Strange bedfellows

This just in: Boston city councilor Steve Murphy has endorsed Deval Patrick for governor.

Will this help Patrick? Maybe a little, if it convinces some white centrist Democrats that he (Patrick) isn't just a lefty candidate. But I see it being most helpful to Murphy when he runs for re-election in 2007.

Here's the release the Patrick camp just put out:

BOSTON —Friday, June 23, 2006—Boston City Councilor Stephen Murphy this week endorsed Deval Patrick, citing Patrick’s vision for leading the state. Murphy joins more than 70 state and local officials who are supporting Patrick’s gubernatorial campaign, showing continued momentum for Patrick’s candidacy following his decisive victory at the Democratic State Convention earlier this month.

“In my view, Deval Patrick is the best choice— really, the only choice for Democrats this year,” said Murphy. “He is running a grassroots campaign about the issues people care about and his candor and leadership are really connecting with people in Boston and across the state.”

Last fall, Patrick began unveiling elements of his plan for Moving Massachusetts Forward. To date, he has released plans for economic development, education, health care, energy and the environment, partnering with local cities and towns and streamlining state government. In the later plan, Patrick identified $735 million that can be cut from state government annually. His strategies include limiting legislative earmarks, enforcing wage and hour laws, improving detection of Medicaid fraud and increasing budgetary transparency.

In 2005, former US Labor Secretaries Robert Reich and Alexis Herman endorsed Patrick in a Boston Globe Op-Ed column. In that piece they talked about Patrick’s ability to bring different parties to the table to get things done. U.S. Congressmen Jim McGovern, Michael Capuano, Barney Frank, John Tierney and John Olver have also announced their support for Patrick.

“I am honored and excited to have the endorsement of Councilor Murphy,” Patrick said. “He shares my determination to base this campaign on the people of the Commonwealth and the issues they care about.”

Patrick’s grassroots campaign has over 5,000 volunteers and has raised more than $3.7 million, including more than $700,000 in donations raised through the campaign's website, www.devalpatrick.com. Each day, volunteers fill the campaign’s headquarters in Charlestown.

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