Political Circuit

Police organizations line up to support Cahill’s campaign

Timothy P. Cahill (center), candidate for governor, met with police union members at Doyle’s in Jamaica Plain in March. Timothy P. Cahill (center), candidate for governor, met with police union members at Doyle’s in Jamaica Plain in March. (John Blanding/Globe Staff)
July 18, 2010

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If there’s an emergency on election night, forget calling 911 and head over to the party Timothy P. Cahill is holding for his supporters.

What the independent candidate for governor currently lacks in fund-raising prowess and poll numbers, he is making up for in police endorsements. On Thursday, he picked up the backing of the Massachusetts Municipal Police Coalition and the Medford Police Patrolmen’s Association. They joined the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association, Quincy Superior and Patrolmen’s Union, Springfield Police Union, and Hanover Police Union in endorsing Cahill.

“His commitment to law enforcement will allow our officers the appropriate assets and capabilities to ensure the continued protection of our state,’’ Harry MacGilvray, president of the Massachusetts Municipal Police Coalition and Medford Police Patrolmen’s Association, said in a statement.

Police unions are furious with Governor Deval Patrick for allowing flaggers, instead of uniformed officers, to control traffic at certain construction sites and for cutting a program, known as the Quinn Bill, that boosts the pay for officers who receive degrees.

Cahill strongly opposes Patrick’s position on those issues, asserting that it costs less to use officers at construction sites and that the Quinn Bill encourages an educated police force, thereby averting costly lawsuits from poor policing.

— Michael Levenson

Patrick plays host at two governors’ conferences in one week
If you really like hanging out with governors — and who doesn’t? — Massachusetts was the place to be last week. The state was swarming with them.

On Sunday, the National Governors Association wrapped up a meeting in Boston that drew 36 state leaders, including those from US territories Guam and Puerto Rico. No sooner did it end, than another group of governors — the 34th Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers — convened in Lenox, at the stately Cranwell resort. That drew the premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, among other notables.

A few governors crisscrossed the state to attend both gatherings, following the action like fans used to follow the Grateful Dead. (Without the mind-altering substances, of course.)

Governor Deval Patrick served as the pied piper, hosting both events.

“We did the two back-to-back because it was my turn to do the New England governors and we competed really hard for the NGA, and some of the people were going to come to both,’’ he said. “It was a two-fer.’’

He said he had no immediate plans to host any others.

— Noah Bierman

Independent candidate takes inspiration from Truman
As he continues to be pummeled by wave after wave of Republican attack ads, state Treasurer Timothy P. Cahill, the independent candidate for governor, has been looking to a famous Democrat for inspiration.

The onslaught has contributed to his plunge to distant third in the race against incumbent Democrat Deval Patrick and Republican Charles D. Baker. When Cahill was asked by reporters about the viability of his candidacy, Cahill said he has been rereading the 1993 Pulitzer Prize-winning biography of Harry Truman by David McCullough.

“That race he ran in 1948 gives me inspiration,’’ Cahill said during last week’s taping of WCVB-TV’s program “On the Record,’’ scheduled to air this morning. “He came back from nowhere. Everyone counted him out. But the polls don’t often tell the truth, and people don’t often tell pollsters the truth.’’

Truman’s election victory that year over New York governor Thomas E. Dewey was among the greatest upsets in American political history.

— Brian C. Mooney

Tweet of the week
We return, for this week’s gem, to the tweets of strategist-political junkie David Guarino (@davidguarino), a former reporter who couldn’t resist answering another journalist’s query on Monday about which places should not make a special panel’s list of 1,000 great places in Massachusetts: “Muddy River in August, Suffolk Co Jail on New Years Eve, State House Cafe at noon on a summer Friday?’’

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