SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

September 6, 2013

'New' Charlie Baker meets the press in Swampscott

(Continued)

Baker promised a campaign revolving around issues including jobs and schools.

“I think Massachusetts can be great,” he said, pledging to do everything that can be done to ensure that people who want work can find it. He would also seek to address the “achievement gap” in schools, while working to keep neighborhoods safe and boost the economies of cities and towns.

At the press conference, he said he would be the taxpayers’ “best friend” but balked at signing a “no new taxes” pledge, something he did in 2010. That might tie the hands of an effort to revamp the state’s tax laws, he said.

On the other hand, Baker called for the repeal of a new sales tax on computer and software services and a law linking future gas tax hikes to increases in inflation.

The governor’s race will be decided in November 2014.

Patrick is not running for re-election. So far, four Democrats are in the race: state treasurer Steve Grossman, former Obama administration health care official Don Berwick, former homeland security official Juliette Kayyem and former Wellesley selectman Joseph Avellone. Baker is the first Republican to announce his candidacy.

Staff writer Alan Burke can be reached at aburke@salemnews.com.

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