in the Palestinian territory, were a security burden. Both Lapid and Livni are members of Netanyahu’s coalition government of different parties than the premier.
A Russian court gave life sentences to five men found guilty the murder of a journalist, Anna Politkovskaya. Although the people who ordered the hit remain unknown. Politkovskaya was a well-known critic of the Kremlin.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott is looking to form a right-wing bloc against action on global warming. Among the people on his list of would-be recruits is British Prime Minister David Cameron…who support actions on globe warming. Nice start, Tony.
In a testament to poor public relations, a USA Today poll found President Obama’s fumbled the Bowe Bergdahl exchange. However, a majority, 56%, say following through on the credo to bring back troops left on the battlefield at any cost. Oddly, Vets seems to be particularly sour on the exchange. Um, whether he endangered his comrades or not, the preferred option is to risk his life?
Virginia Republicans appear to have outmaneuvered Democrats by all, but bribing a Democratic state senator to resign, throwing control of the chamber to Republicans. It weakens Democrats and Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe’s push to expand Medicaid to 400,000 Virginians. McAuliffe may resort to executive action. Meanwhile, the district of the Dem senator who resigned, is probably among those most in need.
Obama signed an executive order on student loans today.
On that note, The New York Times notes how a state border can be the difference between having health insurance and not having it.
The Controller’s race in California remains unsettled. Democrats remain on edge that they could get shut out of the general election under the top-two primary they state instituted a few years ago.
Oh look, more questions about Chris Christie’s use of the Port Authority.
The State of Things (cont’d):
Warren Tolman secured a king’s ransom of endorsements on a visit to Springfield today, not unlike a similar sweep in Greater Worcester. Highlights are the city’s senators and Sheriff Michael Ashe.
David Bernstein analyzes some statewide polls, particularly their leads Martha Coakley has in the race.
In case you missed it, interim School Committee member Michelle Grodsky won the right to finish out the term she had been temporarily filling.
Too late fellas. Senator Jim Welch says the push to restore Quinn Bill funding is not likely to bear fruit this late in the budget process. Welch has a point. Although the budget has not been passed, both the House and Senate have passed their versions and restoring the state’s share would probably be a hefty item to sneak in conference committee. Not impossible, but pretty close.
New Westside mayor Edward Sullivan got something of a nod of support after the Town Council let his budget cross their desks unscathed.
Judgment cometh. The Gaming Commission will be in Springfield for some final hearings before it rules this week on whether (as expected) MGM, as the only competitor left, will really get a gaming license.
Illegal nightclubs in the South End? Apparently city officials are on it.
Not going to the Democratic convention in Worcester? Let Arise for Social Justice occupy your Saturday with its annual meeting.
Okay, we’re REALLY late with the Markup today and there is some pretty heavy stuff (as there usually is) so today we’re having a little fun. You know how much the Dot loves “Mahty” and apparently he loves it back because he declared last weekend Gin Dumcius Weekend after The Dorchester Reporter’s former scribe. Really? No, but wouldn’t that be a great way for Mayor Marty Walsh to get the press on your side? Today we award this week’s tweet prize to Bill Forry, who used to be Dumcius’ boss, for the clever way to recognize a colleauge. The reporter’s birthday was over the weekend, and the first in a bit that was not at The Reporter. Dumcius has moved over to the State House News, but the real question is not is this a joke, but now that it is out there, why hasn’t Mahty made it happen. No more plausible deniability your honor!
— Bill Forry (@BillForry) June 9, 2014