Against Voter Fraud Protests, Worcester Mayor Plays the Race Card
[...] Clearly, I wasn't going to sit there, and let the Mayor's remarks which impugn, malign, and denigrate our integrity and character go unanswered. So, I put my remarks in the context of what we've been trying to do from the start with the commission, about the problems found and the work involved to bring these to their attention in detail and the laws that are being broken, that these are all legitimate violations. I went on in that context and they couldn't stop that [...]. I also said that "this is not about one election. Many elections are lost, many. This is about insuring voter integrity," and I used that as the way to get back on the Mayor again. I went on to say that his claims were "outrageous" and that he is "accusing citizens who volunteer their time as pollwatchers of being racists by saying we don't like the color of someone else's skin." Again, I stated how "I summarily resent and reject this partisan political statement by the Mayor and that it's outrageous." I left the podium...
One can imagine how galling it was for Awiszio to see the mayor and members of N2N debriefing in the hallway after the meeting, "They were out in the hall laughing it up and enjoying themselves talking."
Smearing political opponents is nothing new, nor is playing the race card when you know you're holding a losing hand. In this respect, Worcester Mayor O'Brien is following in a long tradition. He certainly knows what side his bread is buttered on. Neighbor to Neighbor and similar groups are an integral part of the institutional left's re-election strategy. The fact that they tread the gray areas of election and charitable laws isn't a bug. For pols like O'Brien, it's a feature.
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