BOSTON – Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker said today, December 1, he will not seek a third term as Governor. The official announcement came today at 10 a.m.
Editor’s Note: This report has been updated.
Baker, a Republican, has drawn huge support in his previous campaign from individuals not registered in the Republican or Democratic parties.
Baker has a huge favorability rating, and polls in November showed he would win if he chose to run.
“After several months of discussion with our families, we have decided not to seek re-election in 2022. This was an extremely difficult decision for us. We love the work, and we especially respect and admire the people of this wonderful Commonwealth. Serving as Governor and Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts has been the most challenging and fulfilling jobs we’ve ever had. We will forever be grateful to the people of this state for giving us this great honor,” announced the Governor and the Lt. Governor this morning just after 10 a.m.
“We have all been going through an extraordinarily difficult pandemic, and the next year will be just as important, if not more important, than the past year. We have a great deal of work to do to put the pandemic behind us, keep our kids in school, and keep our communities and economy moving forward. That work cannot and should not be about politics and the next election. If we were to run, it would be a distraction that would potentially get in the way of many of the things we should be working on for everyone in Massachusetts. We want to focus on recovery, not on the grudge matches political campaigns can devolve into,” said Baker-Polito this morning.
“Coming out of this pandemic, we are acutely aware, more than ever before, about how little we can take for granted when it comes to our family, our friends, or our time on this planet. Done right, these jobs require an extraordinary amount of time and attention, and we love doing them. But we both want to be there with Lauren and Steve and our children for the moments, big and small, that our families will experience going forward,” said Baker & Polito.
“When the voters of this great Commonwealth gave us this opportunity to serve, we had plans. Lots of them. They didn’t include 30 days of snow in our first 60 days in office. Or a natural gas explosion. Or a global pandemic. But with your support, and the creativity and resilience of the people of Massachusetts, we worked through these and other unanticipated crises and events to move our state forward,” said Baker & Polito.
“We are determined to continue to put aside the partisan playbook that dominates so much of our political landscape – to form governing partnerships with our colleagues in local government, the Legislature, and the Congressional delegation. That bipartisan approach, where we listen as much as we talk, where we focus our energies on finding areas of agreement and not disagreement, and where we avoid the public sniping and grandstanding that defines much of our political discourse, allows us to make meaningful progress on many important issues,” said the current Governor and Lt. Governor.
“We’ve led the nation in battling the opioid crisis, with more to do and the resources to do it. Our energy future – the nation’s energy future – is cleaner and more cost effective because of our work on deep water offshore wind. We brought broadband to our friends and neighbors in Western Massachusetts. We’ve made historic investments in housing of all kinds, enacted a landmark law to battle our housing crisis, and anticipate using significant federal funding to level the housing playing field going forward. We secured landmark criminal justice and law enforcement reforms and successfully dealt with the decades-long stain at Bridgewater State Hospital. We have dramatically increased funding for our schools. And we cut the income tax to 5 percent and dramatically increased our Rainy Day Fund by managing the state’s fiscal affairs with discipline and care,” said Baker & Polito.
“But today is about the future. This next year needs to be about recovery, not about politics. We are grateful for the chance we have been given to serve the people of this great state and will give it our all between now and the end of 2022,” wrote Gov. Baker & Lt. Gov. Polito.
The Republican State Committee was scheduled to meet last night, but many who are loyal to Gov. Baker boycotted, so there was not a quorum.
Those loyal to the Baker-Polito camp have been saying this morning that the announcement will be that Baker will set out the 2022 campaign.