Somerville Labor Coalition announces endorsements

On July 12, 2017, in Latest News, by The Somerville Times

— Photo by Donald Norton

By Rob Carter

The Somerville Labor Coalition voted to endorse 11 candidates for Somerville public office on Friday.

Incumbents dominated the selections, securing nine of the coalition’s endorsements. These included all four Aldermen At-Large and the incumbents for aldermen of all but Ward 4. A Ward 7 alderman was not endorsed due to the questionnaire not being returned for the Candidates Night forum.

The endorsements come after the SLC’s Candidates Night on June 27, when the coalition invited candidates for alderman and mayor to come address their members.

In Ward 4, where no incumbent is running, Jesse Clingan earned the SLC’s endorsement over his opponent Omar Boukili. Clingan is a union member, who was born and raised in Somerville.  He and Boukili butted heads over requiring civil servant tests during Candidate’s Night. Boukili believed the practice to be unfair because not everyone had time to study. Clingan, meanwhile, thought that it created a fair hurdle to ensure candidates were qualified to do the work.

The other challenger to receive an endorsement from the SLC was Payton Corbett. Corbett is running for mayor against incumbent Joseph Curtatone and challenger Kenneth Van Buskirk. An elected officer of Teamsters Local 122, Corbett promised to bring “shop-floor politics” to the mayor’s office. Corbett spent the majority of Candidate’s Night criticizing Curtatone, who did not attend the event, for increasing privatization and for “union-busting.”

SLC co-chair Ed Halloran was pleased with the Candidate’s Night turnout and, despite the decision to endorse mostly incumbents, said he was excited about the new faces and injection of youth in the room. School committee candidates will have a chance to address the coalition at a later date for a chance for endorsement.

A full list of the current SLC endorsements are as follows:

Mayor – Payton Corbett

Alderman At-Large –  William A. White Jr., John M. Connolly, Dennis M. Sullivan and Mary Jo Rossetti

Alderman Ward 1 – Matt McLaughlin

Alderman Ward 2 – Maryann Heuston

Alderman Ward 3 – Bob McWatters

Alderman Ward 4 – Jesse Clingan

Alderman Ward 5 – Mark Niedergang

Alderman Ward 6 – Lance Davis


4 Responses to “Somerville Labor Coalition announces endorsements”

  1. Buddy says:

    Interesting. Isn’t this a conflict of interest for any elected municipal official to accept this endorsement? Who do they represent, the unions or their constituents, the residents of Somerville? Simple, the residents who vote them in. The four largest municipal unions are the DPW workers, firefighters, and two police unions, they make up about 80% of the City union workforce. Yet, none of the presidents of these unions live in Somerville! What is their motive? Are they buying these alderman to negotiate for them? Don’t these unions have business agents to represent them? The alderman should be looking out for the taxpayer, not the out of town workers! Someone should call the ethics commission. Interesting.

  2. Courtney O'Keefe says:

    I was honored to receive this endorsement when I served as & ran for Ward 5 Alderman in 2013. Congratulations to all endorsed!

  3. There are only two outstanding “non” endorsements, Mayor Curtatone and the person he is endorsing for Ward 4 Alderman, Omar Boukili. Every other endorsement is the status quo. Interesting.

  4. Old Taxpayer says:

    I find endorsements completely meaningless. Not only would I ignore them probably would deter me from voting for that person.

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