, Salem, MA


September 26, 2012

Reflections on Romney

Local, state officials look back on former governor


Scanlon, a political independent, wasn’t a fan of the former governor.

“He never visited Beverly when I was mayor. He met with the Mayors Association once, it didn’t go well, and it never happened again,” Scanlon said, describing a Romney PowerPoint presentation that was “poorly received” and regarded by many mayors as distant. “I don’t think he was accessible to anyone. I think all the mayors felt he wasn’t very connected.”

Most meetings at the Statehouse begin with some lighthearted banter, but for Romney and then-Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey, “that wasn’t either of their styles,” said Rep. John Keenan, a Salem Democrat. “I would describe them both as matter-of-fact, very professional.”

Hill also described Romney as very professional, but said the governor was warm and frequently spoke about his family in caucus meetings. Hill disagreed with the perception that Romney’s CEO-like style was cold.

“When he was elected, he was not a creature of Beacon Hill; he had a business background. He wasn’t accustomed to all the backslapping that goes on here,” Hill said.

“When he took office, there was a huge tsunami of an economic downturn, and he had to put his business cap on and be very calculating about how to get us out of this storm. I saw someone who wanted to see the commonwealth persevere through very bad economic times.”

Tarr described Romney as a passionate leader who had the courage to fight for what he believed.

In May 2005, Romney introduced Melanie’s Law — named after a 13-year-old girl killed by a repeat drunken driver — which set new, harsher laws for people convicted of drunken driving. The House Judiciary Committee removed many of the tougher provisions, so Romney sent it back and demanded more.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

Local News
  • Keenan to resign to take Salem State job

    SALEM — State Rep. John Keenan said Tuesday he will resign from office Aug. 24 to take a new job as vice president of administration at Salem State University.
    His announcement ended months of speculation about where the five-term Democrat would end up after leaving the Legislature. As it turns out, he is leaving four months before his term would have expired.

    July 29, 2014

  • 140730_SN_DLE_DEMOLITION5 Demolition of Salem Harbor Station begins

    SALEM -- It all begins with B5. Or ends, depending on how you look at it. Demolition began at Salem Harbor Station Wednesday afternoon, with crews first setting upon one of the power plant's 11 steel tanks. The work was supposed to begin Monday, but

    July 31, 2014 7 Photos

  • Market Basket seeks replacement workers through job fair next week

    Market Basket began advertising a job fair for store managers and assistant managers in a direct shot at the current managers who signed petitions Monday threatening to resign if former CEO Arthur T. Demoulas is not rehired. The ad, which will appear

    July 31, 2014 2 Stories

  • Mary Manning Recovering Salem principal says thanks

    SALEM -- Just about a month before she was set to retire after 25 years as the principal of Collins Middle School, Mary Manning entered the hospital with a life-threatening condition. She hasn't been home since. A month later, in June, friends and co

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Former school janitor Robert Scribner sentenced for assaults in truck

    SALEM -- A now-former Marblehead school janitor was ordered to serve a year in jail Wednesday after pleading guilty to charges that he assaulted and threatened to kill his estranged girlfriend after trapping her in his pickup truck in May. Robert Scr

    July 31, 2014