Ex-Obama Aide Enters Massachusetts Governor's Race

Monday, 24 Jun 2013 03:38 PM

By John Gizzi

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Dr. Donald Berwick, former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, has announced his candidacy to succeed outgoing Massachusetts governor and fellow Democrat Deval Patrick.

The 66-year-old Berwick resigned his position in 2011 as Republicans were denouncing him as a supporter of healthcare rationing — a charge the physician heatedly denied.

So far, Berwick and fellow physician Dr. Joseph Avellone are the two announced Democrats for the governorship. Two other Democrats, Rep. Michael Capuano and State Treasurer Steven Grossman, are exploring bids as well.

The likely Republican nominee is former state Secretary of Administration and Finance Charles Baker Jr., who lost a close race to Patrick in 2010.

The success ratio of former U.S. government officials winning statewide office in Massachusetts is mixed.

Although former Obama White House staffer Elizabeth Warren won a U.S. Senate seat from Massachusetts in 2010 and former Assistant U.S. Attorney General William Weld was elected governor as a Republican in 1990, Bill Clinton's former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich fell short in a bid for the Democratic nomination for governor in 2002.

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.

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