Mayor Thomas M. Menino is scheduled to leave Sunday with his wife on a two-week vacation to Italy highlighted by a Mediterranean cruise.
The sojourn will include a stop in Sicily, where Angela Menino is eager to explore her heritage. “It’s Angela’s trip,” Menino said Wednesday in an interview. “It’s our 46th wedding anniversary, and she has been wanting to do this. She finally found the trip she wanted, and I acquiesced.”
The couple is scheduled to fly to Italy Sunday and embark on the cruise Tuesday, according to the mayor’s spokeswoman, Dot Joyce. They are scheduled to return to Rome Oct. 27 and fly back to Boston the following day, Joyce said.
The trip will pull the mayor away from Boston at the height of election season. Menino recently endorsed Democrat Elizabeth Warren in her bid to unseat incumbent Republican US Senator Scott Brown.
In a statement, Warren’s campaign said she appreciated the “strong support” she has received from Menino. The mayor has appeared at almost a half-dozen events in the past few weeks. Perhaps more crucially, Menino’s political machine has been working closely with the Warren campaign to turn out voters on Election Day.
“This is a well-deserved trip for a fabulous couple,” a Warren spokeswoman, Julie Edwards, said in the statement.
Warren “wishes them the best and looks forward to getting back on the trail with the mayor when he returns,” Edwards said. Political observers rejected any suggestion that Menino’s absence will have an impact on the US Senate race.
“He has made it very clear he’s behind her,” said Peter Ubertaccio, a political science professor at Stonehill College. “He doesn’t need to be personally on the campaign trail.”
Menino’s political organization had three-dozen people working a phone bank Tuesday night for Warren, the mayor said. On Saturday, more than 220 canvassers hit the streets, knocking on doors for Warren.
“We’re going to continue to work hard,” Menino said Wednesday. “I’m not the centerpiece. It’s the people out there making those calls and knocking on those doors.”
The five-term mayor will have time on the cruise to ponder his own campaign if he decides to run for a sixth term next year.
“I’ll get to do a lot of thinking about what the future holds for me and how we are going to keep moving city government forward,” Menino said.
A reporter asked if that meant he would be thinking about running for another term. “I never think about that at all,” Menino said. “You guys ask those trick questions all the time.”