By Andy Metzger and Matt Murphy, State House News Service
---- — BOSTON - Treasurer Steven Grossman has adjusted his thinking on a potential 2014 gubernatorial bid to say he is “leaning strongly in that direction,” and potential primary rival Lt. Gov. Tim Murray says Grossman’s plans won’t affect his own.
“I haven’t made a decision yet, but I’m leaning strongly in that direction, meaning strongly in the direction of running for governor,” Grossman said on WCVB Channel 5’s “On the Record,” which aired Sunday morning.
Murray said in September that he was thinking about running for governor and in November told an audience gathered at the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, “Like many of you in the room, I would like to be governor. I think it’s okay to say that out loud.”
On Monday, Murray said he didn’t see Grossman’s interview, but is proud of his own accomplishments over the past six years, a stretch of time where Murray has been a loyal supporter of Gov. Deval Patrick.
“Who runs or who doesn’t isn’t going to affect my decision. The people deserve a robust campaign so I’m not going to make any decisions based on what other people may or may not do,” Murray said.
While he has yet to announce or decide on whether he will run for governor or for re-election as treasurer, Grossman gave a preview yesterday of how he would run.
“I’m an optimist, and whatever campaign I run for any office, it’s going to be an optimistic campaign,” Grossman told the News Service. “Some people wring their hands about the future, and they want to talk about how bad things are, and how difficult things are, and how difficult things could get or are going to get. I’m not a person who wrings my hands. I’m more likely to be clapping my hands.”
Murray said he did not have a timetable to announce a decision on his political future. Like Grossman, and reflecting a likely new impediment for the 2014 race for governor, Murray pointed to the fast approaching race for U.S. Senate as a more pressing political focus for Bay State Democrats.
He said his attention will remain on his job as lieutenant governor “moving the administration’s agenda.”
“Right now, in the meantime, a Senate campaign has popped up and I know many of us in the party are going to be focused on that before 2014 begins in earnest,” Murray said.
When asked, Murray said he was not interested in running for the U.S. Senate or taking an interim appointment for five months before returning to run for governor. “To the extent that I’m having any political considerations, it’s focused on the governor’s stuff at the moment,” he said.
The special election to replace U.S. Sen. John Kerry, who is expected to be confirmed as the next U.S. secretary of state, has factored into Grossman’s considerations as well.
Pressed on television to make an announcement, Grossman said, “Leaning strongly in that direction, I think gives people an indication of my thinking. We’ve got a special Senate election coming up imminently; I want to play an important role in that because I want to make sure a Democrat succeeds John Kerry.”