Longtime allies of Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker called Governor Deval Patrick’s office Tuesday morning requesting a transition meeting with Patrick on Wednesday.
James Peyser, former chair of the state Board of Education and, like Baker, a veteran of the Weld administration, left a voicemail for a Patrick aide, asking for a sitdown among Patrick and his aides, and Baker, himself, and another onetime Weld aide, attorney Mark Robinson.
Neither Peyser nor Robinson is paid by the campaign.
“A couple of folks from the Baker team reached out to our office,” an administration official said.
The request is an Election Day show of confidence from the Baker camp in its duel with Democratic Attorney General Martha Coakley. Polls show a tight race.
Campaign manager Jim Conroy said Peyser had called the Patrick aide Tuesday morning. The aide asked for a means of reaching Baker after polls close and that the administration would contact Baker’s team on Wednesday if he wins the election, Conroy said.
Transition meetings are routine as administrations turn over, but political veterans said they are often wary of reaching out before results are in so as not to appear presumptuous of victory.
“I don’t think it’s anything out of the ordinary,” Conroy said, calling it “a standard, precautionary planning practice.”
Patrick’s transition team is being led by Brian Gosselin, a former chief of staff in the Executive Office of Administration and Finance.
A spokesman for Coakley, whose campaign team is staffed largely by Patrick administration veterans, said they have not tried to set up a similar meeting.
“Polls across the state are still open for another six hours,” Patrick spokeswoman Heather Nichols said in an email. “Once the polls have closed and voters have decided who their next governor will be, Governor Patrick and his team stand ready to begin a professional and smooth transition with the new governor-elect, including the traditional meeting between the governor and governor-elect tomorrow.”