What's "Normal" in Politics? Nothing!

Don't ever say that "It's Politics as Usual." There is no usual.

In just the past few years, during my brief career in Boston, I've learned that politics is always changing.

Two Governors in a row quit. Bill Weld and Paul Cellucci.

Weld wanted to be Ambassador to Mexico, but Jessie Helms didn't cooperate, so Weld went to New York City to join a law firm, which he left to form a new business, and divorced his wife, wrote three books, and found a new girlfriend in the Big Apple. Former New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani just joined Weld in business at a private equity fund.

Giuliani doesn't need the work, apparently, as he gets $100,000 for giving a speech, gets more invitations than he can accept, and reportedly will earn $10-million this year.

In typically Weldian way, the former Governor said Giuliani is "the kind of guy I'd want by my side in the jungle...he has a rat-trap mind...he can cut red meat." Sounds like something Big Red would put in one of his books.

Governor Cellucci actually got an Ambassadorship, to Canada, which installed Jane Swift as Acting Governor. She promptly took a three month maternity leave to have twins. 

She couldn't keep most of the baby gifts people sent to her kids, thanks to ethics regulations which limited gifts to a $50 value.

After 9-11, Swift's popularity increased immensely, thanks to her swift, no pun intended, decisions to get things under control. But, her popularity didn't last.

So, Swift, in a surprise maneuver, and under considerable criticism for almost every move, said she wouldn't seek election and gave the title of

"Head of the Republicans" over to Mitt Romney, fresh back from his stint as head of the Olympics.

Mitt chose Kerry Murphy Healey, whose name no one could remember, over Swift's choice, Pat Guerrerro. So Pat bailed out of the race, leaving Murphy-Healey to face Jim Rappaport, who no Republican gubernatorial candidate chose as a running mate. Pundits said the Republicans didn't need two rich white guys on the ticket. So they got one rich white guy and one rich white woman.

Then Murphy Healey dropped the Murphy part. The campaign tossed out all the "Mitt and Murph" t-shirts. They are now waiting for the five Democratic gubernatorial candidates to fight it out at the state convention next month.

Some political awards are in order, I think. 

The Cele Hahn Award for the shortest race goes to Former Representative Donna Cuomo, who spent one day saying she was running for Lieutenant Governor.

Best Humor Award goes to Democratic gubernatorial candidate Richard Reich.

Strangest Court Decision Award goes to the state's Supreme Judicial Court, which ordered that state possessions be sold to get money for candidates

running for office under so-called "Clean Elections." First to go, a fleet of cars.

Best Award for Making a Point goes to Representative Joe Wagner of Chicopee, chair of the House's Election Committee and strong opponent of the

voter-funded elections. Joe, when informed that the proponents had permission to sell state belongings and were trying to get permission to sell his office furniture, went to work in a pod, and put all his furniture out in the halls of the State House.

Stupid Way to Spend Money Award Goes to Warren Tolman. The Democratic candidate for Governor collecting the most state money, the guy being paid

three quarters of a million dollars (YOUR tax dollars), the bottom guy of the five Dems in the race, the one with a 1 or 2 percent chance of getting the nomination. Who probably won't even get on the ballot.

The Revenge Award. House Speaker Tom Finneran, allegedly, tried to take revenge in the state's budget by giving the Legislature more control over the judiciary. Revenge, no doubt, for the Clean Elections ruling, according to press reports.

The Sore Quitters Award goes to a Western Mass legislator who has decided not to run for office again. And, it's not me! The guy sent out, he even paid postage for, a one page attack on House leadership. Outlined, from A to F, it offered his "insights acquired over these past many years and what I believe to be true." But he wasn't brave enough to sign it.

Most Valiant Try Award goes to the 22 Republicans in the House. That's 22 out of 160. And the 6 out of 40 Senators. The award isn't given for any particular reason this year; it's given just because they have the courage to stay and fight.

Finally, the Dumb Legislation Awards. The bill to make the Boston Crème Donut the state's official donut. The bill to make six the official number. The official butterfly (the great spangled Fritillary). To allow one-armed people to use crossbows. To make Natick "The Home of Champions." To regulate unisex toilets. 

There's more, but I can't stand it.

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