I find myself deeply ambivalent about the outcome of the Ward 1 election.
As a progressive, technically I’m pleased that an unabashed progressive won. I am now counting 6 progressive votes on the Newburyport City Council. If something like the issue of “Infill” (see earlier post) should be brought in front of the City Council again by the Newburyport Planning Board, I would imagine that it would have a pretty good chance of passing.
I believe in a former post I described the winner of the Ward 1 election, Larry McCavitt as being “bombastic” and having a political “sledge-hammer” approach. I would add to that, that in my experience, Larry McCavitt makes Jim Roy look calm.
Now I would like to add that I am very fond of Mr. Roy, and I can imagine Jim Roy reading this, chuckling (I hope so Jim!) and nodding his head. And for those of you who don’t know Jim Roy, he is the one who has a “bombastic” column every other week in the Newburyport Current called “View From the Left Field” (which I happen to enjoy enormously.)
And I became very fond of Jeremy Gillis. We ended up forging a friendship much to the surprise I think to both of us. I watched Mr. Gillis chair an extremely difficult Public Safety Committee as City Councilor, and was impressed by his political deftness, his political finesse and obvious affection for people in the room on either side of the issue. I remember being very proud of him.
So when I walk in the South End neighborhood of Newburyport, which is part of Ward 1, I feel kind of sad.
My fear with Larry McCavitt is that Mr. McCavitt’s possible inflammatory style could give “progressives” not such a good name and things could backfire when it comes to the next elections in, let’s see, 18 1/2 months. And the electorate would do anything just to have peace and quiet, and would settle for anyone, never minding their political positions, as long as some civility and decorum was in order.
I asked any number of people who met Mr. McCavitt as he went door to door if “he behaved himself.” The answer was unanimously “yes.” So I hope (against hope, possibly) that trend has a chance of continuing. And that Mr. McCavitt will remember that yes, he is 1 of an 11 member legislative body.
Mary Eaton, Newburyport