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First off, congratulations to Congressman Ed Markey's (D. MA) victory in the primary!  I'm also thankful and proud of the Kos community for raising money for Markey and helping out with GOTV efforts.  Markey winning the Democratic nominee is a great victory for progressives and I am excited about the upcoming election.  Of course Markey thanked everyone yesterday but he also gave them a heads up about to expect going into the general election against Gabriel Gomez (R):

Markey will face Republican private equity investor and political newcomer Gabriel Gomez in the June 25 special election. Gomez defeated former U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan and State Rep. Daniel Winslow in an upset victory to win the Republican nomination.

In his 15-minute speech, Markey called for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United, the landmark Supreme Court case allowing unlimited political spending by corporations and unions. He talked about his record on gun control, national security, protecting entitlement programs and supporting abortion rights. Supporters were clearly familiar with his rhetoric. When Markey said “We need to make the NRA (National Rifle Association) stand for not relevant anymore,” audience members shouted the final words along with him.

While Gomez is a political newcomer and has portrayed himself as a fresh face in politics, rather than a career politician, Markey has a long record of experience in Congress and is running on his record.

“We have big issues that divide us,” Markey told reporters. “I am pro-choice and he is not. I favor banning assault weapons and these dangerous magazines that turn them into weapons of war, and he does not. I support protecting Medicare and Social Security, and he’s ready to put it on the operating table…there are big differences between the Republican nominee and myself and I’m ready to have an eight-week debate over these big issues.”

Markey called on Gomez to take a pledge, similar to one signed by Democrat Elizabeth Warren and Republican Scott Brown in the 2012 Senate race, preventing outside organizations from advertising. Gomez has said he will not take any pledges. “He is saying very clearly that he is welcoming in the Koch brothers and Karl Rove into the state of Massachusetts,” Markey said, referring to the Republican activists and strategist. - The Republican, 4/30/13

Here are 5 things you should know about Gomez:

He’s the son of Colombian immigrants.

As the successful son of immigrants from Latin America, Gomez's candidacy comes tailor-made for a Republican Party focused on broadening its appeal and winning support among Hispanics. "I couldn't be more proud of my heritage and the fact that my parents decided to stay here after I was born," Gomez, a first-generation American, said in an interview with the Associated Press. Born in Los Angeles to parents from Colombia, Gomez grew up in Washington state in a middle-class household. His father, who was educated at the University of Pittsburgh and Stanford, eventually went on to become an executive at the world's largest hops dealer, according to a Boston Globe profile. He learned to speak English only in kindergarten and even kicked off his candidacy in an online video in Spanish before switching to English. On immigration reform, though, Gomez has had to backtrack. When John Kerry's departure opened up the Senate seat, Gomez wrote Gov. Deval Patrick seeking the appointment. In the letter, he said he supported Obama's positions on guns and immigration. But since then, he's called for tighter border security, but also backs a pathway to legal status for people who entered the country illegally.

He’s a decorated Navy SEAL.

On the campaign trail, Gomez wears a gold Navy SEAL lapel pin where many candidates and officials wear an American flag. It’s a tangible reminder of his military service, which began in college when Gomez attended the Naval Academy. Before going on to SEAL training, he served as a pilot on board aircraft carriers. During SEAL training he became class leader, according to the Globe, and went on to meet his future wife, Sarah, who was serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. He left the Navy in 1996 to go to Harvard Business School. His service as a SEAL has not been without political controversy, though. Gomez served as a spokesman for the Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, which ran a 22-minute video bashing President Obama for politicizing the killing of Osama bin Laden. Gomez told the Globe he doesn’t have any regrets about speaking for the group. “Like anything else, I can’t control who all those guys are,” he said. “I’m not part of that group. I was just asked to go on a radio and TV show and talk about two points.” Now, the group is sending fundraising letters, seeking donations of up to $5,000 for Gomez’s campaign.

He’s a millionaire who has partially self-funded his campaign.

Gomez built a business career in private equity investments that made him millions over the years and helped fuel his political career, thus far. After graduating with an MBA from Harvard Business School, Gomez took a job at the Charlotte, N.C.-based investment banking firm Bowles Hollowell Conner, an unusual move for a firm that typically hired people with Wall Street experience, a former colleague told the Globe. Gomez, instead, came from the military. He then went to the Boston firm of Summit Partners in 2001. He stayed there for three years before moving onto the Boston-based investment firm Advent International. By any standard, he's had success as a businessman. From January 2012 through March 2013, Gomez reported earning nearly $1 million. He's turned his private-sector success into financial fuel for his Senate campaign, loaning himself $600,000, more than the $582,000 he reported raising, according to the FEC. He reported earning more than $8.5 million from 2007 through 2011 and paying nearly $1.9 million in taxes, according to the AP. Turning his financial advantage to a political one, Gomez was the first Republican to air television ads.

He ran this year’s Boston Marathon.

Gomez ran in the Boston Marathon, finishing a few minutes before the bombs went off, with a time of 4:08:03. He gave a firsthand report of what he saw and had to search for his wife Sarah and his children who were at the finish line. (He and his family were uninjured.) The bombings rocked not only the city, but also the Senate contest, with the Democratic and Republican candidates suspending their campaigns. That, coupled with widespread national and local coverage of the attacks has meant sparse news coverage of the race. That explains, in part, why Massachusetts officials expected voter turnout of only 20% for the off-year contest. "Whatever momentum this primary had and it didn't have a lot was totally exhausted by the bombing," Secretary of State Bill Galvin said. For his part, Gomez pulled TV ads immediately after the attacks and called on the Obama administration to try bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev outside the criminal justice system, arguing he should be treated as an "enemy combatant," the AP reported.

He’s got connections to Team Romney.

Life is not easy for Republicans in deeply-Democratic Massachusetts, where Democrats outnumber Republicans 3-to1. With a shallow bench of Republicans who’ve won statewide office, Gomez has turned to former governor and presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s staff for help, even though Gomez supported Obama in 2008. Gomez hired Bradley Crate, Gail Gitcho and Lenny Alcivar, all veterans of Romney’s failed 2012 presidential campaign. Crate worked for former GOP Sen. Scott Brown as well and serves as Gomez’s treasurer. Gitcho served as Romney’s communications director and Alcivar ran his online rapid response. But that’s not the only help Gomez is getting from Romney-world. Former Romney adviser Eric Fehrnstrom is helping Gomez, but from the outside. He helped create a radio ad for the Committee for a Better Massachusetts that looks ahead to the general election and attacks Democratic Rep. Ed Markey while asking voters to vote for Gomez. - National Journal, 4/30/13

Markey and Gomez also told us what we should be expecting in terms of attacks:

Democrats wasted no time in revealing how they would go after Mr. Gomez, saying they would cast him as an extremist whose views are antithetical to Massachusetts.

“Republicans were looking for the second coming of Scott Brown,” the Markey campaign said in a statement, referring to the moderate Republican who won the last special Senate election in Massachusetts, in 2010. “Instead, they got Gabriel Gomez, a pro-life Republican who was the spokesman for a ‘super PAC’ that attacked President Obama over the killing of Osama bin Laden.”

Democrats also noted that Mr. Gomez opposes a ban on assault weapons, even after the massacre of children in Newtown, Conn., and supports cutting Social Security.

But Mr. Gomez was equally swift in signaling how he intended to beat Mr. Markey: by portraying him as a career politician who is part of the old order.

In his victory speech, Mr. Gomez, noting the year Mr. Markey was first elected to the House, ran through a litany of hallmarks from 1976, including the Gerald Ford presidency and eight-track tapes.

“It was a lifetime ago,” he said. “Einstein famously said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Congress has enough politicians. If we keep sending politicians to Washington, we will keep getting the same results.” - New York Times, 4/30/13

Liberal organizations have compared Gomez to failed Presidential candidate Mitt Romney (R. MA):

Senate Majority PAC, a third-party group seeking to keep the Senate in the hands of Democrats, argued in a statement that Gomez is "Mitt Romney Jr."
"From protecting special tax breaks for billionaires at the expense of seniors and students, to surrounding himself with political insiders from Romney 2012, to talking out of both sides of his mouth, Gabriel Gomez is running a 'Mini Me' retread of Mitt Romney's epic failure of a presidential campaign," the group's statement read. - CNN, 4/30/13
And Gomez's campaign during the primary backs up that claim:

Gomez’s efforts during the primary to appeal to core ­Republican voters offer Markey a clear opening. In a January letter to Governor Deval Patrick requesting consideration for an interim appointment to Kerry’s seat, Gomez indicated he would support President Obama on gun control. But after that letter became public in March, Gomez said he would have backed a failed Senate bill expand­ing firearm sale background checks but would not support banning assault weapons.

In the same letter, Gomez, the son of Colombian immigrants, said he would back Obama on immigration reform, a stance used against him by his primary opponents but one that could ultimately lend him credibility as a bridge-builder and could prove useful in the general election campaign.

The letter as a whole, which both Sullivan and Winslow used as a cudgel against Gomez, could blunt Democratic efforts to portray him as hard right in the general election.

Along with gun control and immigration, the state’s next US senator will probably face votes on the budget showdown between Obama and Republicans, foreign policy questions like how to respond to strife in Syria, and national security, which surged to the fore in the campaign’s closing weeks after the Boston Marathon bombings.

The Markey campaign started in on Gomez Tuesday night, saying that the GOP primary did not sufficiently vet him as a candidate and that his nuanced position on abortion would turn off Bay State independents.

“A vote for Gabriel Gomez is one more Republican vote against sensible gun laws, ­Social Security, and a woman’s right to choose,” said Markey spokesman Andrew Zucker. - Boston Globe, 4/30/13

Plus this might be an issue for Gomez in rallying the base:

(022813 Quincy, MA) Gabriel Gomez speaks to reporters during an event of his campaign for U.S. Senate at an American Legion Hall in Quincy, Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013.    Photo by Chitose Suzuki.
Some Republicans will never forgive Gomez for his gushing letter to Gov. Deval Patrick begging for the interim U.S. Senate appointment, but most Republican voters didn’t seem to be bothered. - Boston Herald, 4/30/13
Luckily grassroots organizations are wasting no time helping Markey get ready for his run against Gomez:
Tuesday night in Massachusetts progressives made their voices heard. Liberal icon Ed Markey, the Blue America-endorsed candidate beat ConservaDem Stephen Lynch 58- 42% in the primary for the Democratic nomination to replace John Kerry in the U.S. Senate.

Now Ed will face off against Republican Gabriel Gomez, an anti-Choice fanatic and typical lockstep Republican.

It's likely Ed will beat him June 25th. But it's never safe to assume anything. Remember Senator Scott Brown! The good news is that all three Republicans in the primary got fewer votes than Stephen Lynch. But Ed will still need contributions to combat the Big Money Republicans are expected to put into this race. You can donate to Ed's campaign on the special page Blue America has for Senate candidates:

We are all in this together,

Howie, for Digby, John, and the Blue America team

The election is June 25th.  You can click here to donate:

Originally posted to pdc on Wed May 01, 2013 at 12:20 AM PDT.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), Shut Down the NRA, In Support of Labor and Unions, Massachusetts Kosmopolitans, Climate Hawks, and The Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Ok. We've got MA-Sen Race covered (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    poopdogcomedy, Empower Ink, RUNDOWN

    I see this as an easy win for Ed Markey.  I don't think at this point winning will be that difficult considering the ties Gabriel Gomez has to Mitt Romney.

    •  Yes, but Karl Rove and the Koch Brothers are going (10+ / 0-)

      to spend big so we need to be ready and make sure our base is active and ready to go come June 25th.

      Funny Stuff at

      by poopdogcomedy on Wed May 01, 2013 at 01:29:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Umm, don't go there. (5+ / 0-)

      The Republicans have put up another handsome blank slate. Gomez will shape-shift and speak softly - I've heard him, he's very good at it.

      Just like he got hired for the private equity firm based on those intangibles, so they hope he'll get to the Senate.

      Markey had better hit him hard and often RIGHT NOW. it's a special election and GOPers know how to whip up the true believers in short order.

      •  I'm not worried (0+ / 0-)

        Ed Markey from what I understand is one of us.  He's a long- time progressive Democrat who is a real fighter.  He's also had a long history working with Democrats.  The Democratic Party machine in Massachusetts is very focused from what I understand, particularly with Deval Patrick being a very popular Governor.

        I really don't know why the GOP and Gomez are even trying.  Gomez may be a slight but different of a campaigner but that means nothing to me.  Markey is anything but a wimp.  I think he's fighting harder than ever with all that is going on in the U.S.

  •  Boots on the ground (7+ / 0-)

    We have them. They don't.

    Scott Brown had money last fall. Name recognition. Good favorabilities, too. Most popular politician in Massachusetts by some polls.

    Lost by 8 points to a Harvard Law professor who was unknown beyond NPR, MSNBC, and Route 128 when the campaign began. That's an ass whupping.

    This will be a GOTV election. Nobody does GOTV better than Massachusetts Dems.

    Not saying lightning can't strike twice. But I doubt it.

    Peace on Earth was all it said.

    by BobBlueMass on Wed May 01, 2013 at 04:26:09 AM PDT

    •  A lot of those boots on the ground are Lynch boots (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude

      They aren't going to be so enthusiastic about Markey.

      •  Comments like this one wont help: (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        on the one hand, he's a Navy SEAL(3+ / 0-)

        on the other hand, he's a Hispanic immigrant.  Could go either way.

        Yes, I have a low opinion of Lynch voters.

        by cordgrass on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 09:21:10 PM

        "One of the greatest tragedies of man's long trek along the highway of history has been the limiting of neighborly concern to tribe, race, class or nation." Martin Luther King, Jr.

        by brae70 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 06:07:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  true (0+ / 0-)

          so what does Markey do to get the Lynch vote?

          •  Well, Markey showed some class last night (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cordgrass, northerntier

            when he gave extensive praise to Lynch and his supporters.  This was more than the usual boilerplate "I thank my opponent and now let's all work together" stuff.

            Now if I can coin a phrase "It's the economy, stupid."

            Ed knows that we blue-collar types ought to be treated as valued members of society.

            As you said, some Lynch voters are Repubs and are beyond hope, but no great loss there.

            "One of the greatest tragedies of man's long trek along the highway of history has been the limiting of neighborly concern to tribe, race, class or nation." Martin Luther King, Jr.

            by brae70 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 06:41:43 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Unity is the order of the day (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cordgrass, BobBlueMass, Eyesbright, brae70

        Lynch praised Markey, everyone (Markey included) praised Lynch. The unions will support Markey over some guy with a private equity background.

        Republicans...think the American standard of living is a fine thing--so long as it doesn't spread to all the people. And they admire the Government of the United States so much that they would like to buy it. Harry S. Truman

        by fenway49 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 06:45:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I sure hope so nt (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Eyesbright, brae70
          •  They will. It's almost a no brainer. (0+ / 0-)

            (Cops might be an exception as they lean Republican.)

            Actually some of them did in the primary, like SEIU, which has a good deal of influence in the Latino community. Some of them remained neutral, as did the central bodies, which was a practical decision on their part.

            "One of the greatest tragedies of man's long trek along the highway of history has been the limiting of neighborly concern to tribe, race, class or nation." Martin Luther King, Jr.

            by brae70 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 01:56:21 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Meh. We'll see. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        brae70, Eyesbright

        I have a better opinion of Lynch, and his voters. More than a few voted for Warren and Patrick. Not to mention a Haitian in yesterday's state senate special.

        I know plenty of Lynch voters. Nearly all of them are good Democrats who will be there for Markey in June. They sure as shit aren't gonna be crazy about some investment banker, or whatever, nobody who couldn't even get elected selectman in his town.

        Congressman Lynch and I have disagreed on many things. We are not particularly fond of each other. But i believe he will be a team player here, as he has been in other elections. Besides, he wants to run statewide again. Pissing people off by dumping on Markey doesn't help. He's conservative, but he's not crazy.

        Markey has a pretty good record of appealing to and bringing out blue collar Dems. He's been doing it for years. And the unions will be strong for Markey.

        Peace on Earth was all it said.

        by BobBlueMass on Wed May 01, 2013 at 01:02:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  This Lynch voter thanks you for that coment. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          I'll stack up my liberal credentials against almost anybody here.  I was born and raised in Newton, that bastion of liberalism, and cut my politcal teeth there. I supported Robert Drinan and Barney Frank  I spoke in favor when our student council, NHS 1970, chose Howard Zinn as our graduation speaker. Yet we also sent a professional boxer, Joe DeNucci, to the Legislature and later to the Auditor's office.  

          Many people from this demographic, union or not, went for Lynch out of a sense of pride that someone with the same type of background could go to law school and win a seat in Congress.  If some can take pride in their daughter getting a masters degree or whatever (and they very well should) then we can take pride in this.

          Many of the unions endorsed Lynch because he supported them on important legislation.  When he got his law degree he took on many of the unions as clients, even though he could have sold out and gone into the much more lucrative field of corporate law. When your friends need you, you help them.  it's what we do. I wish more people could understand this.

          "One of the greatest tragedies of man's long trek along the highway of history has been the limiting of neighborly concern to tribe, race, class or nation." Martin Luther King, Jr.

          by brae70 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 01:47:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  The letter proved Gomez is the Say Anything (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fenway49, Eyesbright

    candidate. He's a businessman like Willard so he is used to telling investors what they want to hear. He's malleable. The Letter proved that. Assault weapons ban. So he was for it before he was against it. Same with immigration reform.  And killing Bin Laden was wrong, why?

  •  Republicans were voting in the Democratic primary (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, unfangus, Eyesbright

    because they wanted Lynch to win, because he's one of them.  I was listening to WBZ talk radio last night and the host was talking about how he had encouraged his (Republican) listeners to do that, and he did that.

    So don't assume because the Democratic turnout was larger than the Republican one that Markey will waltz to victory.  Gomez is going to get some of the Hispanic vote, he's going to get the rich bastard vote (because he was an equities trader) and don't underestimate the emotional appeal that a picture of him crossing the finish line at the Marathon is going to have with voters.  Markey is vulnerable because he doesn't live here--Gomez can whip out his Marathon pix showing he IS Boston.

    •  A conservative friend of mine, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cordgrass, northerntier

      here in MA, posted on Facebook that he was torn. Should he bother voting, since the GOP had no candidate that he could support? He had replies from other conservatives who felt the same way. We do indeed need to focus on this race. But support for Gomez seems soft. And since we went through this "Washington Outsider" crap with Brown, that trick may not work this time. And MA Hispanics are not known to be enthusiastic about special elections. And they won't automatically support Gomez because of his heritage, either.
      Let's GOTV!

      Welcome To The Disinformation Age!

      by kitebro on Wed May 01, 2013 at 06:39:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Come on now (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Real Republicans CAN'T vote in the Democratic primary, only unenrolleds. If they really are Republicans without bothering to enroll, they did have a competitive GOP primary to worry about.

      Markey has lived in Malden his whole life. This "Maryland" crap is just GOP propaganda that nobody cares about. Markey won his 2012 race with more than 2/3. He won last night with almost 58% against a proven vote-getter. He opens his mouth and sounds like Boston. Gomez grew up in LA. And now Gomez IS Boston?

      Republicans...think the American standard of living is a fine thing--so long as it doesn't spread to all the people. And they admire the Government of the United States so much that they would like to buy it. Harry S. Truman

      by fenway49 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 06:51:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Beware, Massachusetts voters. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The choice of Gomez over established political figures speaks volumes about the basic issue in this race.

    Republicans chose a non-politician as a statement that they are tired and disgusted with Washington politics and they favor anyone who might end the dysfunction and politics-for-hire that is rampant there.

    A fresh face that serves his/her constituents instead of the gridlock in Washington has an appeal to Massachusetts voters (to all voters, for that matter) that supercedes party affiliation.  

    •  Nah (0+ / 0-)

      He had almost three times as much cash as the two opponents together. He's the only one who got on TV. That got him a lot of late-breaking voters from the huge pool of undecided who didn't know or like anything about the candidates.

      Winslow never got traction. Sullivan was boring, couldn't raise funds, and alienated social conservatives and the hard right (who initially supported him) because, with an eye on the general, he wouldn't go to their events.

      The guy's won one lackluster primary with turnout about 1/3 of my latest county sheriff's race. Let's not anoint him yet.

      Republicans...think the American standard of living is a fine thing--so long as it doesn't spread to all the people. And they admire the Government of the United States so much that they would like to buy it. Harry S. Truman

      by fenway49 on Wed May 01, 2013 at 09:22:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  great diary -thought I was on the front page for (0+ / 0-)


    Women are 51% of the population yet are represented in congress by barely 17%! Until our representation reflects the population, we risk sliding backwards .....

    by 51percent on Wed May 01, 2013 at 04:02:48 PM PDT

  •  shhhhh .... don't tell Gomez how despised (0+ / 0-)

    Romney is in this state.
    Why is the GOP going to waste their money?
    IF there was any chance this guy would win, they will have a year (or is it two?) before whomever wins has to run again - so you get the same scott brown thing, looks good on paper (read looked sexy in a centerfold - to too many soccer-moms) but when the rubber meets the road, the guy was pissing off both sides, the republicans are so concerned about making the president look bad that any vote that might support a program or a budge from the prsident will not be considered towing the line  -
    Gomez wouldn't be able to give the Kochs what they want if elected and then be re-elected.

    Dude is also pro-life and that does it for many of us. I don't care if he promises not to try to overturn roe v wade - puleese. knowing that you believe women shouldn't be able to make their own choices ... done dude.

    I just hope he doesn't look good in a barn coat!

    Women are 51% of the population yet are represented in congress by barely 17%! Until our representation reflects the population, we risk sliding backwards .....

    by 51percent on Wed May 01, 2013 at 04:17:56 PM PDT

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