Gabrieli Going Down Joementum Road Email Print

Venture capitalist Chris Gabrieli who has spent $8 million of his own money since June attempting to win the Democratic nomination for governor of MA -- is going on the attack.  While netroots-backed candidate Deval Patrick is surging going into the last week of the primary campaign on the strength of a powerful grassroots campaign, a fine debate performance and the endorsement by The Boston Globe on Sunday, Gabrielli is attacking rank and file Democrats in the sneering manner that helped lose long time Senator Joe Lieberman the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senator from Connecticut.

WHDH-TV in Boston reports:  

Chris Gabrieli accused Deval Patrick on Tuesday of being out of the Massachusetts political "mainstream," backed by "a small group of rabid supporters" who have led him to take positions that will cost the Democratic Party the gubernatorial election.

The Boston venture capitalist criticized Patrick's caution on creating new charter schools, his support for a plan to allow the children of illegal immigrants to pay in-state college tuition rates, as well as his opposition to immediately rolling back the state income tax rate from 5.3 percent to 5 percent.

"I understand that there are parts of our party that are energized by his position," Gabrieli said. "I believe the majority of the people in Massachusetts -- the mainstream values of our state -- align with me."

Patrick is leading in the polls 45-29 in the WCBS poll out today and 36 -29 in a Statehouse News Service Poll also out today. He is supported by five members of the MA Congressional delegation, dozens of state legislators, former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich -- Sen Barack Obama has campaigned for him -- and Patrick is out of the mainstream?

Patrick has an extensive volunteer field organization and has earned a loyalty and respect that cannot be bought. Rabid? This kind of attack reeks of the disdain with which Sen. Joe Leiberman and his hatchetmen held Democratic primary supporters of Ned Lamont.  Not content to mix it up with the candidate on the issues -- Gabrieli sneers at active members of the Democratic party -- the kinds of people who win elections.  

Of couse, winning elections is not the Gabrieli way. In 1998 he lost a mutlicandidate Democratic primary for Congress; spending $5 million to come in last. In 2002, he was picked by the eventual Democratic nomineed Shannon O'Brien to be her "running mate." He spent another $5 million in losing that campaign as well. The $8 million Gabrieli has spent since June on consultants and television advertising has purchased a tepid second place in the polls.

But Gabrieli thinks Patrick supporters are rabid while he embodies mainstream values?  Well, most people think that mainstream values means having sufficient respect for the voters you are courting, and who you expect to unify behind your candidacy if you win the primary, not to sneer and call them rabid.

Patrick laughed at Gabrieli's criticism during a news conference in which he received the endorsement of state Treasurer Timothy Cahill.

"Electable is who gets how much support and how many votes," Patrick said emphatically. "What people are interested in is not somebody who's going to spend whatever it takes to tell 'em whatever it is they want to hear."

Gabrieli and the once front running Tom Reilly have each spent many millions more than Patrick in their quest for power, and it isn't working for them. People want real leaders, not sound bites and attack ads.


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