letters | a new mayor for boston

Trio of primary rivals elevated Walsh

Since the mayoral primary, Bostonians have sought to persuade the outside world not to misconstrue the meaning of the final candidate choices coming down to two men of Irish Catholic descent.

Although pollsters will need to confirm this, given the margin of Martin Walsh’s victory over John Connolly, it would seem that the triumvirate of defeated primary candidates — Felix Arroyo, John Barros, and Charlotte Golar Richie — acted as kingmakers for the new mayor-elect by endorsing him. Their combined support helped Walsh transcend his base and overcome a perception that he was purely the old-Boston labor candidate.

It is unclear to me to what extent the support of these former rivals reflects their own desire to stay in the good graces of organized labor or their sense that they have more of a future in a Walsh administration. In any case, our collective political memory should hold them significantly accountable for the election result, and I hope their judgment proves prudent.

Marc Lavine