I get a call asking me if I would like to meet Governor Deval Patrick at a small “meet and greet.” This meet and greet is to take place in a half an hour. Short notice. The caller thinks that this might “cheer me up.”
Why the caller would think I would need cheering up? Possibly my deep, abiding funk at losing Senator Kennedy’s seat to a Republican Scott Brown. Or the fact that it is February in Newburyport, New England.
I think, “What the heck. It would cheer you up. You’ve never met the Governor. It’s not snowing and it’s actually light outside.”
I look at what I am wearing, my artist painting attire, and quickly change into something slightly tidier. I figure if I keep my coat on, who’s to know? This does not exactly appear to be “black tie.” Nor does it appear that the “fashion police” are going to be about.
I make my way down to our historic Newburyport downtown, and realize, what can I say, I wasn’t paying that much attention to the phone call, that this is a campaign meet and greet for the Governor. Fine by me.
The Governor Patrick gets out of the car without a coat. I immediately would like him to have a coat. It’s freezing outside. This has no relevance. The Governor also is a lot shorter than I imagined him to be. This has no relevance. The Governor also has one firm handshake, and I wonder if I was a politician whether or not I would have a firm handshake as well. If I would do handshake strengthening exercises. Or if I would go the limp handshake route, thereby saving my handshake muscles. This has no relevance whatsoever.
There is a lot of talk among the “meet and greeters” that the Governor is in re-election trouble. Obviously the election of Republican Scott Brown has people spooked. There is talk of a feckless (I love that word, it was one of my father’s favorites) state and federal Democratic Party, that might throw the Governor to the proverbial wolves. There is talk that the Governor has made too many enemies. (Well, of course he’s made enemies, that’s what happens when hard choices are made during the governing process. Good grief.)
Ed Cameron, the organizer of all of this, is unflappable (another one of my father’s favorite words). He shepherds both his two young daughters and the gaggle of meet and greet with an astounding calm.
Ed Cameron can deliver. In charge of Newburport’s campaign to elect Governor Deval Patrick , he did a masterful job. And getting out the base for Martha Coakley, he was more than competent. Newburyport voted Democrat in the special election for the Massachusetts Senate seat. By a squeaker, Newburyport was a blue dot, surrounded by a red mass in Essex County. Ed Cameron is no one to be trifled with.
And even with the “mistakes” that Governor Deval Patrick may have made while governing the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, good grief, I would not want to see another Republican Governor. My funk would be deep and possibly intractable.