By John Lynds
Treasurer Tim Cahill was right back where he feels most comfortable campaigning–here among the blue collared people of the North Shore.
In his bid to capture the Massachusetts Governor’s seat, Cahill made campaign stops last week in East Boston, Lynn and Everett talking about his family’s working class roots in Quincy and the pain he sees everyday on the faces of people out of work and nearly of money.
“I remember growing up and when I was 16 my father lost a good paying white collared job and it took him almost four years to find another,” said Cahill at a local house party last Thursday night. “So I know the affect it has on the family unit. When you look at statistics and see that 300,000 are out of work it’s not one individual it’s that individual’s entire family that is feeling the pain of unemployment so that statistic is doubled, tripled, quadrupled in most cases.”
Cahill campaign stop was the sure up his image as the independent, working class, no frills, blue collar Quincy native with a Boston University education but a background in the streets.
Cahill said during the campaign stops here…he’s one of us.
“I’m not saying that as an insult to the other candidates in the race but my roots are working class,” he said. “I worked as Sears while I was in college, I drove a beat up old car as a kid, I live in the same neighborhood I grew up in and if elected I’ll be working for the middle and working class–a group of people quite frankly–that have been neglected and forgotten about.”
Cahill took a few shots at the current state of the state and the newly passed healthcare reform bill being hailed by his former Democratic colleagues.
“I found the announcement that the state budget has a deficit of up to $295 million, largely due to MassHealth spending, very troubling,” he said. “It is further evidence that we have a broken and mismanaged health care system in this state. A national health care program modeled after Massachusetts’ experiment would bankrupt the country. I warned that health care spending in Massachusetts was blowing a hole in the state budget. I’m glad that the governor’s office is finally acknowledging that fact.”
Cahill, a fiscal conservative, un-enrolled from the Democratic Party in July, saying the state party had abandoned the core values and concerns of the middle class. A proven problem solver as state treasurer, Cahill wants to bring the same fiscal and common sense controls to all of state government.
The old school style of politics that Cahill exemplifies is one of the reasons he decided to leave the Democratic Party (which is aligned with Patrick) and run for governor as an Independent.
While the other two candidates go off to their homes in Milton and Swampscott, Cahill says he goes home to the blue-collar Boston suburb where he was raised and still resides today with his wife, Tina, and their four daughters.
“I think there is a bit of reality living in a place like Quincy because you’re not only reading about the struggles, or seeing the statistics of job loss in the evening news–you’re seeing it everyday in your neighborhoods,” said Cahill. “These are people you know or grew up with and it hits home.”
Cahill started his political career as a City Councilor in Quincy from 1987 until 1996 when he was elected to Norfolk County Treasurer. He served as county Treasurer until his election as State Treasurer in 2002 after Shannon O’Brien left to run for Massachusetts Governor. Cahill was re-elected to a second term in 2006.
While he was always an effective, streetwise politician it was when he rose to statewide office, Cahill’s skills as elected official really shined.
Overseeing one of the biggest departments in state government, Cahill increased the State Pension Fund by over 50 percent in just three years, reforming the State’s School Building Assistance Program, and generating $4 billion through lottery aid to cities and towns.
“I want to be able to expand my ideas of job creation and job growth and find innovative ways to raise funds to the governor’s office,” said Cahill.