Tim Cahill, with his campaign unraveling, has filed a lawsuit alleging conspiracy amongst his former top campaign staff to entice Paul Loscocco to leave the Cahill ticket and endorse Charlie Baker. Cahill also alleges that the conspiracy extended to that same staff leaking confidential Cahill campaign data to the Republican Governors Association and the campaign of Republican Charlie Baker. It is dynamite stuff, and pushes the Cahill/Baker blood feud to a whole new level. Cahill put out emails that show these consultants working directly against him while still on his payroll.
Cahill’s lawsuit and the real bad sniping between the Baker and Cahill camps has to be an unexpected relief for Governor Deval Patrick. The exposing of the nasty underside of the political operations of both Baker and Cahill leaves the Governor in the cat birds seat, free to remain on the high road and let the other two campaigns kill each other off. Baker has little time left to turn his operation around, which he must do if he is to get back in this race. A good post over at Red Mass Group by Vincent Errichetti summarizes the Baker campaign’s errors on Tim Cahill. As a matter of strategy I think Baker had it right with the initial assault on Cahill. But since that assault did what is was supposed to do the Baker camp just can’t seem to move on and let the Cahill matter alone. They seem more interested in vaporizing Cahill than in winning the election. These guys seem to believe that Deval Patrick is just going to collapse of his own accord. Not going to happen.
The statement by Tim Cahill: (From the Globe)
My campaign has uncovered a conspiracy between Washington Republican insiders and local Republicans to undermine my campaign for governor from within. It has come to our attention that former members of my staff – from the consulting firm Strategic National – intended to use confidential information they obtained while under my employment to benefit my Republican opponent. As a result of this discovery, today my campaign filed a lawsuit in Norfolk Superior Court against these individuals.
Recent events of this race have confirmed the very reason why I left the party system in the first place: Party leaders will go to any length to advance their own interests. Their selfish and questionable actions have resulted in nothing but disappointment from the voters of our Commonwealth time and time again.
While this particular incident implicates Republican leadership, both parties are guilty of this behavior. Last year, Governor Patrick used backroom deals to empower himself with the ability to choose a successor to the late Senator Kennedy. Now, Charlie Baker and his Republican cohorts have been plotting to undermine the integrity of this race in an attempt to mislead the voters.
I have spent the last 13 months running an honorable campaign by discussing the issues that matter most to Massachusetts families: creating jobs, lowering taxes and growing our economy. Now, I am discovering that I was not only fighting my opponents here at home but larger interests nationally.
On the campaign trail, Charlie Baker has been preaching that there are two sets of rules, one for regular people and one for people on Beacon Hill. Well it is clear now that Charlie lives by the very insider rules he so conveniently speaks out against.
Now that this has been uncovered, it is incumbent upon all of us to question everything my Republican opponent has said during this race. If this is the kind of underhanded, backroom tactics the Washington Republicans and Charlie Baker will use to get elected, we certainly can’t trust him to govern.
I will not let the insider actions by former members of my campaign, the Republican Governors Association or Charlie Baker dictate the remainder of this race, and I will continue to focus on the important issues facing our state.
I think the position of governor has everything to do with character. If this is the type of character my Republican opponent will use – he’s probably right in saying this is a two man race: between Deval Patrick and myself.
From the Baker Campaign:
So far as we can tell from media reports, Tim Cahill has filed a lawsuit to prevent public disclosure of e-mails that indicate his campaign may have been illegally coordinating with state employees at the Treasury. We did not receive any written internal information regarding the Cahill campaign, period, but call on the Treasurer to come clean about improper activities in his campaign rather than trying to cover them up through a lawsuit.
The emails amongst former Cahill staffers talking about ways to undemine his campaign are here.