By Andy McKeever On: 01:30AM / Sunday September 28, 2014
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A cadre of elected officials rallied supporters for the statewide Democratic candidates Saturday morning in the new Berkshire campaign headquarters.
The Democratic Coordinated Campaign held a grand opening of a Berkshire office on South Street in Pittsfield with an array of elected officials on hand.
“Over the last four years, led by Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick and supported by the Democratic congressional delegations and Democratic elected officials up and down the ticket, we have put Massachusetts back in the leadership business again,” said state Sen. Benjamin Downing, who is the chairman of the coordinated campaign.
“Democrats have a record to run on. For their 16 years of governor, Republicans have a record to run from.”
The group threw their support behind Martha Coakley and Steve Kerrigan for the executive offices and a Democratic ticket including Deborah Goldberg for treasurer; Maura Healey for attorney general; William Galvin for the secretary of the commonwealth; Suzanne Bump for auditor; and on the federal level, Edward Markey for U.S. Senate. There are also a series of unopposed races.
Part of the coordinated campaign is emphasizing the difference between the Republican leadership of the past and the Democratic leadership of Patrick, Downing said.
The governor said having Coakley as his successor is a vote for the future of the commonwealth. While many may talk about Patrick’s “legacy” as he leaves office, the governor said he doesn’t see it that way.
“This election, frankly just like the previous election and the election before that, is not about me. It is about whether we are in fact going to have the kind of leadership that is about the next generation and not the next election cycle,” the governor said.
Patrick called the Democrats the “party of opportunity.”
The officials at Saturday’s event also included U.S. Rep. Richard Neal, state Reps. Tricia Farley-Bouvier and Paul Mark, District Attorney David Capeless, Sheriff Thomas Bowler and North Adams Mayor Richard Alcombright.
“I’m going to do as much as the campaign asks me to. We were out last Thursday at three or four events with Steve Kerrigan. I’ve been out a couple times with Martha Coakley. I’ll be out with her at two events [Sunday] — one is in Worcester and one in Dorchester,” Patrick said. “I’ll do as much as I can. I think it is a really important election.”
Neal said he already threw a fundraising event to help replenish campaign funds expended during the primary. He said Coakley’s campaign is about continuing what Patrick started.
“We’ve got to move on to keeping his legacy alive by electing Martha Coakley as the governor of Massachusetts,” Neal said.
Coakley, currently the attorney general, is a Berkshires native and graduate of Drury High and Williams College.
Capeless said he, too, is holding a fundraiser for Coakley but encouraged other Democrats to get those outside of the party involved. He rallied volunteers to talk to independents and others in hopes to get their votes.
But raising funds is only one step in the process. Officials called on volunteers to knock on doors and make phone calls to talk to potential voters.
“We have work to do. It has to be done in the usual ways. It has to be done by talking to your friends, neighbors and co-workers. It has to be done by talking to folks who don’t already agree with us,” Patrick said.
Downing said Coakley didn’t lose the election for U.S. Senate to Scott Brown in 2010 because Brown did anything special but because he was able to get the Republican voters to the polls while Democrats only got 60 percent.
“I have seen a commitment to make sure that doesn’t happen again,” Downing said.