Charlie Baker Endorses Geoff Diehl — And Yes, It Was In Doubt

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By Katie Lannan

As he runs at the top of the Republican party ticket in Massachusetts, Governor Charlie Baker is supporting the rest of the GOP’s statewide slate, he said Friday.

“I’ve endorsed the ticket, which I said I was going to do months ago, yeah,” Baker told reporters when asked if he backed the party’s Senate nominee, state Representative Geoff Diehl (R-Whitman).

Baker defeated conservative Springfield pastor Scott Lively in Tuesday’s primary, in which Diehl and attorney general hopeful Jay McMahon also beat their opponents. Lieutenant Gov. Karyn Polito, treasurer candidate state Representative Keiko Orrall (R-Lakeville), secretary of state candidate Anthony Amore, and auditor candidate Helen Brady each ran unopposed.

While Baker has touted his bipartisan credentials, including endorsements by Democratic lawmakers and mayors, and did not vote in the 2016 presidential election, McMahon and Diehl have more closely tied themselves to President Donald Trump.

Diehl helped lead Trump’s state campaign operation and told reporters a year and a half ago that he would “absolutely” ask the preisdent to stump for him against U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren. McMahon, in a WATD radio debate last month, said he thought his support for Trump would help him with voters.

Baker said he and Polito also “typically support a lot of” the Republican lawmakers seeking re-election. On Friday night, he will be a guest at an event for state Representative Donald Wong at the Kowloon Restaurant in Saugus.

“I think in some respects those are people we know, those are people we’ve worked with, and those are folks who can help us pursue our agenda up here on Beacon Hill,” Baker said.

Democrats hold a supermajority in both the House and Senate. With 200 legislative seats on the ballot November 6, 37 GOP lawmakers are seeking reelection, while another 13 are running for open seats and 23 are challenging incumbent Democrats.

Baker said whether he gets involved in any races where Republicans are looking to unseat Beacon Hill Democrats “depends to some extent on time.”

“We have a race, and we plan to spend most of the next 58 days focused on ours,” he said.

The general election is Tuesday, November 6 and will pit Baker and Polito against the Democratic ticket of Jay Gonzalez and Quentin Palfrey.