By Michael P. Norton
STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE
BOSTON -- While other primary candidates are dashing around in the extreme heat to reach as many voters as possible and attend public forums and debates, Gov. Charlie Baker has largely steered clear of both his Sept. 4 Republican opponent, Scott Lively, and the campaign trail.
Baker’s campaign is not among the many that are constantly reminding the press and voters of all the places where the candidate will appear. But that does not mean the governor has not been traveling.
In his official capacity as governor, Baker in just the past week has been all over Massachusetts, promoting the work of the government he oversees and often joined by Democrats serving in the Legislature as he promotes their bipartisan achievements. In just the past seven business days, Baker’s day job has taken him to Burlington, Plymouth, Quincy, Plympton, Springfield, Lawrence, Haverhill, Amesbury, Lynn and Chelsea.
Baker last Monday led a school safety roundtable in Burlington. Last Tuesday, he went to an apartment groundbreaking in Plymouth and held a “ceremonial signing” in Quincy of an environmental spending bill he actually signed on Aug. 9. Last Wednesday he visited a cranberry business in Plympton. He went to Springfield on Thursday to celebrate the state’s first resort casino. And on Friday, he toured businesses in Lawrence, Haverhill and Amesbury.
At the end of the week, his campaign collected and distributed to media the pro-Baker comments made by public officials at the governor’s public events.
So far this week, Baker was in Lynn on Monday with Mayor Tom McGee and lawmakers to highlight a Pay-for-Success English for Advancement program advancement ceremony.
On Tuesday, he held a State House press conference to preview Plymouth’s quadricentennial in 2020 and then visited the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home to draw additional attention to another bill he previously signed. At 3 p.m. Wednesday, Baker plans to be at the Fall River Career Center to announce the transition to MassHire, a brand that will streamline 23 career centers and 16 workforce development boards that each holds different names and logos.
Aside from four campaign launch events the weekend of Aug. 11-12, Baker has taken part in only one other public campaign event, on Saturday, Aug. 18 in Plymouth, while his campaign has sent Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito to additional events to promote the ticket.
Riding high in the polls, Baker has also dipped into his substantial campaign account to fund campaign videos and ads, but has largely refrained from detailed term-two pledges and generally said he plans to continue with efforts already underway.
The winner of the Baker-Lively Republican primary on Tuesday will face the winner of the Jay Gonzalez-Robert Massie Democratic primary on Nov. 6.