By JOSH RESNEK
The mayor has not so much endorsed the state rep as he has rejected Everett City Councilor Mike McLaughlin’s candidacy.
In a traditional battle of the older order over the younger order coming up, the
mayor has chosen to cast his vote for the old order, for the rep who remains an enigma in the changing city.
McLaughlin has been on the front lines of supporting the needy, the elderly and Everett residents from all walks of life, age, color, gender, and race during the coronavirus.
He has become the city’s signature younger working man for all seasons and people and has done so without the support of the mayor’s cabal of businessmen, city employees and businessmen.
The rep is largely nowhere to be seen, showing up occasionally for ceremonial duties and then disappearing.
In an announcement sent around to voters by mail over the weekend, the mayor made his preference perfectly clear.
He described the rep as his friend and partner in government.
He urged recipients of the endorsement letter to donate generously to his campaign, a request met with grumbling and disdain by many of those recently laid off or who had their salaries reduced by the mayor.
The mayor refrained from saying that he owned the rep and that the rep needs help in an election coming up which pits him against a surging McLaughlin, who is now coming fully into his own as a city political power figure.
The mayor’s endorsement has more than a few obvious caveats and improbabilities.
Votes don’t transfer so easily anymore or even at all.
This was proved last year when the mayor’s best friend and chief campaign supporter, the popular businessman Al Lattanzi ran against McLaughlin in a ward race.
Insiders predicted early on McLaughlin had no chance because the mayor was backing Lattanzi.
Despite the mayor’s endorsement and backing, Lattanzi was unable to beat out McLaughlin.
McLaughlin rose to the occasion.
In fact, McLaughlin won every ward and precinct in the city.
The rep has been on Beacon Hill since 2015.
In the rapidly changing city voting demographic, the rep stands in one arena.
McLaughlin walks tall in another.
This upcoming primary and election are about the new Everett and who will lead it.
The mayor has thrown his fate to the wind with the rep.
McLaughlin won’t lose a step over the mayor’s endorsement of his opponent.