Markey has signed the Grayson-Takano letter opposing cuts to Social Security and Medicare and has stated that though he supports President Obama on gun control and health care, he sides with Senator Elizabeth Warren (D. MA) on the issue of Social Security. Markey needs to win this race to prove to the party leadership and any Democrats still on the fence that the chained CPI or agreeing to any cuts to Social Security is political suicide. But despite disagreeing with the President, Obama gave an amazing endorsement of Markey:The Alliance for Retired Americans, a nationwide organization advocating for the interests of aging Americans, cited Markey's record as a congressman as the primary reason for endorsing him over Republican Senate hopeful Gabriel Gomez.
"In the most recent Alliance Congressional Voting Record, Rep. Markey maintained his perfect 100 percent lifetime score,” said Edward Coyle, executive director of the alliance in a statement. "He has been a leader in opposing any changes to our Social Security that would cut benefits for our nation's seniors, including misguided proposals to raise the retirement age or reduce cost of living adjustments."
In an accompanying statement, Massachusetts AFL-CIO President Steven Tolman, a Markey supporter, criticized Gomez's proposal to raise the retirement age for Social Security benefits for future retirees.
"As Massachusetts seniors get ready to head to the polls for a special election in two weeks, they face a choice between a proven champion in Ed Markey and a candidate in Gabriel Gomez who has pledged to fall in line with the Republican orthodoxy of cutting benefits and raising the retirement age for Social Security and Medicare," Tolman said.
Cyole also took aim at Gomez for his proposal to use a chained consumer price index formula to calculate cost of living adjustments, which would result in lower benefits being paid out by the program.
"Gomez is in favor of implementing the chained CPI cut to Social Security benefits and raising the retirement age,” said Coyle. “In the Senate, Gabriel Gomez would be another vote for an extreme agenda that would cut Social Security benefits and balance the budget on the backs of our nation’s seniors – an agenda that would leave seniors to fend for themselves after a lifetime of hard work. Seniors can’t afford to send Gabriel Gomez to Washington.” - The Republican, 6/13/13
Meanwhile, Gabriel Gomez (R. MA) is having an identity problem:“Ed has a track record, and that’s why you know what he’s going to do when he’s a senator from the commonwealth of Massachusetts,” Obama said in his campaign cadence at a rally in Roxbury Crossing, Mass. “He’s not somebody who comes out of nowhere and says he’s for something, and then maybe he’s for something else.
“He’s been steady, and he’s been constant, working on your behalf. He’s been strong, and he’s been principled. And that’s the kind of leader we need right now,” the president added.
Markey, 66, is running against private equity executive and political newcomer Gabriel Gomez, 47, in the special election to fill the seat left vacant by Secretary of State John Kerry, a race that is critical for both parties as they try to claim the traditionally Democratic-leaning state.
“I need folks in the United States Senate who every day are waking up thinking about the people who sent them there and trying to figure out, ‘How do I make sure that they are getting a brighter future?’ That’s who Ed Markey is. I need Ed Markey in the United States Senate,” Obama said to applause.
“We’ve got a whole lot of Democrats in this state, and a whole lot of Obama voters,” Obama said, his shirt sleeves rolled up. “But you can’t just turn out during a presidential election. You’ve got to turn out in this election.” - ABC News, 6/12/13
Gomez is now trailing even in the GOP's own polling:During their 2012 showdown, Democrat Elizabeth Warren skillfully connected Brown to the national Republican agenda. A vote for Brown was a vote for Republican control of the Senate, she said. She criticized him for signing a no-taxes pledge, and put an ideological spotlight on his stance against President Obama’s jobs bill; against equal pay for women; and against mandated insurance coverage for birth control.
Markey is following the same template. He’s hammering Gomez on his opposition to Obamacare and an assault weapons ban, and tying him to the national GOP agenda on tax breaks for the rich and resistance to all Obama initiatives.
In response, Gomez insists that he’s nonpartisan and bipartisan, will talk to anyone and everyone in Washington, and won’t be part of any specific voting bloc. The result is a confusing blur of statements and positions that make it difficult to understand who Gomez is and where he stands. Some of the confusion lies in Gomez’s effort to dodge labels; but some of it also sounds like an unfamiliarity with issues.
While Gomez calls himself personally pro-life, he also said he doesn’t believe in litmus tests for judges; he could vote for a pro-choice or pro-life Supreme Court justice. He doesn’t believe in “preconditions” for deficit reduction plans, and would throw “everything in the bucket” for discussion — including elimination of the home mortgage interest deduction.
He believes the government has a role in regulating business — just don’t press him on what it is. He’s against the Wall Street bailout, but, surely, a Harvard Business School graduate should be able to explain his reservations beyond saying, “We can’t be bailing out banks that are too big to fail.” He’s environmentally “green,” but also supports the Keystone pipeline. Gomez welcomed to Massachusetts on Wednesday, even though the president was leading a Markey rally.
The confusion over the true Gomez identity began with the letter he wrote to Governor Deval Patrick, asking to be appointed interim senator and saying that he supported the Obama agenda. When Patrick took a pass, Gomez ran for Senate and won a three-way primary.
From the start, he counted on narrative to make his case — military man, businessman, family man, and Spanish-speaking man. It has curb appeal, but lacks a strong foundation. - Boston Globe, 6/12/13
And by the way, the big dog is coming to Massachusetts this Saturday:A survey released Wednesday by a Republican-aligned pollster found Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) earning the support of nearly half of voters and claiming a decisive 12-point edge in the Massachusetts special U.S. Senate election.
The automated survey from Harper Polling showed Markey with the support of 49 percent of Massachusetts voters, while Republican businessman Gabriel Gomez trailed with 37 percent support. Harper launched in December with the intention to rival Democratic-leaning outlets such as Public Policy Polling that have long owned the automated poll market.
Brock McCleary, a pollster for Harper, succinctly summed up the tall order that Gomez faces in one of the most Democratic-friendly states in the country. - TPM, 6/13/13
The special election is Tuesday, June 25th. If you would like to get involved with the Markey campaign, please do so here:Former president Bill Clinton will stump for Rep. Ed Markey (D) on Saturday, joining a wave of top Democrats who have rallied to the Democratic Senate nominee’s side during the closing stage of Massachusetts special election.
Markey campaign spokesman Andrew Zucker confirmed that Clinton will appear Saturday in Worcester for the congressman, who polling shows leads Republican Gabriel Gomez by single digits. Markey has already enlisted the help of President Obama (who stumped for him Wednesday afternoon) and Vice President Biden (who raised money for him Tuesday). Al Gore also attended the Biden fundraiser.
Democratic groups have also provided Markey with stretch run reinforcements. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Senate Majority PAC have each gone up with major TV ad buys. - Washington Post, 6/12/13