MA-GOV: Is Charlie Baker's Health Insurance Background a Liability?

We're learning that it's a rough time to be a banker running for office. Republicans are targeting the banking backgrounds of Alexi Giannoulias ...
by | March 12, 2010

We're learning that it's a rough time to be a banker running for office. Republicans are targeting the banking backgrounds of Alexi Giannoulias in Illinois and Alex Sink in Florida. Democrats are going after John Kasich in Ohio.

We're learning that it's a rough time to be a member of Congress running for office. Just look at Kay Bailey Hutchison's defeat in Texas or, well, all of those poor members of Congress who are running for reelection.

Now, Deval Patrick also is betting that it's a bad time to be health insurance executive running for office. Here's his attack on Charlie Baker, as reported by the Boston Globe:

Governor Deval Patrick yesterday took some of his most pointed shots yet at Republican gubernatorial rival Charles D. Baker Jr., accusing the former chief executive of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care of doing nothing to stop dramatic increases in health care costs that he said are crushing small businesses and families.

"Every time there is a hard decision, every time something has to be done with some urgency, putting something on the line for regular people, the challengers -- and he's one of them -- are missing in action,'' the governor told reporters after testifying in support of a bill he filed to cap increases in health care premiums. "And he's missing in action today.''

The response from the Baker campaign's Lenny Alcivar (in the same article) struck me as pretty effective:

"The governor had 3 1/2 years to take action on health care costs, but he didn't,'' Alcivar said. "For 3 1/2 years, Deval Patrick had the existing authority to do something, anything to address this problem, and he wouldn't. Today, hours after waking up to polling results that show his reelection prospects dwindling by the minute, Governor Patrick was forced to testify on a proposal aimed more toward salvaging his political career than helping small businesses.''

Josh Goodman
Josh Goodman  |  Former Staff Writer
mailbox@governing.com  | 

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