Sen. Ed Markey has earned my support and I enthusiastically and unequivocally endorse him for reelection to the U.S. Senate.
Our commonwealth and country stand at a precipice that will impact generations to come. We face massive, interlocked crises from deep systemic racism to the climate crisis — but Ed has never backed down in the face of such difficult odds. From leading the movement for nuclear disarmament in the 1980s to leading the current push for climate action and authoring the Green New Deal, Ed Markey has always had the visionary leadership to look ahead and lead the way.
Ed has put in the work, often out of the public eye. He has not looked for praise, but for what Massachusetts needs. He has consistently been guided by his convictions, not political convenience. If elected, he will serve his six years just as he's served since he was first elected: as a workhorse, not a show horse.
I reject the idea that we need to throw away our older adults for the newest model with a storied name. The Boston Globe put it quite succinctly in their endorsement: "Markey is not past his time; rather, his time may finally have arrived." Ed Markey has always been on the forefront of progressive change as exemplified by the Green New Deal, written in partnership with fresh young leaders. Ed reaches out and builds connections.
We need leaders who are willing to lead on brave, new solutions, not just younger faces. Ed is more than just an effective legislator. He leads the charge for justice on all fronts, inspired by the lessons he learned growing up in a blue collar Malden neighborhood, working his way through college and law school.
Sadly, Ed and I share a personal tragedy. Both of our moms suffered from Alzheimer's disease. It is a cruel disease that ravages the brain, stealing our loved ones from us long before they succumb and putting tremendous burdens on caregivers. When Ed's mother was diagnosed, he spent 12 years both serving in the House of Representatives and caring for his mother in the dining room of his childhood home. After she passed in 1998, he pushed for, and succeeded in passing, legislation that created the Congressional Bipartisan Task Force on Alzheimer's, which set a strategy to find a cure by 2025. And Ed knows that when we talk about treating this disease, we must take a two-pronged approach — focused on not only the cure, but also the care. Ed has worked throughout his career to provide the resources and support that caregivers so desperately need.
That is what Sen. Markey has done since he was first elected, continues to do today, and will do for the next six years as our senator. He legislates from a place of deep empathy and understanding. He legislates with the compassion that can only come from personal experience and struggle. He leads and delivers on sweeping national plans, but has not forgotten about the needs of our local communities.
I know that I can always count on Sen. Markey as a partner in constituent services. I'll give one recent example. During the chaos of the first days of the COVID-19 shutdowns, there were many Pittsfield families with college students overseas who were having trouble getting home. I was able to turn to Sen. Markey's office and help these families get the urgent support that they desperately needed. His staff quickly set up a system to track these students, provided important embassy information for each country, and made sure to follow up with each family. Sen. Markey has gone the extra mile for Massachusetts families time and time again and has shown me what it means to be a public servant.
Similarly, Berkshire County has been losing access to Massachusetts television stations for years, including news from our seat of state government, Boston. When the senator learned that, he sprung into action to both change the telecommunication laws and to negotiate with Charter Spectrum — he personally called the CEO and negotiated the deal from start to finish so that we could access the channels we needed and deserved. Because of Ed, during the coronavirus pandemic, the Berkshires have access to WWLP local news again at a time when information means safety.
Ed has been consistent in his vision and his care. He has delivered for Massachusetts: everything from bold, progressive policies like the Green New Deal, to getting our college students home safely during a global pandemic. He is a dependable public servant that leads from his heart and with the unwavering belief that a safer and more just future is possible. That is why we need Ed Markey in the United States Senate. I look forward to voting for and working with my friend and partner, Ed Markey.
Tricia Farley-Bouvier is the state representative for the 3rd Berkshire District.