PITTSFIELD, Mass. — U.S. Rep. John W. Olver officially endorsed his colleague, U.S. Rep. Richard Neal, on Monday in the campaign for the 113th Congress for the new First Congressional District, as re-drawn by the state legislature during the redistricting process.
"Richard Neal is an outstanding fit for the new First District," the Amherst Democrat said. "He is a strong supporter of everything the district cares about, and he has been a great friend and partner in the House during my congressional service."
Neal has represented the 2nd Mass District along the southern border for 24 years. Beginning in 2013, his hometown of Springfield will be part of the 1st Mass.
Two Berkshire Democrats, Andrea F. Nuciforo Jr. and Bill Shein, have also announced for the nomination for the congressional seat. No Republican has entered the race yet.
Olver praised Neal's work as a member of the powerful Ways and Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over the tax code, trade law, Social Security and Medicare.
"Congressman Neal has worked tirelessly to exempt the middle class from the Alternative Minimum Tax, while at the same time fighting to end loopholes that allow profitable corporations to avoid paying taxes by re-locating offshore," said Olver. "It has also been his cause to make it easier for middle income workers to save for retirement, and Congressman Neal vigorously opposes Republican proposals to privatize Social Security, which would undermine the fiscal stability of the system."
Olver and Neal have served together during Olver's entire 21-year congressional career, with each representing parts of Hampden and Hampshire counties in the Pioneer Valley, and each representing different north-south ends of Worcester County.
"As a former mayor and city councilor, Richie knows about local economic development and how important federal investment and federal seed money is to local projects," added Olver. "And he is a real rising star within the Democratic Caucus. The residents of the new First District will be quite fortunate indeed to be represented by him."
Olver was first elected to Congress in the First District in 1991. He will retire at the end of 2012.
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Wow. That was really unexpected. Two guys, bought and paid for with the same corporate dollars, kissing each other's behinds. I can't think of anything more surprising. I mean.. who would have believed that members of the establishment are interested in perpetuating the establishment. I never would have guessed... My mind is now officially blown.
I think the endorsement speaks for itself. And if Andrea Nuciforo's family members, friends, and himself want to get on the internet and bash Olver, go ahead. Nuciforo announced three years ago he is going to take on the most progressive democrat in the country, and the most progressive democrat in the country today endorsed a very progressive democrat currently in Congress, who voted against the Iraq War, Gulf War, all of Bush's tax cuts, was the pointman for the democratic party on social security during bush's privatization efforts - which was successfully defeated - voted against FISA (wiretaps, warrants), and pretty much voted against everything George Bush was for. During the Bush/Celluci/Swift/Romney era Nuciforo left the fight at the statehouse to take a less challenging job as a register of deeds. He had no singular accomplishments and progressives deeply mistrusted him on almost every issue. Democrats stand and fight, they don't walk away. Nuciforo's history and record speaks volume to his character.
While it is true that Neal once filed legislation to end loopholes that allow profitable corporations to avoid paying taxes by re-locating offshore, it never even got a vote in the House. So with all those years of seniority, Neal could not even get his signature bill to get a vote between 2007-2010 when the Democrats held the majority? And this guy is a "real rising star?"
Maybe Mr. Olver needs to take his meds.
I'm shocked and saddened by Olver's endorsement. This further shows that all the cities and towns outside of the Springfield metropolis are not that important. Congressman Neal is inheriting a district he has no knowledge about. I find it very difficult to vote for someone who represented a more populous district for so long and I fear that the Berkshires, Franklin and Hampshire Counties are not going to have fair representation. Vote Nuciforo!
Unlike Neal who has been in Congress over 20 years Nuciforo left the State Senate after 10 years because that is what he said he would do.
Neal has accepted over $5 million dollars in Special Interest and Pac money, missed over 800 votes and plans to stay in congress for another 20 years. Time for Change!
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