Well here it is! The Boston Globe has endorsed Republican Richard Tisei for Congress.
Tisei's mix of libertarianism and fiscal conservatism makes an excellent blueprint for New England Republicans. Even as the national Republican Party veered to the right during Tisei's years on Beacon Hill, he avoided hot-button social issues and instead staked out a common-sense, reform-oriented direction for the Senate GOP caucus. That approach eventually yielded results; Tisei and other legislative Republicans were pushing nuts-and-bolts pension reforms, for instance, well before the Legislature as a whole was willing to implement similar ideas.
The kind of bipartisanship that Tisei practiced on Beacon Hill is increasingly difficult in Washington. And to be sure, Tisei's stances on some issues may be too conservative for some voters. He promises, for example, to work for the repeal of Obamacare. (Never mind that he voted for the Romneycare that inspired it.) But Tisei, unlike others in his party, isn't in denial about problems with the current health care system, and he's amenable to compromise. He refused to sign Grover Norquist's no-new-taxes pledge. The pro-Tierney ads and mailers that tie Tisei to GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan's harsh, unworkable budget plan are based on comments taken mostly out of context.
Tierney's evasions are too much even for the Boston Globe prompting the newspaper to move from its default position of endorsing Democrats.
Richard Tisei is running a great campaign. He remains a class act.
(We've been saying this for a while. - promoted by Rob "EaBo Clipper" Eno)
In an extensive examination of the facts concerning Rep. John Tierney (D- Off Shore) and his connection to illegal gambling, the Boston Globe casts serious doubt on the congressman's assertion that he had no reason to suspect illegal activity.
But a Boston Globe review of court records and other publicly available information shows that John Tierney had ample reason to be wary of his brothers-in-law during his 15 years of marriage to their sister and many opportunities over the last decade to learn that their Antigua-based gambling business was illegally targeting American gamblers.
In fact, John Tierney had reason to be suspicious from the day he married Patrice. At that point, Bob Eremian had fled to Antigua to escape federal prosecution for illegal sports book-making, and had recruited one of Patrice's children, John Chew, to work with him. After a lengthy federal investigation, Bob Eremian pleaded guilty to tax evasion in the gambling case in 2002.
Most damning is the account of Tierney's vote in 2006 against a law to make it easier for prosecutors to enforce laws like the one which eventually led to the prosecution of his brother-in-law. That is the same brother-in-law who paid Tierney's wife $20,000 a year in "appreciation" for what she had done to help the family.
John Tierney is holding a tell-all press conference at 2 PM the day before the Fourth of July to talk about his family's gambling ring. The timing couldn't have been better for this news dump. The Richard Tisei campaign has put together an extensive dossier for the press ahead of this news conference. You can see it, in its entirety, below.
WHEN COULD JOHN TIERNEY HAVE KNOWN? PUBLISHED NEWS REPORTS INDICATE A SERIOUS LACK OF CANDOR (Lynnfield, MA) -- For the past several days, Congressman John Tierney has insisted that he knew nothing of his family's illegal gambling business until the government presented the most recent case against one of his two brother-in-laws in November 2011. Following are news articles dating back through the 1980s which reveal that the Congressman had to have known or suspected that something was rotten in Antigua - and that his wife was being paid directly from the illegal gambling empire. What follows is an extensive group of independent news clippings through the past decades:
Massachusetts, long known to be soft on criminals has a new "hanging" judge in the Honorable William Young. He sentenced Patrice Tierney to 30 days of hard time after she plead guilty to aiding and abetting her fugitive brother in filing false tax returns.
My first thought was to give Kudos to the judge for imposing a stiffer sentence than prosecuters had negotiated with Mrs. Tierney; they weren't seeking any jail time on charges that would send the non-politcally connected away for six months. The second thought was that someone was lying back in October when the agreement was reached. From my hometown paper, the Newburyport Daily News:
Also, for the first time yesterday, prosecutors acknowledged that she did receive some benefits from her fugitive brother, Robert Eremian, including payments of $20,000 to $30,000 a year as a "salary," $250 a month to make payments on a Volkswagen Beetle and a cell phone, for her help in managing his finances in the United States while he allegedly ran an illegal offshore gambling operation in Antigua.
Back in October after the plea agreement was reached and in the midst of his successful re-election campaign Rep. Tierney told the Salem Evening News:
Tierney also said that:
He and his wife never benefitted from Eremian's money.
"I have not made a dime from my brother-in-law," he said. "It's a non-issue."
Now, either Patrice Tierney lied to the prosecuters in October about the nature of the payments she received from her brother,hence the 30 day sentence tack on or Rep. Tierney lied to the editors of the Salem Evening News and the voters of his district.
Before Patrice follows the footsteps of Al Capone to prison on tax charges I ask RMG to pick the liar.
The wife of US Representative John F. Tierney is poised to plead guilty tomorrow to federal tax charges for managing a bank account that her brother allegedly used to deposit millions of dollars in illegal gambling profits he raked in from an offshore sports betting operation based in Antigua.
Federal prosecutors filed documents that were unsealed today in US District Court in Boston charging Patrice Tierney, 59, who is married to the Salem Democrat, with four counts of aiding and abetting the filing of false tax returns by her brother, Robert Eremian, of St. John's Antigua.
Let's see John Kerry builds a yacht overseas ignoring and evading American craftsmanship and taxes while Mrs. Tierney launders funds for her gambling offshore brother. All this while Democrats like Tierney rail against tax cuts. Hypocrisy writ large!
Personally, I'm not opposed to some kind of legalized gambling in Massachusetts and would actually welcome a sports book. I don't think it a very good kind of economic development, but I feel that people should have a right to do what they want with their own money.
However, I certainly don't think that the Speaker of the House has a special right to just hand what is essentially a license to print money to the 4 racetracks in the state (the biggest one, Suffolk Downs, not coincidentally is in his district) in the form of exclusive permission to operate slot machines with no public hearing, no open/competitive bidding process, and no due diligence on the entities that are slated to receive a very early and very large Christmas gift from Beacon Hill.
As Mr. Speaker has decreed that there is no need for an individual hearing on his multi-billion dollar proposal, the closest we can come to any kind of public examination is the hearing that was held Oct 29 of last year on the general topic gambling in MA, which can be viewed here online at the legislative tv website. This weekend I was up all night with my sick little one (who has a mean sinus infection) and I decided to avail myself of viewing what passes for a fair process in the broken system that is Beacon Hill (if you're a glutton for punishment or up with sick family I'd recommend watching it yourself). It was mostly drivel, bs in high supply and straight talk in short. But, I'm glad a persisted through to the bitter end because about 6 hours into the 6 hour 15 minute hearing one of the more unpolished union bosses at Suffolk Downs testified and actually had the temerity to tell truth about how much (subsidized) pay they expect for how little work, what they really think of their customers, and (most disturbing of all) the apparent plans to take by force of Eminent Domain other businesses land around Suffolk Downs...I may have been addled for lack of sleep but I thought it was a bombshell people had a right to be aware of. Here is a vid the highlights or, more accurately, lowlights:
I am posting the invitation below with the hope that some of you will join me in covering this event as citizen journalists. The pro gambling industry is also having an event the same day; I would like to get the word out about this press briefing as well as report on the content online in as many blogs and sites as possible.
Good evening all,
I hope you and your colleagues can join us in Boston for a media briefing and release of the Casino Math Workbook for Beacon Hill, Executive Summary on Tuesday, February 9, 2010 (details below).
Pro-predatory gambling representatives are holding a meeting on "responsible gambling" the same day, with the gambling industry and the requisite enablers as spokespersons. Finding methods to make legislators feel better about making bad decisions to legalize expanded predatory gambling, slots/casinos must be their misguided goal.
The NASW-MA and addiction specialists oppose expansion of predatory gambling in the Commonwealth. The solution for pathological gambling is abstinence and behavior change, not legalizing the electronic device (slots) that doubles rates of addiction.
Casino Facts (dot) Org and the Western MA Substance Abuse Providers Association (WMSAPA) recently signed onto USS Mass and they support the call for an independent cost-benefit analysis before legalizing any expanded predatory gambling. I have been asked to speak to WMSAPA at their March meeting. It will be a pleasure to see and work with some of my former colleagues on this issue of mutual concern.
Casino Math Class for Beacon Hill - Media Briefing
What: Media briefing hosted by United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts (www.uss-mass.org) to release an executive summary of a new report refuting the predatory, deceptive and flawed math behind the casino proposal.
Where: Statehouse Room B-1.
When: Tuesday, February 9, 2010 at 1 p.m.
Who: Kathleen Conley Norbut, M.Ed., LMHC, United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts (www.uss-mass.org)
Les Bernal, Stop Predatory Gambling (www.stoppredatorygambling.org)
Prof. Robert Goodman, Hampshire College, former director of the US Gambling Research Institute and author of "The Luck Business."
Laura Everett, associate director, Mass. Council of Churches
Contact: Kathleen Conley Norbut, M.Ed., LMHC
United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts (USS Mass)
PO Box 376
Palmer, MA 01069
As I've previously stated, I'm rather liberatarian on this issue. My main concern is local control and the principle of subsidiarity.
The fact that Gov. Patrick tried to balance a budget on hypothetical casinos was utterly insane!
Heck, I wouldn't mind seeing a 2014 or 2018 MassGOP State Convention here in New Bedford or elsewhere in the SouthCoast/Southeastern Mass thanks to a suitable casino provided auditorium. It's virtually impossible to even give passing consideration to holding a convention, or any other major event - political or not - here in in the region.
With gaming back atop the agenda this fall on Beacon Hill, there's a flurry of activity among casino developers, landowners, politicians, and lobbyists, all of whom are looking ahead to what is likely to be the most friendly climate to date toward bringing casinos, and possibly slot machines, to Massachusetts.
Top lawmakers have yet to set dates for hearings, and they are mum on what form the debate may take. But with the issue possibly surfacing as early as next month, and with a powerful opponent of expanded gambling, former House speaker Salvatore F. DiMasi, now out of office, the race is on.
If the estimated $100 billion now spent annually on gambling - mostly slot machines - went into consumer spending instead, economic models show it would generate more than $300 billion for the nation's slumping economy and create jobs and services, said Kindt, a professor of business and legal policy. He says Congress should also repeal more than $40 billion in tax write-offs for slot machine owners.
A ban also would save hundreds of billions in costs to society stemming from gambling addictions, bankruptcies and crime that studies show increases when casinos open, he said.
"No. 1, a ban would pump prime the economy," Kindt said. "No. 2, it would lower pressure on taxes because you wouldn't have as many new addicted gamblers, bankruptcies and crime. So you're eliminating substantial social costs, you're improving quality of life overall and as John F. Kennedy said, 'a rising tide lifts all boats.' "
A ban would not solve the lingering economic turmoil that has left the nation teetering on the brink of recession, said Kindt, who has studied gambling since Illinois first allowed riverboat casinos nearly two decades ago.
"But it's a step in the right direction and would halt the spread of gambling that is destabilizing world economies and financial markets," he said.
"It also would send good economic signals to less stable countries that they can't gamble their way to prosperity."
Casinos created tens of thousands of jobs, a flood of money for state coffers, and put New Jersey on the national map for vacation and gambling junkets. But they also created a sharper divide between the haves and have-nots. Before voters approved casino gambling in 1976, Atlantic City was a poor city struggling with crime, drugs and lack of jobs. Today it has the casinos, but the other problems persist.
"I feel sorry for the people that have been here all their lives and went through 1976, thinking there would be change," said Merceda Gooding, a 40-year-old Atlantic City resident. "It saddens me to see that. In 1976, they said they were going to do all this stuff to help the needs of the Atlantic City residents, and they've fallen short a lot. We don't even have a grocery store here."
Gooding is completing her college degree in business administration and human resources. She wants a white-collar job at a casino, but has found the work available to be much less attractive.
"I wouldn't have a problem getting a job at a casino as long as it's a maid job or washing the tables," she said.
Tom Carver, executive director of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, said casinos delivered on their economic promises, but were never supposed to be saviors.
"Casinos are not government," he said. "Casinos are not schools. Casinos are not anything other than (things that) provide jobs and public money, and they did that galore."
(I like casinos others don't. The Governor's plans seem off the mark. Thanks Lauren for joining the discussion. - promoted by EaBo Clipper)
My name is Laura* and I live in Malden. I'm not originally from Massachusetts but I love it here. And I'm proud of the amazing things that this Commonwealth has to offer. I was raised in New Jersey but the 'ancestral homeland' of Everett and my deep love of Dunkin Donuts, among other things, drew me here. I like my neighborhood. The people are nice, the parking is plentiful and it's a relatively easy commute to work. I do not want a casino in my neighborhood. I've been with groups of people of all political persuasions around the state as we have a much-needed conversation about how we fund the public structures- roads, schools, parks- that we all value. I've met people around the state that don't want a casino in their neighborhood either. If I don't want a casino in my neighborhood, why would I stick that on my neighbors in Middleborough, Palmer, New Bedford, Needham, Great Barrington, North Andover, Revere Wellesley, East Boston or anywhere else?
After the jump, an invitation and a video to make you proud.
Is this any way to promote a casino? MTA to Deval's rescue. They just love new revenue, even if its unrealized!
Patrick bets on teachers in three-casino push
Governor launching new offensive to get bill passed
Jan 17, 2008
By Ken Maguire THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
BOSTON- Gov. Deval L. Patrick said yesterday he's not locked into his plan on how to spend casino revenue, offering a position that education leaders say would help motivate teachers to fight for passage of the legislation.
The Democratic governor and labor union officials solidified their relationship yesterday, meeting in a Dorchester union hall to rally around the prospect of casinos that would create 20,000 permanent jobs and even more temporary construction jobs.
Patrick, whose administration is launching a new offensive to get the three-casino bill passed early this year, wants to divide what he estimates will be $400 million in annual revenue between property tax credits for homeowners and road and bridge repairs.
"I do want to make a plug here and now to allot some of those funds to public education because after all it is the system of public education that teaches the kids who become the workers that fuel the economy of this state," Anne Wass, president of the Massachusetts Teachers Association, told the governor during the union meeting.
Wass, whose organization represents 107,000 educators, later said teachers would be more inclined to lobby for the bill if education were one of the direct recipients of revenue.
"I expect all of that is going to be on the table," Patrick told reporters after the event. "There is broad support for the concept of three resort casinos and a lot of debate yet to come about how to dedicate those revenues but we ought to have that debate."
The MTA executive board has voted to support the measure because education would still benefit indirectly, Wass noted.
I'm pretty big on social justice issues, yet years ago as a self described liberal trying to explain to my peers that maybe their ideas could be more harmful then good their only response was that I was really a religious conservative. Eventually I took their advice and became one.
Two of my thoughts... on casinos and the break down of family in the inner city
By all accounts the Governor's plan to add Casino's will not show fruit for at least two years, maybe three. Don't get me wrong, there will be casino's in Massachusetts, just not as soon as Deval needs to close the revenue gap.
The Republican Leadership in the General Court should take the opportunity offered by expanded gambling and offer legislation to enact SportsBook betting via the already existing lottery terminal structure throughout the state. Oregon recently offered sportsbook betting but under pressure from the NCAA stopped the program(PDF). The limited sports gambling was revenue positive in that state.
Millions of dollars are bet each week in Massachusetts illegally. Let's make it legal and collect revenue off of it.
Senator Brown and Representative Jones are you listening?
I don't spend much time at Red Mass Group, but I do wander by every now and then. [...] I'm also struck by the fact that there isn't a single post over there about casinos, which is practically the only issue anyone else in the state is talking about. I mean, come on -- how can you seriously claim to be a blog that's remotely about MA politics without at least noting Deval's casino announcement? Is it because they think Deval did the right thing, but can't bear to say so in public? Sadly, that wouldn't surprise me. Some of them talk a good "bipartisan" game over here, but when they're with their own, the truth comes out, and it's not pretty.
What does everybody think? Is allowing casinos in Massachusetts a good thing? Is Gov. Patrick right to move forward with expanding gaming in Massachusetts? Are there any Deval-critics who think he did a good thing in this case?
Update: Bally's has made a new Massachusetts Commemorative Slot Machine after the jump