EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


March 10, 2013

Column: Hopeful signs abound as spring approaches


What it comes down to, media, is this: Whom do you believe, one of the nation’s best journalists, or a president who insists the reporter’s notes were wrong? The answer to this could mean the end of the inappropriate love affair with the politician-in-chief.

Second happy harbinger, the thawing of the center-right activist freeze. As Obama was re-elected and their local candidates lost because they were caught up in the Obama vs. Bad Republican Image sweep, some patriotic Americans considered dropping out of political activity. Instead, I saw many of them at the March 2 Republican straw poll in Danversport, enthusiastic about the special election for U.S. Senate, supporting one of the three Republican candidates in the primary or eager to learn about them and choose one.

Incredibly, all three candidates managed to collect enough signatures to qualify for the April 27 primary ballot – in the few weeks they had since Scott Brown decided not to run, with snowstorms making encounters with voters difficult. I thought it also a good sign that so many recently-weary voters were willing to begin another political process with their signatures.

Each candidate had three minutes to make an impression. State Representative Dan Winslow won the poll with 79 votes, largely because of a barn-burner of a three-minute speech; political newcomer and former Navy SEAL Gabriel Gomez received 59 votes, and former state representative and U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan was close behind him with 55. I’m supporting Dan Winslow but would be delighted with any of them replacing John Kerry as my U.S. senator.

They all presented their own qualifications without attacking their opponents; I hope their supporters can follow their lead throughout the primary, unlike those who used the presidential primary last year to seriously damage Mitt Romney.

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