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Maura Healey, Governor Elect of Massachusetts (Repost)

As a part of my Meet the Candidate Series, I sat down and talked with Maura Healey, Governor Elect of Massachusetts.

Maura Healey recently made history as she was elected the first woman Governor in Massachusetts and the first openly gay person elected to Governor in the entire United States. She was elected the first openly gay Attorney General in the country in 2014. As the People’s Lawyer, she has protected student borrowers and homeowners from predatory lenders, sued Exxon Mobil for lying about climate change, and held Purdue Pharma and the Sackler family accountable for their role in fueling the opioid epidemic.

Maura has led with a focus on engaging the communities she serves and centering equity in every aspect of her office’s work. Prior to her election as AG, she was a civil rights lawyer who led the first state challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act and stood up to the banks that took advantage of Massachusetts homeowners during the mortgage crisis.

She’s the oldest of five children raised by their mother, a school nurse, in Hampton Falls, New Hampshire, and she played basketball professionally in Austria after graduating from Harvard.

Connect with Maura Healey

For more information on all things Jimmy Tingle

Transcript – Please note, this Transcript is AI Generated. It has not had the discerning ears of a real human to edit it, as such, there are bound to be a few errors

Jimmy Tingle 0:00
Hey everybody, this is Jimmy. And thank you so much for joining us on another episode of the Jimmy tango show. First off, Happy Veterans Day weekend to everybody, especially the men and women in uniform it is because of you. And it’s because of the people who came before you that we can actually do a newsletter, speak freely on a podcast and engage in free and fair elections in the United States of America. So thank you. And this election day was one for the ages folks. November 8 2022, Maura Haley made history as she became the first woman ever to be elected governor in the state of Massachusetts, and she is also the first openly gay person to ever be elected governor in any state in the United States of America. So congratulations, Mark, you really make us proud. Marva will be joined by Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll, and they will be the first all female ticket to be elected governor and lieutenant governor anywhere in the country. Another first for Massachusetts. Andrea Campbell will be the first black woman to be elected Attorney General and Massachusetts. And Diana does Oglio is the new state auditor. And we’ll be joined by treasurer Deb Goldberg. So not only did Mara and Kim and Andrea make history Well, we now have five out of the top six statewide offices held by women and four out of the five who are on this show. Now I’m not saying there’s a correlation between doing the show and be elected to higher office. If that were the case, I would be president. But we are very proud that we did have so many wonderful candidates on this show. So big congratulations Tamara Haley, lieutenant governor Kim Driscoll, Attorney General Andrea Campbell, State Auditor Diana does Oglio and treasurer Deb Goldberg. And of course let’s not forget Secretary of State Bill Galvin. He’s not a woman. But this is his eighth term ladies and gentlemen, unprecedented so congratulate us and Secretary of State Galvin. Now we also did interviews with the proponents of the winning ballot questions number one and number four, and the new district attorney for the cape and islands Rob gala boys. So congratulations to all of you and your followers and your staff and volunteers who made your elections possible. Today I want to run an interview that I did with Maura and August as she was criss crossed on a state. We talked about what motivated you to go into politics to begin with. It’s a very personal interview, and how she worked with Charlie Baker at the time the most popular governor in America and how they were able to work together, even though they’re in different parties, which is wonderful to hear about and how her experience as a point guard playing basketball will influence the way she leads the state of Massachusetts. So it’s a great interview, it was a lot of fun to sit down with her in August. I thought I would rerun it for obvious reasons this week. I hope you’ll enjoy it. And I want to let you know that if you enjoy our podcast, please subscribe to it. Tell your friends about it. You can subscribe right there in the Apple podcast, give us a five star rating that’ll help us get advertisers. And if I want to tell you about a special show, I’m doing New Year’s Day, New Year’s Day, the shelf Servolo, a theater in Medford. I’m doing a show at seven o’clock. It’s a huge theater. I would love you to come down. We’re doing a discount for only the people on this email list. And the subscribe to our podcast. The discount code is Jimmy 23 Jimmy 23 It is the first day of 2023 the name of the show was humor for humanity. It’ll be funny. It’ll make you laugh make you think make you feel better. I hope you can join us it’d be a great way to start off 2023 And it’d be great way to put a few shekels in the old tingle bank account. So thanks, everybody, for joining us. Thanks so much for being a part of this show. We love you and we’ll talk to you soon. Bye bye. Hello, Maura Welcome to the show. Hello, Jimmy.

Maura Healey 3:46
It’s great to see you.

Jimmy Tingle 3:49
Great to see you as well. I know you’ve been working hard criss crossing the state. I was on your website. Looking at your background. You’re one of five children, I think from a single mother. Did you ever think you would be running for governor of Massachusetts and what got you into the political fray, so to speak what got you into public service?

Maura Healey 4:07
Yeah, you know, it’s a little bit about my background. Jimmy, my my parents are from new report up in the North Shore and I grew up by Hampton Beach. I was raised just over the border in New Hampshire. I am the oldest of five. My parents divorced when I was about 10. And my mom then raised us and you know, she went back to work as a school nurse. She was a nurse before that. And I you know, she worked incredibly hard to keep things together. All of us kids worked. I started out probably the apple orchard working now when I was about 10 and camp counselor and, you know, variety of jobs. I waitress my way through high school, college and law school, including for many years at the Hampton Beach casino ballroom where, you know, you’ve probably performed it’s learned a lot about life there probably more than I learned at Harvard. And, you know, I knew I wanted to be a lawyer I am or after college, I had a brief career, I played professional basketball for a couple years in Europe. And I, I came back and went to law school at Northeastern and began a legal career. I think I was drawn towards service though from my my legal experience. And and, you know, that led me to run the Civil Rights Division for the attorney general’s office two years later, it’s what led me to, to run to be the People’s Lawyer. Because when you’re in these jobs, when you’re in public interest work, when you’re in public service, you do have an ability to help people. And that’s been incredibly satisfying. I’ve been privileged to be attorney general, for the last seven years built a great team of 500 really hard working men and women who are trying to deliver for people around the state, day in and day out. And I’m running for governor, because I believe that these are really challenging times. There are a lot of a lot of challenges. We face up there. But there are also opportunities, Jimmy and we can be and do so much more here in this great state in a time when our our nation needs it. We need leadership and we need leadership from the States. And there’s no better state to lead from or lead by example, from the Massachusetts,

Jimmy Tingle 6:15
right. Well, tell me, I know, you’re following Charlie Baker, and he had a big approval rating among Democrats. First of all, how do you think he did? And what would you like to do differently?

Maura Healey 6:24
Well, Governor Baker and I have had from day one, a great working relationship. And we’ve worked on a number of issues, probably most in intensively the opioid crisis. I mean, we were right together, fighting manufacturers and distributors trying to get relief for families across the state. And he made that a top priority, I made that a top priority we work together, it shows what’s possible when people are willing to work together. And I think that’s what we’ve modeled for the state. I’m a Democrat, he’s a Republican, we worked extremely well together. And, you know, I think about, you know, his leadership, I really appreciate that he was somebody and is somebody who really wants to study the issue. And and, you know, I know COVID was incredibly difficult and challenging in terms of some of the decisions he had to make. But I know that every day he was, was bringing a commitment to try to help as many people as possible and see our way through that. I think as we look ahead, there are real challenges for the next governor, we’ve got inflation, we’ve got high cost of living in our state right now. People are priced out of housing, whether it’s rents or mortgage payments, some people can’t even afford to downsize, because they can’t afford to buy buy another home. Transportation, I mean, you know, we’ve got a tea, it’s outrageous, it’s on fire, it’s derailing every other day, every other week, something’s happening. That’s got to be fixed. Because we can’t have a functioning economy. Without a functioning public transit system. We’ve got to invest in workforce development and job training, invest in childcare. There’s so much we need to do. But you know, for me, Jimmy, I’ll come back to how great the state is, you know, we’ve got the greatest collection of human capital, intellectual capital, research innovation, know how we have a history of going first, whether it was on universal health care or marriage equality. We’ve got to we’ve got to really draw upon that. And I mentioned, you know, those basketball player, I was a point guard and point guards, they like to have the ball in their hands. But the real job of the point guard is to get people working together and get every teammate, you know, playing well with one another. And the greatest statistic for a point guard is not how many points you score. It’s actually the assists, right? And so I think about that in governance, it’s how I’ve tried to lead as Attorney General, and it’s how I would lead as governor.

Jimmy Tingle 8:47
I don’t want to brag Marva but I played point guard as well. Cambridge, Latin Cambridge, Latin 1973, suburban league co champs,

Maura Healey 8:56
that is something to brag about. That’s some serious, serious ball. Oh, yeah, it

Jimmy Tingle 9:00
was division one high school. But anyway, you’re right. It’s about assists. It’s about team playing Bill Russell just passed, great team player, great team player. That’s what he’s known for. His rebounds his team plane. And that’s what we hope to get from any of our elected officials. A person who can work across the aisle and a person that can share the spotlight with the, you know, the their team as well. And I know we’re going to be getting a lot of money from the infrastructure bill. I know there’s gonna be hopefully more money in the conference here in Massachusetts. So what would your agenda be to bring Massachusetts up up a few notches?

Maura Healey 9:39
Well, the first thing we’ve got to do is provide some relief to people I want to see the legislature act now and pass some tax relief. People need money back in their pockets because gas, groceries you name it, it’s all too high right now. Number two, we need to make the investments using the money that you speak up we need to invest in housing, what am I talking about? Building new housing, you know, the way through this housing crisis and crunch is to create more housing, not just at the lowest income level, but for the middle classes as well. We just don’t have enough housing. And I worry Jimmy about Massachusetts losing its competitive advantage. I don’t want to see companies leave Massachusetts, I don’t want to see people leave Massachusetts. But a reason they might is because our housing costs are too high. So that’s the first thing let’s invest in more housing. Second thing is transportation. As I said, we cannot have a functioning economy, if we don’t make the investments in public transit, are rails the T, commuter rail buses, or regional transit authorities, we’ve got a lot of money coming in, that can be used to fund a variety of projects, west east RAM, northern tier, which will help the western part of the state, we’ve also got north south, we’ve got a lot of possibility. There, we’ve got needed infrastructure, and let’s not forget our roads and bridges. All of this has got to be deployed. And as somebody who is really aggressive about combating the climate crisis, and I’ve said, I want to be the most aggressive governor in the country, when it comes to that, we’re only going to get people out of their cars, if they feel like they can get on a tee without it blowing up catching on fire, by the way, running on time, and running at times. That makes sense. You know, you think about our theatres, and our concerts and our venues, you know, and you think about the people going into those shows or events, you think about the people working those shows or events, we need to have transit that runs at a time that makes sense for people to actually be able to take advantage of them. And, you know, I think that’s really important. The the two other things I mentioned workforce development and jobs, we’ve got a tremendous opportunity here in the state to grow jobs, great paying jobs, green jobs, blue jobs, we’ve got an opportunity to invest in and create a whole climate corridor, just like we did with life sciences, all the innovation that’s going to power us away from fossil fuels is being developed right here in Boston and in Cambridge. And we’ve got an opportunity to really use that as a huge economic engine, we’ve got other stuff going on in the state that people probably don’t even know about. AI, robotics, digital economy, there’s all sorts of ways that for us to create jobs, but we’re not going to get there unless we make sure that our community colleges, or vocational and technical schools and career Institute’s are lining up and training students with the skills that they need to meet the jobs that are available. Now today, in our great state. The final thing, Jimmy, I’ll say is mental health. I’m not afraid to talk about this as an issue. It’s something that I’ve talked about for a long time, right now we’ve got a mental health crisis in our state, we don’t have enough mental health providers, it is too hard for families to find access to care whether it’s for anxiety, or depression, substance use disorder. So we in our state have to train up a whole army of mental health providers who can get in our schools, who can get in our police departments, who can get in our hospitals who can get out and about and be available to help families today. Because you know, I don’t know about you, but people’s mental health. It’s just gotten worse through COVID. Right, people have really suffered. And, you know, in the same way we got to make up for the deficits that kids experienced in school, we’ve got to make up for the real glaring issues we have with our mental health system right now.

Jimmy Tingle 13:30
That’s a pretty ambitious agenda. I was on the website. And one of the things that struck me was student debt reduction. I know that you’re very big on that. I mean, when you went to Harvard, I assume it was was that a basketball scholarship?

Maura Healey 13:44
Well, I got a lot of financial aid. The Ivy League doesn’t give scholarships. Very generous financial aid package. But so I was able to do it, right? No, but

Jimmy Tingle 13:54
you were able to play sports and also study and also be inspired. Yes, student debt is hugely important. But also you talked about the trades, and also about the technical schools. Speak to that a little bit. How can we take that to another level for all the kids in the state that college isn’t right for them, but we have all this work that has to be done of a technical nature, whether it’s plumbing, roofing, you know, electric, electricians, if we’re going electric, we’re going to lead electricians. Right.

Maura Healey 14:26
Well, and so much more. I mean, I’m looking at looking at life sciences right now. People to work in the labs. I mean, it is it is so needed. And you know, I am a huge fan of our vocational technical schools. Huge fan and we need to invest even more right now. Jimmy, these schools are oversubscribed. There are students on weightless just trying to get in because they know they know they can go and get a great education, get on the job training as well and be ready to be employed and out there. In a matter of yours with a job and with an education, that is not going to leave them with debt. I mean, if you’re going to in your right, I mean, for some a four year liberal arts education or four year colleges is the ticket is what they want to pursue. That’s great. But for many, many young people in our state, that’s not the route, right. And it’s also not the need, because if you talk to employers, as I do, around the state, across industries, so many of these jobs that need to be filled today do not require a four year college education. They require specified training. And some of that can happen through vocational technical schools, which needs support, also Jimmy community colleges, and I think it’s outrageous that in a state where the We Are the state that had the first public school in the country, we had the first public library in the country, every kid here should be getting a quality education and education that sets them up for success. And that’s why I am a huge fan of our vocational technical schools. As I say, I think more and more people are getting this. And that’s why that’s why there are waiting lists. But I don’t want anyone out there who wants to go and pursue that kind of education, to not be able to get it because there’s not room we’ve got to we’ve got to invest in those institutions.

Jimmy Tingle 16:21
Tell me your feelings on the millionaire’s tax,

Maura Healey 16:25
I support the fair share meme, I support the fair share amendment as a way to bring revenue in and make the investments that I talked about when we talk about transportation and infrastructure and housing education. That’s important to me,

Jimmy Tingle 16:40
are you of the opinion that there may be a surprisingly more millionaires that have see it as you do. And as many many people in the state do that they’ve benefited from the state, they want better transportation, they want a better educated workforce that is going to help them is going to help their companies and help the state overall, and they would not be so opposed to the fair share amendment. Is that your hope?

Maura Healey 17:06
That is absolutely my hope, because you know, we’re all going to do better if we have a quality public transit system, if we have quality schools, right. If we have housing available, you know, to meet the needs, this is how our state stays competitive remains competitive. It’s also the case that we do need to make some adjustments in our tax system, right. It’s why I supported with the governor put forward when he called for changing the estate tax when he call for lowering taxes for low income individuals and, and seniors, and for helping out provide tax relief to renters and the like. So, you know, we are capable Jimmy of doing a few things at once. Right? When it comes to the revenue picture and the investments that we need to make. And we’ve got to do it the times required. There’s, you know, there’s such urgency, we got to make it happen. Right.

Jimmy Tingle 17:53
And tell me about the driver’s licenses for the undocumented. Do you think that’s a good move? Do you think that’s going to help the state in the long run? And in the short run? Absolutely.

Maura Healey 18:03
You know, Jimmy I remember I was prosecutor in Somerville district court and doing cases where you prosecute somebody for being an uninsured motorist, right. And basically, these are people who are undocumented, who, you know, got into an accident, or were hit and didn’t have insurance. Why? Because they don’t have driver’s licenses. And, you know, as a matter of public safety, that’s why I as Attorney General supported this, because with driver’s license, you have somebody actually getting the training, so that they’re going to be out on the road safely. And they’re going to have access to insurance, which benefits all of us. So it’s a matter of public safety. And the fact of the matter is, Jimmy, people are going to drive with or without a license, they’re going to need to get to school to take care of an aging parent to get a kid somewhere to go to their job to go to the grocery store to go to the doctor’s right. So, you know, don’t you want people to be properly licensed? And, you know, there’s a way to do that. That is by the law that prevents fraud. And, you know, that’s all that’s all possible. And so that’s, that’s why I supported it. And that’s why I stood with many public safety officials supporting

Jimmy Tingle 19:15
right. Tell me why. Mara, some of your proudest accomplishments, and then a closing statement of where people can find you where they might want to volunteer or make a donation. Some of the proudest accomplishments of Maura Healy

Maura Healey 19:27
as attorney general, I’m really proud of the office that I ran and the people that worked with me in that office brought it every day trying to help consumers and workers and seniors and protect our young people and who weren’t afraid to go after those who were violating their civil rights were, you know, polluting our environment. These people working really hard. I’m really proud of that, Jimmy that we ran an office, very successful, about 500 people $60 million a year budget over the last seven years I have brought back or saved the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, close to $7 billion dollars if you can believe that. So I think the return on investment from our office has been pretty good. I will also say that I’m particularly proud of our work going after Purdue pharma and the Sacklers. We shut them down, we drove them out of business. We investigated, we expose the lies, and we held them accountable. And we’re using all of that money and the money that we got from going after other opioid manufacturers and distributors and McKinsey and like to fund prevention and recovery services, close to half a billion dollars that my team and I brought back to the state. That’s what it’s going to be going to. I’m also proud that we were there in the Trump years when a lot of things were threatened. Trump threatened to take away health care, he threatened to take away DACA and the dreamers program, he imposed a ban on travel that really hurt so many of our colleges and universities. He tried to take back and take us backwards on on the environmental regulations that have been put in place to deal with with climate change. I could go after time and time again. But we held the line. And as EGS we held the line and we stood up for the rule of law, we stood up for protecting the Constitution. And we stood up to show that no one even the president, the United States is above the law. And I’m proud that I was able to do that during that time.

Jimmy Tingle 21:23
Maura Everybody. Thanks, Mara. Best of luck, continued success. And thanks again for doing this and being part of the Meet the candidate series.

Maura Healey 21:33
Thanks, Jimmy. Always great to be with you. Take care. See you soon.

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