We finally know the field in the upcoming Springfield primary for City Council. There are 20 candidates for eighteen positions, meaning two will have to be eliminated. Here is my initial take on the candidates, presented in the order in which they will appear on the ballot, which in Springfield favors the incumbents by automatically listing their names above all others.
James Ferraro - Never actually elected to the Council (he is merely filling a vacancy) Ferraro looked bad recently by calling for the primary to be cancelled for money saving purposes. Why doesn't he get himself elected in the first place before cancelling elections? His real sin however is that he doesn't appear to stand very strongly for anything. We already have a Council full of fence sitters.
William Foley - For years Richie Neal's cousin sat by and did nothing while Springfield went down the drain. For this he should be re-elected?
RoseMarie Mazza-Moriarty - Over the past several years she's run for nearly every office that's come open, showing time and again how anxious she is to leave the Council. The voters should grant her wish.
Timothy J. Rooke - The Council's best fiscal watchdog and a straight shooter, Rooke has more than earned re-election. He is also the only public official to have the decency to publicly apologize for what went on in the Albano era.
Bruce Stebbens - Widely considered the best Councilor of the bunch, the re-election of this future mayor is essential to Springfield's recovery.
Jose Tosado - A loyal Albano servant, he should have been shown the door years ago.
Kateri Walsh - It is impossible to dislike Kateri on a personal level, but politically she's a dinosaur.
Bud Williams - Another one who stood by in silence during the Albano years. It's time for fresh blood.
Claudio Concepcion - A popular 16-Acres activist, but his support of Chris Asselin showed unforgivably bad judgement.
Gloria DeFillipo - I hear good things about her, but don't know enough yet to pass judgement.
Lorenzo Gaines - The replacement for Bud Williams?
Morris Jones - What nerve he has running! His long association with the Asselins instantly disqualifies him from serious consideration.
Peter Lappin - Another promising contender, but I just don't know enough about him yet.
John Lysak - The second Stebbens, his election is essential.
Patrick Markey - Charlie Ryan considers him a future mayor and that's endorsement enough for me.
Vera O'Connor - Although a shameless liberal, she's still better than most incumbents.
Karen Powell - Every voter's dream come true, the election of Powell would give Springfield a major boost.
Charles Rucks - Long considered the person most likely to become Springfield's first black mayor, Ruck's election to the Council would be a big plus.
Robert Underwood - He's eccentric but a true friend of liberty. For sheer entertainment value he would be worth electing.
Hamilton Wray - A good candidate who his run before and lost. The voters should correct their error in November.
Naturally I will also be commenting on the Mayor's race and School Committee, as well as races in communities up and down the Valley, in the by and by.
I was in the Springfield Post Office downtown on Saturday when who should I run into but my old media friend Tony Gill.
While waiting in line, we were able to catch up on all the local broadcasting gossip. Tony is glad Channel 40 is being sold to a local owner, although in this day of Youtube, when anyone can film something and present it to an international audience for free, the value of traditional television is fading.
Who needs a TV station anymore? We are all broadcasters now.
While in Pine Point yesterday I paid a visit to my friend Tommy McCarthy of Gateway Hardware. His father founded the store, which is less about hardware these days as Tommy has gradually turned it into a hockey heaven.
In 1996 Tommy ran for state rep against Paul Caron and got slaughtered. The only remnant of that campaign is this sign in the doorway. Is it time that has left it in tatters, or his Democrat customers?
Friendly's Ice Cream, which was founded in the Pine Point section of Springfield, is having a video contest. Here's one of the entries featuring the son of a local political celebrity.