Representative Stephen Lynch, one of many Massachusetts politicians rumored to be under consideration for a job in President-elect Joe Biden’s administration, on Sunday said he does not expect to be offered a position.
Speaking to WBZ-TV political analyst Jon Keller, Lynch said he planned to stay in Congress and work with Biden as a moderate Democrat.
“I don’t expect to be offered a position,” he said. “I think I can be very helpful to the Biden administration and the Harris administration as a member of Congress. We’ve lost quite a few moderates. And I think that’s really, you know, those people were really Biden Democrats. . . . I think he needs us to work.”
Lynch said he could not offer any insight into when the federal government might pass a second relief bill for Americans struggling with the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.
The virus has been spreading quickly, with more than 256,000 Americans dead and cases spiking again as public health officials urge people to limit their in-person gatherings on Thanksgiving. Some workers who have been out of a job since March in industries that require in-person contact — like food service, hospitality, entertainment, personal care, and tourism — likely won’t be able to return to work for months.
Lynch noted that House Democrats passed an aid bill months ago, but that bill has not come to a vote in the Republican-controlled Senate.
“The thing that kills me is they were in a big hurry when the banks fouled up the economy and put the country in the toilet,” Lynch said, referring to the 2007-2008 financial crisis. “Oh, they couldn’t move fast enough to give the banks more cash. Now you have people who are blameless, that are out of work, desperate, being removed from their homes. But because it’s not Wall Street and it’s not the banks, people don’t want to come to the rescue. So it just tells you where the Republicans’ priorities are, in my opinion.”
Lynch, a South Boston moderate who has been in Congress since 2001, won reelection this year when he defeated a progressive primary challenger, Dr. Robbie Goldstein. Despite winning the presidency, Democrats lost House seats in the November election, something Lynch attributed at least in part to the party’s progressive wing.
“I think it did hurt us when you had, you know, a certain segment of our party chanting ‘defund the police’ and pushing a more socialist-type agenda,” Lynch said. “That did hurt in some states. Like I said, we have a big tent. And so the message that works for some Democrats is lethal in other parts of the country. . . . I’m a moderate, OK, so maybe this was self-serving. But I do think you need to keep that center of the country, and center the party, in a close and stable position. You cannot alienate those people or you’re going to lose your ability to govern.”
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