APNewsBreak: Independent gubernatorial candidate in Mass. loses running mate

By Glen Johnson, AP
Friday, October 1, 2010

APNewsBreak: Cahill running mate quitting race

BOSTON — Independent gubernatorial candidate Timothy Cahill suffered another high-level defection Friday, as his running mate Paul Loscocco announced he was abandoning his campaign for lieutenant governor and instead endorsing Republican Charles Baker.

“I cannot sit idly by as my friends and supporters cast their votes for my ticket, knowing that the best chance to defeat Governor Patrick is with Charlie Baker,” Loscocco, a former Republican, said in a statement. “I cannot and will not let my ego get in the way of doing what is right for Massachusetts. So while this is a tough decision for me today personally, it is the right decision to put the future of our state ahead of my own self-interest.”

Loscocco’s name will still appear alongside Cahill’s an an independent candidate on the Nov. 2 ballot, but he will no longer campaign for the state’s No. 2 post.

“The ballots are already printed,” said Brian McNiff, spokesman for Secretary of State William F. Galvin. “Losocco is locked in as Cahill’s running mate.”

The most recent poll in the race showed Baker and the Democratic incumbent, Gov. Deval Patrick, in a statistical deadheat, with Patrick at 35 percent and Baker at 34 percent. Cahill lagged at 11 percent, only marginally better than Green-Rainbow Party candidate Jill Stein.

While that survey showed Cahill drawing evenly from potential supporters of both Baker and Patrick, many political analysts felt he was playing a spoiler’s role: too weak to beat Patrick, but potentially strong enough to prevent Baker from winning in a three-way race.

Last week, both Cahill’s senior campaign strategist and campaign manager quit, citing that argument. Adviser John Weaver said he would not help elect “the most liberal candidate in the race” during an interview Thursday with The Associated Press, and that viewpoint was endorsed by former campaign manager Adam Meldrum when he resigned on Friday.

Cahill vowed to carry on his campaign at that time, saying he would rely on longtime political adviser Scott Campbell. Loscocco, a former four-term legislator from Holliston, was present in Cahill’s campaign office as he made the statement.

Cahill could not immediately reached for comment on Friday.

A campaign aide said Loscocco called Baker on Thursday night to tell him of his decision. Loscocco then called Cahill on Friday morning.

Loscocco planned to appear with Baker at an 11 a.m. news conference in the Republican’s campaign headquarters.

(This version CORRECTS that Loscocco’s name will still appear alongside Cahill’s name, not Baker’s.)

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