Thursday, December 07, 2006

Life in Public Office

I'm beginning to feel a little bad for Deval already - meetings with Boston-based businesses and renting space through a firm (yet paying for that space) are suddenly "ethical" questions for Deval Patrick. Yet, Republicans tried to complain when he met with legislative leadership! By saying "Spokesmen for the firms, and for Patrick, insist that the arrangements are ethical and do not indicate the governor-elect is backing away from his well crafted image as an outsider," the media has misconstrued what the progressive and many other voters want out of Deval Patrick.

Yes, we want someone who's independent, but that doesn't mean we suddenly want someone who shuns the state legislature - like Republicans for the past 16 years have done. That's what we rallied against. We neither want Deval to ignore the legislature nor the business community: his status as an "outsider" is true, because he was an outsider to the Massachusetts establishment, not because he wasn't in contact with businesses (in fact, he came from the business community!). In four years, he won't be an "outsider," but that has nothing to do with whether or not he'll be elected or successful. Whether or not he remains independent (and I suspect he will!) will likely determine his success and mass popularity.

Deval's going to have to deal with these kinds of stories for the next four years. Heck, even I poked him yesterday over his 1.6 million dollar inaugural ball bash. Sometimes the stories will be fair, even Deval admits he'll make mistakes. However, most of these stories are going to be digging up dirt that's not really there - such as creating ethical problems where none exist. Ryan's Take will continue to keep track of both the media and Deval Patrick in the years to come so neither the Globe nor our elected officials pull one on us. In the meantime, my sympathy to the Patricks!

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