Mail-in Voting Now a Law

July 06, 2020
by Chris Lisinski, State House News Service

Baker Signs Mail-In Voting Law

A dramatic expansion of mail-in and early voting in Massachusetts is now law, and Secretary of State William Galvin is now preparing to quickly mail applications to all 4.5 million of the state’s registered voters by a deadline next week.

Galvin announced late Monday afternoon that Gov. Charlie Baker signed into law the reforms drafted during the pandemic and aimed at ensuring maximum participation while allowing people to choose voting options and minimize their COVID-19 risks.

This election season, for the first time in the state’s history, all voters who wish to do so will be able to cast a ballot via mail without needing to qualify for an absentee ballot.

By July 15, Galvin’s office must send applications for mail-in primary election ballots to all voters. His staff will then need to send another round of applications in September for the general election.

The new law also creates the state’s first-ever early voting period before a primary election, from Aug. 22 to Aug. 28, and expands general election early voting to run from Oct. 17 to Oct. 30.

A six-member legislative conference committee reached a deal last week after both branches passed their own reform bills. The House passed the compromise legislation 157-1, with only Dracut Democratic Rep. Colleen Garry voting against it, while the Senate approved the measure unanimously.

Baker had until Sunday to decide whether to sign, veto or return the bill with an amendment. By signing it Monday, he gave Galvin more than a week to meet the July 15 application-mailing deadline rather than only a few days.

Baker had offered few hints about his thinking on the topic. In late May, he questioned the urgency of the issue, arguing that “the elections are a long way away.”

Major police reform legislation has Senate Democrats prioritizing politics over public input

July 10, 2020

WOBURN — For the second straight day, it took a Republican to step up to the Democrat-dominated Massachusetts Senate to remind them that the drafting of laws affecting the public should not be happening behind closed doors.

Senate Democrats’ sweeping police reform bill was slapped together in private, and once again, the Democrats tried to ram through legislation without hearing from the public, according to Sutton Republican state Sen. Ryan Fattman.

Sen. Fattman has said the legislation was “rushed and done hastily” and noted that “the egregious sins of other law enforcement in other parts of our country should not be their burden to bear.”

“Massachusetts residents should feel grateful that Sen. Fattman decided enough was enough and stood up for them,” Massachusetts Republican Party Chairman Jim Lyons said Friday. “This overreaching legislation was crafted in private with zero public input. 

“The Democrats put together a politically-driven 74-page bill attacking police to satisfy the radical left’s mob of anti-police agitators, and did so out of the public eye.”

– Evan Lips, MassGOP Communications Director

Open Schools Without Masks

Please review this memo and sign the letter if you agree:
https://massgop.com/school-re-open/

Large Group of People Holding Board

June 25, 2020

Dear Governor Baker, Lieutenant Governor Polito, and Education Commissioner Riley:

For the last four months, children in our commonwealth have been forced to live without a school routine and accompanying social structure crucial to human development.

Our children have done their part to “flatten” the COVID-19 curve, sacrificing their own development for the safety of our most vulnerable citizens. Several months’ worth of data has shown us that the coronavirus overwhelmingly harms the elderly, and those with preexisting health conditions.

The data we have tells us children are by far the least vulnerable during the current pandemic, yet have made some of the biggest sacrifices in terms of their own development.

The children of our commonwealth have sacrificed enough — their lives completely upended, their personal growth shattered literally overnight, following the onset of the pandemic. Our commonwealth’s children have seen their education and social structure growth stifled.

Data gleaned over the past few months indicates this virus has more than a 99% survival rate and that rigorous sanitizing practices work.

We also know this — according to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, there is a 0 percent death rate for those younger than 20 years old.

The data does not support keeping young and healthy people, particularly children, under these restrictions for any longer.

There is a particular injustice to childrens’ psychological, emotional, and educational well being. Children with special needs have not received the services they need to progress. Wearing masks all day will suppress childrens’ immune systems and put them at risk of catching other illnesses.

It is not a healthy learning environment for children to sit wearing a mask for six hours a day in schools without air conditioning or proper oxygen flow in their schools. Wearing a mask not just physically harms their ability to breathe freely, but also puts up a barrier to normal social interaction, which children go to school to learn.

The mandates announced today will make learning, socialization, and day to day life harder for our children. They have already been delayed in their growth, and these rules will further prevent them from succeeding in their academics and socialization, which is why we send them to school. Suggestions that school systems would force students to face forward and stay apart from each other will only stifle teachers’ ability to connect with their students in healthy ways. It stifles educational growth; the opposite of what our Commonwealth should be doing.

We are putting children at a much greater health risk by refusing to let them be normal children than we are by them potentially being exposed to a virus which we know they are at an extremely low risk of getting or transmitting to others.

It is beyond time to let children be children again. Masks should be advisory for our students, not mandatory. The regulations announced today further hurt children, who have been hurt enough in the past four months.

It is now time to release children from the unfair restrictions which have been placed on them, and let them resume their normal lives once again.  It is time to open youth sports, summer camps, and schools, without restrictions.

Sign the letter here: https://massgop.com/school-re-open/

Columbus Day or Indigenous Peoples’ Day?

Westford Will Be Voting on This at Town Meeting

Columbus Day is a federal holiday practiced in 34 states.  My issue is not with the holiday. Have as many as you can.  But teach people the truth about those days.

The truth is that Columbus was a great explorer, an out-of-work Italian who got a job with the Spanish.   In 1482, the Spanish set a goal to become a world power.   Along came Columbus, who believed the earth was round and that a safer route to the spice capital of India could be found by sailing west, versus trekking east through the lawless territories of the nomad Arabs.  Columbus was not responsible for a genocide, chicken pox and other European diseases caused havoc; similar to the effects of the Bubonic Plague the European continent prior to discovery America or the Spanish Flu effecting the world at the turn of the 20th century.

We need to teach the truth about the indigenous American People.  I hope you are ready…

  • Many tribes believed in human torture and sacrifice, something Western Civilization shed some 1000 years before the arrival of Columbus.
  • Many tribes practiced cannibalism, again, something western civilization never embraced.
  • We think of the indigenous people as being peace loving, in harmony with nature. They were nomads in search of food.  If they came upon a group, they killed the group. They attempted to destroy entire tribes. Women were raped and killed. The same with men and young adults.  In contrast, western civilization established laws to prevent that.
  • Some think the indigenous people were environmentalists. No, they burned thousands of acres at a time to drive animals into the arms of those equipped with weapons to kill the animals for food.  Experts say that the forest size today is twice the size of when Columbus set foot in the New World.
  • Do not forget tobacco. This is a gift from the indigenous American people to Western Civilization. Tobacco, pumpkins, yams, tomatoes were American, but it took Western Civilization to cultivate these items, making them a source which could be purchased versus something that needed to be found.
  • Indentured servants helped in the fields, knowing that when their voyage was paid, they could become landowners. When the planters needed more workers for the tobacco trade, the stronger Indigenous tribes provided the first slaves to the European settlers — captured Indigenous People traded for European items. Maryland and Virginia passed laws limiting the service requirements of these first slaves.

What is the point?  The point is to tell the truth about history. Overall, Columbus helped create a much better world by showing routes that improved trade.  Were there issues? Yes, but they would have occurred regardless of who set foot in the New World.

If the Town of Westford really wants an Indigenous American Peoples day, make it the day after Columbus Day, and then teach the Town the truth about both events, including warts and beauty marks.

–  Tom Weaver

Massachusetts AG Healey on looted, burned-out local businesses: “That’s how forests grow.”

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WOBURN, June 2, 2020 — Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, standard-bearer for the Massachusetts Democratic Party, on Tuesday appeared to cheer on the destruction of American cities at the hands of leftist mobs, commenting that the “burning” devastation is “how forests grow.”

“Sadly, but predictably, this is the message our state’s top law enforcement official is sending,” said Massachusetts Republican Party Chairman Jim Lyons. “This is the message the Massachusetts Democratic Party is sending to business owners forced to shutdown for months only to watch left-wing mobs torch their life’s work.

“Out of all the messages her office could have sent to struggling residents and business owners left powerless as their neighborhoods burned, this is the message Attorney General Healey and the rest of the Radical Democrats have decided to promote.”

Added Lyons:

“By choosing to highlight this insane analogy, it should be clear to Massachusetts residents that no matter what else Democrats like Attorney General Healey say, they will always condone mob tactics. The Radical Democrats, led by the likes of Attorney General Healey, sat back and watched as cities went up in flames over the weekend, and are now admitting that this is all part of their plan to fundamentally change America by any means possible.

“This is no way to honor the memory of George Floyd, or correct the problems that led to his unjustified killing.”


CONTACT:  MassGOP
Evan Lips, communications director
617-523-5005 ext. 245

91 Massachusetts economists can’t all be wrong, can they? If it’s about your money, of course they can

MassGOP, May 29, 2020

WOBURN — Massachusetts Republican Party Chairman Jim Lyons on Friday slammed a letter signed by “91 Massachusetts economists” calling for new taxes to cover the anticipated state budget shortfall created by the mass-shutdown of commonwealth businesses in response to the COVID-19 virus.

“The answer from these economists, every one of them ensconced in the luxury of tenured positions in academia, who work at the beck and call of Beacon Hill Democrats, is never to trim away any wasteful government fat,” said Lyons. “Their answer is somehow always, ‘here’s a crisis that can be taken advantage of, here’s an opportunity where we can justify the Democrats’ appetite for spending more of the taxpayer’s hard-earned dollars.’

“Incredibly, these economists are calling for an income tax increase at the absolute worst possible time, when mandated business shutdowns have people struggling to make any income at all.”

Lyons also offered the 91 economists a reminder regarding their claim that the proposed tax hikes “could be phased back as the economy returns to its pre-recession level.”

“When Massachusetts voters chose to roll back the state income tax to 5 percent in 2000, it took nearly 20 years for the Democrats controlling Beacon Hill to comply,” Lyons said. “Their appetite for other people’s money is insatiable.”

 

Fair Nominations at Stake Due to COVID-19 Health Advisory

Kathy LynchAt the end of this month, candidates for elective political office will be required to submit nomination papers to the Secretary of State in order to be on the September 1st, 2020 ballot. By April 28th, candidates for state office, and by May 5th, candidates for federal office are required to hand in the qualifying number of signatures.

Collecting signatures has been very difficult to accomplish during the COVID-19 outbreak because the governor’s order urges “all residents to limit activities outside of the home and to practice social distancing at all times to limit the spread” of the virus. Many residents are afraid of spreading germs through the transfer of items such as pens and papers that are needed for signing nomination sheets.

There are two bills pending in the Massachusetts Legislature. State Representative Patrick Kearney (D) filed Bill HD4981. This bill would waive two-thirds of the signature requirements for the nominations of candidates for any state election office. State Representative William Smitty (D) filed Bill HD5011 to lower the number of required signatures for U.S. senator from 10,000 to 7,500 and for representative in congress, from 2,000 to 1,500. Both bills would be temporary measures, expiring after the 2020 elections.

To pass, bills HD4981 and HD5011 would require unanimous consent by the legislature. Passage would relieve candidates of added stress, pressure, time and money to collect the number of signatures required to get on the ballot. Passage would ensure the fairness and continuity of our state elections for this Fall.  These are reasonable accommodations given the extreme social circumstances in which we find ourselves.

I call on our legislators to take action and pass these bills with speed. Failure to take fair and equitable action to adjust the nomination processes for our elections, in light of the COVID-19 outbreak, could be viewed as a plausible attempt to exploit this crisis for the advantage of incumbent legislators. Legislators who currently hold office, and in doing so, have garnered larger numbers of supporters, could be seen as trying to give themselves advantage by preventing other candidates from challenging them.

Please take five minutes to contact your legislators to do the right thing, to serve the voters and allow an equitable, democratic election process, instead of serving themselves. For Westford, you can reach State Senator Ed Kennedy at (617) 722-1630 and State Representative James Arciero at (617) 722-2012. For other cities and towns, find your legislators here: https://malegislature.gov/search/findmylegislator.

–   Kathleen Lynch, Republican State Committeewoman

Lynch Thanks Supporters and Voters

IMG_3710I am honored to be the new Republican State Committeewoman in the First Middlesex District of Lowell, Westford, Pepperell, Tyngsboro, Groton, and Dunstable. The official  election results show a decisive victory of 3,982 (63.5%) to 2,273 (36.3%). The Vote Kathy Lynch campaign worked very hard to secure the win. This result was made possible by the many wonderful voters within this district.

It is a huge undertaking to run a campaign so I give credit to all candidates, throughout the state, who stepped forward for a chance to serve on the Republican State Committee.

I heartily thank all the supporters who contributed to and endorsed my campaign, made phone calls, hosted lawn signs, attended events and standouts, and all the voters who selected the Republican ballot, voting for Kathleen Lynch.

I look forward to getting started on State Committee business, organizing and building all city and town committees within the district, as well as recruiting, training, and supporting quality candidates. I will assist in developing the party’s political strategy, direction and priorities with attention to transparency, participation, and effectiveness. Once again, I thank all supporters and voters for this opportunity to help bring constructive change to Massachusetts.

– Kathy Lynch

LYNCH CRUSHES BURNS

Baker Effort To Take Over State GOP Blocked;  Lyons To Retain Leadership Post

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A former state representative candidate from Westford, who accused the Mass Republican State Committee of failing to support her effort to unseat Democratic Representative James Arcierio in 2018, scored an impressive political victory this evening, as she defeated a Governor Baker backed candidate for a seat on the Massachusetts Republican State Committee.  Kathy Lynch soundly defeated Lowell’s Mary Burns 3,914 votes to 2,256 [unofficial results] to take the woman’s seat as one of two representatives from the First Middlesex District to the State Committee.  The other seat was retained by incumbent Dennis Galvin, also from Westford, who ran unopposed.   Lynch and Galvin will represent Lowell, Tyngsborough, Dunstable, Groton, Pepperell and Westford on the Republican State Committee.  They will assist in developing the party’s political strategy and setting its direction and priorities. They will also be responsible for organizing and maintaining an active Republican presence in their districts by organizing town and ward committees, and developing local initiatives to highlight party philosophy and programs. The election of Lynch and Galvin will also mean that the town of Westford will have both of the district’s two representatives on the committee.  The seat that will now go to Lynch was previously held by Groton State Representative Sheila Harrington.

Lynch’s victory was particularly noteworthy because of the direct involving of Governor Baker and his political action committee (PAC) in support of her opponent.  The outcome in the Lynch vs Burns race was replicated across the Commonwealth by other candidates, decisively blocking a blatant attempt by the  Governor  to take over the state committee.  Lynch anchored her victory by an impressive 1118 to 201 margin in her home town of Westford.  She buttressed this outcome by winning commanding margins in Groton 366 to 127, Pepperell 708 to 216 and Tyngsborough 550 to 303.   Burns only took her home community of Lowell by a slim margin 1336 to 1008, while Lynch capped of her rout by taking Dunstable 164 to 73.

The outcome of this election demonstrated that the Republican electorate in the Merrimack Valley was not deceived by a battery of expensive political mailers funded by a Baker PAC in which candidates that the Governor supported misrepresented their positions with regard to their support for President Trump.  This deception campaign was countered by an intense air waves bombardment launched by talk show hosts Jeff Kuhner and Howie Carr, who exposed and ultimately devastated Baker’s cynical and deceptive strategy.  The results of tonight’s state committee elections place reform-minded Chairman Jim Lyons clearly in the driver’s seat with regard to shaping a new direction for the state party, one that is expected to adopt a more competitive posture toward the state’s Democratic party, particularly with regard to contests for House and Senate seats on Beacon Hill.

Lynch Endorsed by UMass Lowell College Republicans

College Affordability has become a major issue, especially here in Massachusetts. Too long have students’ troubles been either ignored or offered solutions that would make IMG_4774them pay for college for the rest of their lives through loans and tax hikes. As a club, we will only support politicians who are dedicated to solving this problem and have realistic plans to do so. That is one of the reasons we have endorsed Kathy Lynch for Republican State Committeewoman in the 1st Middlesex district (Lowell, Westford, Groton, Pepperell, Tyngsborough, and Dunstable). Election Day is Tuesday, March 3rd.

Kathy Lynch’s opponent’s record on the issue hasn’t been good. Since 2016, when candidate Mary Burns was appointed to the UMass Board of Trustees, she has voted to raise tuition at all UMass schools three times, increasing the financial burden on our students. This Board is made of people appointed by the governor and 5 student trustees elected by students from each UMass college (Boston, Amherst, Medical, Dartmouth, and Lowell). However, only two of the elected students are allowed to vote.

We believe it should be a top priority to pass a bill that grants all 5 student trustees the right to vote so students have more representation on the Board. The last attempt, Bill H.1222, was allowed to die in committee despite the Democrats having a super-majority in the legislature. We will also continue on to support legislation that supports our college students and reels in the runaway cost of tuition and fees, supports open-source textbooks, and other innovative ways to make college more affordable without burdening everyone with ridiculously big loans and tax increases.

Kathy Lynch has proudly offered to support these policies, “I have met the fine members of the UMass Lowell College Republicans. They are concerned about college costs and fair representation on the Board of Trustees. These are important and valid concerns and I support them in their efforts to improve the situation for all students of the UMass system.” If we help Kathy Lynch get elected, we will have a very important ally in the fight for affordable college.

This represents an opportunity to make students’ ideas and concerns a major issue for an entire political party. If we create a high enough student turnout it will also show the ruling party that they shouldn’t take college students and their votes for granted anymore. The turnout for this election is normally low, meaning it won’t take many of us to have a noticeable impact. Together, we can make a difference for future college students for years to come. Vote for Kathy Lynch on March 3rd.

– Shawn Nagle, Co-President, UMass College Republicans