MARLBORO, Mass. – Voter’s interest in change has been loud and evident at the voting booth. This attitude could lead to Republican gains in the November elections. Seats that have been traditional Democratic holds are open to challenges in a year where people are willing to look at alternative candidates. One local race to watch is that between Steven Levy, an at-large City Councilor in Marlborough, and Danielle Gregoire, the current representative. Both are residents of Marlborough.
Ms. Gregoire has consistently run as the Democratic Party candidate, not a district representative. She has strong public and private union support and consistently cites their positive response as successes of her time in office.
In her previous run for office, Ms. Gregoire promised that her strength over her Republican opponent would be her ability to bring home local aid. Sadly, as most residents are aware, local aid has not been a priority of the Patrick administration or the legislature in general.
Ms. Gregoire has strong support from the teacher’s and local municipal unions and has always claimed to be a strong supporter of education for her district. When the opportunity to stand up for the district and speak out against lowering state education standards arose during the debate about adopting the Common Core Standards to get federal aid with Race to the Top, the Fourth Middlesex District was left without a voice to speak for it. Instead, Ms. Gregoire sided with forces that had no issue with reducing quality the education available to local students without any questions about the harm done to our students. She has yet to explain why adopting lower educational standards improves education for her district.
While her campaign site does not demonstrate an interest in these major education issues, she is eager to let everyone know that her major legislative initiative is a Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day. While the Kennedy family is likely pleased by the tribute to Special Olympics tied to one of their own, most voters are more concerned with Ms. Gregoire’s work on education for the district. Her continued votes on Race to the Top state initiatives and her stand on the Common Core Standards being adopted in Massachusetts are continuing to erode state control of education, but do not seem to merit a position by her campaign. Those who read her position statements find she enjoys the fun of being a legislator, but find little about her positions on the hard issues facing the state
Steven Levy has proposed a strong plan for cutting spending and focusing state income on issues like local aid. Ms. Gregoire has continued to speak about local aid, but even with a Democratic controlled house and Democratic Governor in charge has been able to do little to bring relief to her district. Mr. Levy has a proven record at the City Council level of cutting spending, looking at alternative methods for controlling costs, and honestly addressing issues with the residents about costs and services. Ms. Gregoire cannot demonstrate a similar record. This was her main argument in her previous election bid that with her experience at the state house she would be able to accomplish her goal of bringing local aid to the district and provide strong representation on issues like education. Since these connections have not delivered on her election promises, people are asking if voters will try a candidate who has experience delivering on election promises of cutting spending and controlling taxes. November could be an interesting time in Massachusetts State Legislative elections.
“House of Representatives Adopts Rep. Gregoire’s Bill to Designate Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day”
Danielle Gregoire State Representative