Charlie Baker Interview
The Hiller Instinct: Charlie Baker Interview
Hiller asks, "Have you had enough of all your negative ads?"
Baker says, "I wish they were running positive ads."
A TV annoucer in a negative ad says, "Reckless with our money" and "Billions lost at the pension fund."
"They" are the Republican Governor's Association, and more than likely you've seen their ads clobbering Tim Cahill, and criticizing Governor Patrick.
Hiller asks, "Do you want those ads off TV?"
Baker says, "It doesn't matter if I want those ads off TV..."
Hiller: "Because you're powerless?"
Baker: "Because I don't make decisions about what independent organizations choose to do in Massachusetts."
Hiller: "If you called the Republican Governor's Association and said I am the Republican candidate. Please take those ads down, what would they say, "You're breaking the law by calling us?"
Baker: "I don't know what they would say, but I'm not going to call them and ask them that question and say that to them because I don't want anything associated with my campaign to be associated with them."
When Baker officially got in the race, he repeated a famous political promise: "Read my lips, no new taxes," Baker said in July.
Hiller: "But you realize you alone can't guarantee that promise?
Baker: "I don't know about that, I mean..."
Hiller: "Well look at the number of Democrats who are on Beacon Hill. The legislature proposes a tax increase, you veto it, they over-ride it. Voila, new tax."
Baker: "I can certainly do everything in my power to make sure that it happens, and I do believe that that veto pen on an issue like a tax increase is really important."
Something else, perhaps just as important: Baker says the campaign has already changed him.
"I try to do my homework and I try to make sure I know what I'm talking about. But, if I've learned one thing as a candidate, I'm nowhere near as smart as I ever thought I was, and that's going to be an important lesson for me to carry all though the race," Baker said.
Charlie Baker has always been considered very smart, maybe even too smart.
But now he's been humbled, by a campaign not going as well as he expected.
Humility will make him a better candidate than he's been.
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