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  • September 28, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein

    Via email, "Tyler" asks:

    How do you think the first-term Republican State Reps elected in Worcester County will do for re-election this year? Do you think any will be voted out?

    This is a great question, which I'd love to hear some central-Massachusetts readers chime in on.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but there are four of them who face Democratic challengers: Richard Bastien in the 2nd (Jonathan Zlotnik, Dem); Peter Durant in the 6th (Kathleen Walker, Dem); Kevin Kuros in the 8th (Robert DuBois, Dem); and Ryan Fattman in the 18th (Donald Bourque, Dem).

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  • July 27, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein

    "John" asks:

    Ernie Boch III at blue mass group thinks Reps Moran and Michlewitz are destined to stay players in the House of Reps. Of course Hart is climbing...Do you think any of the newer Boston reps/senators are likely to climb with them? Collins, Holmes, Coppinger, Henriquez in the House? Brownsberger/Chang-Diaz in the Senate?

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  • May 18, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein

    "Beacon Hill Gossip," a real troublemaker, asks:

    Of Beacon Hills current crop of Legislators, which do you think have either overstayed their welcome, hit the glass ceiling, or are just plain ineffective, and should take a hint and look for a new career?

    Well, let's start with my stated opinion -- and I'm serious about this -- that we should shut down the house of representatives and send them all home.

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  • May 18, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein

    Turning from the high-profile to the obscure, "EliasNugator" asks:

    Who is the "front runner" in the 24th Middlesex Democratic Primary for State Rep? How does that General Election shape up?

    That's the open seat in Arlington/Belmont/Cambridge, previously held by William Brownsberger, who won a special election to become state senator.

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  • March 23, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein

    Enjoying Ask Me Anything Day? Keep the questions coming! Via email, "Bill in Plymouth" asks:

    Do you think the Mass. GOP will be able increase it's foothold in the House in 2012, and which, if any, incumbents of either party do you see in danger of being ousted?
    No. We're talking about the state house of representatives, right? (Must be; the MassGOP has no foothold in the US House.

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  • March 23, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein

    It's gonna be a great Ask Me Anything Day; lots of questions piling up already! First up is "RMC," who asks:

    Have you had the chance to look at S661 which is the MA proposed Stand Your Ground legislation that they have in FL in light of the Trayvon Martin situation? How fast are the R's and the rural legislators going to run away from this bill? Or will GOAL hold their feet to the fire?

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  • February 03, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein
    On Twitter, "Brad Marston" asks:
    What's your over/under on number of Massachusetts Democrats to be indicted in Probation Dept. scandal?

    And relatedly, "MAGal" asks:

    I'm a proud MA Democrat in many respects, but I get really embarrassed by all the corruption in state government (a la the McLaughlin/Murray story).

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  • February 03, 2012
    By David S. Bernstein

    Sure, everyone is talking about the Presidential race, or Liz vs Scotto, but the cool kids have their eye on the Massachusetts state legislature!

    "Guest" asks:

    Do you think Comrade Eldridge will be able to successfully recruit a band of idiots to run against his state Senate colleagues, who he deems as "not progressive enough?"

    Read More

  • November 16, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    The Globe beat me to it, but I'm just now getting the chance to blast the state legislature for trying to increase the amount of gaming income diverted to purses at horse tracks. Both houses passed the new version of the bill, containing that change, yesterday. (As I write, there is word that they may try to back up and rework this provision.

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  • July 21, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    This is the first non-election year in which Massachusetts state legislators must report campaign finances in mid-year, under new reporting rules passed in 2009. That still keeps the contributions and expenditures hidden during the budget process, but reveals them pretty shortly after, so that's a start. Plus, it gives dorks like me a lot of numbers to play with during the dog days of summer.

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  • July 13, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    A joint statement just came from senate president Therese Murray and house speaker Bob DeLeo, saying that expanded gaming legislation will not be debated in the legislature until after Labor Day.

    That's a setback for DeLeo, who had been publicly pushing to debate gaming in July, once the budget was done. On the other hand, maybe this could be read as a sign that Murray does expect to move on gaming this fall, which would be something.

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  • July 01, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    Let's start Ask Me Anything Day off with "Elias Nugator," who asks:

    The State House GOP caucus has proposed some splashy new ethics rules. Realistically, do these proposals have any change of being debated let alone becoming the rules of said chamber?

    It sure doesn't seem like it, but we'll see. Clearly, Speaker Bob DeLeo wants to be seen as a serious reformer, as shown in the aggressive patronage-ethics bill the house passed earlier this year (which the senate has shown no appetite for).

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  • June 24, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    Yes, I know, it's all Whitey all the time -- believe me, I'm enjoying the spectacle -- but let's remember that there's another sordid tale going on: the inability of the Massachusetts state legislature to pass a budget.

    The fiscal year ends in six days, on Thursday June 30. So, to have money in the checkbook a week from today, a budget's got to be signed.

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  • June 22, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    In this week's issue of the Boston Phoenix -- in print tomorrow, online now -- I offer a simple, one-step solution to the problems that have plagued the Massachusetts House of Representatives: abolish it.

    That's right, we should shut down the House and go with a unicameral legislature.

    This is not intended as merely an intellectual exercise.

    Read More

  • June 17, 2011
    By David S. Bernstein

    People don't usually get caught the first time they send crotch shots to women over the Internet; when they do get caught, the odds are very good there's a history of it. Same goes with public corruption.

    An awful lot of folks in Massachusetts, especially Democratic lawmakers, and most especially the ones who were in the house of representatives with Sal DiMasi, seem to be treating the former Speaker's conviction for fraud and corruption as an isolated incident.

    Read More

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