Alcohol, Banks, Cops, Lobbyists, Fossil Fuels Have Funded Maura Healey’s Political Career

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If Massachusetts attorney general Maura Healey runs for governor as widely expected, the Democrat will have one major advantage over other candidates in the race:  money.

While Healey hasn’t announced whether or not she’ll run, she has a lot of money in her campaign account. As of November 30, 2021, she had $3,303,719.07 in it, according to the Massachusetts Office of Campaign and Political Finance. She can use it to run for governor or to run for re-election as attorney general.

Healey has been in office as state attorney general since 2015, but where did she get all of that money? Some of it came from political action committees, known as PACs. Some industries that gave her money:  alcohol, banks, lobbyists, fossil fuels, and law enforcement.

Two political action committees with direct ties to alcohol have helped fund Healey over the years:  the Beer Distributors PAC and the Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of Massachusetts PAC. The Beer Distributors PAC has given Healey five donations worth a combined $2,500 dating back to 2014. The most recent one came on December 16, 2021, for $500. The Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of Massachusetts PAC gave her a $250 donation in 2016.

That Beer Distributors PAC donation history includes a $500 payment in 2016, the same year the group donated $25,000 to the Campaign for a Safe and Healthy Massachusetts, which led the campaign to get people to vote No on Question 4 which legalized recreational marijuana for adults 21 and older in the state.

As for the banking industry, Eastern Bank has been a friend to Healey. The bank’s political action committee has given her eight donations dating back to 2014 totaling $3,250. The most recent donation came in 2021 and was for $500.

Eastern Bank has used advertising to show it supports left-of-center causes in recent times. The bank ran a commercial last year called “Stronger” where it showed support for Project Citizenship, the Transgender Club of New England, and Girls Inc, a women’s rights organization that supports legal abortion. Project Citizenship provides free legal services to immigrants in Massachusetts who want to become citizens.

Two lobbying firms that have political action committees have given Healey a few thousand dollars combined over the years. One is the Hinckley, Allen & Snyder PAC; it has gave Healey $500 per year from 2018 to 2021, a total of $2,000. The other is Nixon Peabody LLP Massachusetts PAC. It gave Healey $300 in March 2021. It was the fourth donation the PAC had made to Healey; it has given her $1,500 since 2014.

Meanwhile, the fossil fuel industry gave Healey $250 in 2018:  the Direct Energy Employee Massachusetts PAC. The company offers natural gas services in Massachusetts, a non-renewable energy source.

And when it comes to law enforcement, two political action committees have contributed to Healey’s campaign. One is the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association Inc. PAC. It has given Healey $1,500:  a $500 donation in 2015, 2016, and 2018. The other organization that gave to Healey is the Massachusetts Correction Officers Federated Union PAC; it contributed $500 to her campaign in 2016. All of those donations came after Healey was first elected in 2014.

Police unions giving money to a sitting attorney general is nothing new; police unions gave then-Massachusetts attorney general Martha Coakley $5,100 in state level contributions between 2006 (the year she got elected) and 2014 (her final full year as attorney general). Plus, her predecessor, Thomas F. Reilly, got $3,625 from police unions from 2002 to 2006, according to the Massachusetts Office of Political and Campaign Finance.

Eastern Bank, the Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of Massachusetts, Beer Distributors of Massachusetts, Direct Energy, Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association, Massachusetts Correction Officers Federated Union, Nixon Peabody, and Hinckley Allen could not be reached for comment over the weekend or on Monday this week. Nor could Healey’s campaign.


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