NOTICE: - While reasonable efforts have been made to assure the accuracy of the data herein, this is NOT the official version of Senate Journal. It is published to provide information in a timely manner, but has not been proofread against the events of the session for this day. All information obtained from this source should be checked against a proofed copy of the Senate Journal.
JOURNAL OF THE SENATE.
Thursday, December 4, 2008.
Met at twelve minutes past four o’clock P.M.
The President, members, guests and employees then recited the pledge of allegiance to the flag.
There being no objection, the President recognized former Senate President Robert E. Travaglini who served from 1993-2006, serving as President from 2003-2006.
Remarks of Senate President Therese Murray.
I’d like to welcome everyone – colleagues, family and friends – to the Senate Chamber today for this special session as we salute the work of four senators who have served the Commonwealth with pride, passion and great distinction.
Today is bittersweet…
It’s good to be together again to appreciate what we have accomplished and to look forward to the new year and a new session full of challenges.
Yet that joy and anticipation is tempered by the fact that we are saying goodbye to some wonderful colleagues who have worked hard to serve their constituents and this Commonwealth - Senator Edward Augustus, Senator Pamela Resor, Senator Robert Creedon and Senator Robert Antonioni.
Each of these members has brought insight and expertise to the Senate. They have fought passionately for issues they believed would result in a brighter future for Massachusetts.
And, most importantly, they fought passionately for the future of their districts.
Before we get to our departing members, I would first like to recognize Senate Minority Leader Richard Tisei, who would like to make brief remarks. Senator Tisei.
Remarks of Senate Minority Leader Richard R. Tisei.
Traditionally, at the end of every legislative session, the Minority Leader takes a moment to offer a few remarks to the body and reflect back on the session that has just come to a close.
Because things were so rushed at the conclusion of the session back on July 31, as we sent bills back and forth to the House in an attempt to beat the clock, I never really had a chance to offer those remarks. So, today I would like to make amends. I promise to be brief.
I basically wanted to take a moment to compliment you, Madame President, on the completion of your first term as Senate President.
I’m sure everyone here would agree that you did an outstanding job presiding over this body during a very difficult and challenging time.
You came into office, succeeding arguably one of the most popular members ever to wield the President’s gavel, but you have quickly left your own imprint on this institution.
Although you had the added pressure of being the first female Senator ever to serve as President, you performed admirably under the added scrutiny and set a high standard for others to follow.
You also showed each and every member in this chamber that we made the right decision in electing you as our President.
This has not been the easiest time to serve in this chamber. Our state, as well as our nation, is in the midst of one of the worst recessions in recent memory.
During this difficult period, you have provided the strong leadership we need to get the state back on a solid financial footing.
Most importantly, you have also done a tremendous job steering the Senate through one of its darkest hours.
When two of our former colleagues stood accused of serious crimes that betrayed the public trust, you made it clear that the integrity of the Senate as an institution is far more important than any of us as individuals.
I know that all of the members appreciate the decisive action that you took to protect the reputation of this institution.
I believe that with the leadership and guidance you have displayed, the Senate will emerge from this ordeal as a stronger body and will soon be able to reclaim the public’s trust.
On a personal note, I want to thank you for the courtesy you have extended to me and to the rest of the Minority party by making sure we have a full and open debate on the issues, even if we don’t always agree on the merits of every piece of legislation that comes before us.
I look forward to that continuing in the new session.
Of course, the main reason we’re here today is to say goodbye to four of our colleagues who decided not to seek re-election this year. All of them have left a positive mark in this Chamber, and will be missed as they move on to other things.
To Senator Resor, we will always remember your quiet leadership on numerous environmental issues. Although we as a caucus did not always agree with some of the legislation you championed – particularly those bills we thought would adversely impact employers – we always knew that you were sincere in your convictions and willing to listen to other opinions. You have accomplished great things.
To Senator Augustus, I want to say it was a pleasure working with you over the last four years.
I know we had our differences on Same-Day Voter Registration and the National Popular Vote, but when all was said and done, I think we developed a mutual respect and friendship for one another that has lasted throughout these battles, and will hopefully continue as you embark on the next phase of your career.
To Senator Creedon, the Lawyers’ Caucus today is mourning the loss of one of its own. Unfortunately, even after you leave, the Lawyers’ Caucus will still outnumber the Republican Caucus, but I hope to change that someday.
From what I understand our old friend Brian Lees is ready to welcome you with open arms into a new caucus otherwise known as the superior clerks association. We wish you the very best as you begin your new career.
Last, but certainly not least, I want to recognize my good friend Senator Antonioni. With all due respect to the other Senators, I think that we will miss you the most when the new Legislature convenes next month.
For many years, I always knew I could turn to you whenever I had a question related to education, and that you and your staff would have an answer for me. Your leadership on the Education Committee has been unparalleled, and your departure is going to leave a vacuum that will be hard to fill.
Now, in fairness, I do have to say that you did have a few rather quirky bills that you championed over the years.
Who can forget the infamous piano bill, or for that matter all of your advocacy on behalf of Johnny Appleseed? I still don’t know where you got that crazy idea to let teachers in the classroom if they couldn’t pass a simple competency test after multiple tries.
In all seriousness, I have to tell you that I truly appreciate having the opportunity to work alongside you for many years. I consider you not only a colleague, but also a friend, and wish you nothing but the best in the future.
Senator Resor, Senator Creedon, Senator Augustus, and Senator Antonioni: you have all served this venerable institution, and the citizens of the Commonwealth, with honor and integrity.
I hope that when you leave here, you will each take with you many positive memories that will last a lifetime.
I also hope that none of you will ever look back with any regrets, but instead will take comfort in knowing that you have helped to enrich the lives of all of your colleagues, both past and present, and have set a high standard of public service that we can all emulate.
Remarks of Senate President Therese Murray.
Thank you Senator Tisei. And now on to our friend and colleague, Senator Edward Augustus.
Senator Augustus dedicated himself to public service early on, becoming the youngest person to serve on the Worcester School Committee at age 24.
As he gained more experience in the Department of Education and as chief of staff for Congressman James McGovern, he became a champion of education and was elected to represent the Second Worcester District in 2004.
During his time in the Senate, he fought hard to boost state aid for education and make the funding formula more equitable, and he was also determined to reduce the number of high school drop-outs in Massachusetts– important work that the Senate will continue.
Now, I would like to ask Senate President Pro Tem Stanley Rosenberg to read a letter from Senator Augustus, who unfortunately could not be with us today.
Senate President Pro Tem Stanley Rosenberg read the following communication.
COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
STATE HOUSE, BOSTON 02133-1053
Dear Madam President, Distinguished Colleagues, Staff, Assembled Guests and Friends:
I would like to profoundly thank you, in a heartfelt way, for the opportunity to have served in the Massachusetts Senate.
I regret that another commitment today prevents me from being with you as the Senate recognizes those who will not be returning to the 186th General Court in January.
I want to join with you in extending my sincere appreciation for the friendship of Senators Antonioni, Creedon, and Resor. The steps forward our state has made in education, criminal justice and environmental policy are a testament to their talent and abilities. They should be truly proud of all they have done to improve the quality of life for millions of Massachusetts citizens. Their considerable experience in this Chamber will be greatly missed.
I would like to thank my family, my mother Dolores, my sister Heather, and my niece Michelle. I want to thank them for their loving and unwavering support from that very first day nearly 20 years ago when I announced my intention to run for the Worcester School Committee until today.
I thank my Staff. It is a cliche to say that a Senator is only as good as his staff. But I am privileged to have been associated with a capable and loyal staff who served me, this body, my district and our Commonwealth with intelligence, great professionalism, and diligence.
I thank the many people who have made each and every day of my service in the State House a truly memorable and enjoyable experience: the Clerk and his staff, the Counsel’s staff, and the staffs of each and every Senator, the Court Officers, the Rangers, the Pages, and the Personnel, Legislative Education and Business Offices.
I especially thank the people of the Second Worcester District who twice put their trust in me and gave me the extraordinary opportunity to serve as their voice on Beacon Hill.
I thank my colleagues for their friendship and their loyalty. I have learned something from each and every one of you. And for that I will forever be grateful.
When I ran for the Senate four years ago, I told the voters that I would be a full-time Senator, but I did not expect to serve forever. I ran for the Senate because I wanted to improve the quality of life for working families, to help make our Commonwealth a more inclusive and just place for each and every one of her citizens, and to help Central Massachusetts get the rightful recognition and attention it deserves.
I am proud that in a relatively short time, we achieved many of those goals.
During my tenure, we recapitalized and expanded the brownfields program, which helps communities like my hometown of Worcester get contaminated sites cleaned up, revitalized and put back on the tax rolls. We passed legislation creating a Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention and Outreach Program under the auspices of the Department of Public Health. We worked to reduce hunger by providing additional funding to the Department of Transitional Assistance, which resulted in Massachusetts jumping from 50 in the nation in eligible food stamp participation to 18th — one of the largest gains in the country.
We started a new public library grant program that provides state matching grants to public library foundations which raise private funds to sustain library operations – a program so critical in an era of looming municipal budget reductions. We passed dropout recovery and prevention legislation to develop a system of targeted early intervention that will reduce dropout rates and help teens stay on the path to graduation. And we stood up for human rights and against genocide by requiring the Commonwealth to divest its pension investments from companies that do business with the homicidal regime in Darfur.
Central Massachusetts is now finally getting its due, from historic investments in downtown development in Worcester and the life sciences at the University of Massachusetts Medical School to expanded commuter rail on the Worcester Line to reopened Central Massachusetts offices of the Chief Medical Examiner and the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination. With a Lt. Governor from Worcester and my capable colleagues Senators Chandler and Brewer in leadership positions in the Senate, I have no doubt that the future for Central Massachusetts is very bright.
But perhaps more than any legislative achievement, I am most proud of the way that men and women of goodwill from both sides of the aisle came together last May to defeat the proposed constitutional amendment that would have rescinded equal marriage in the Commonwealth. On that day, Massachusetts reaffirmed its historic role as the conscience of our nation. We joined arms and wrote a new chapter in our unending journey to form a more perfect union. I leave office with great pride and comfort in the knowledge that Massachusetts leads the world in fostering a more inclusive, tolerant, and just society.
So it is with heartfelt gratitude to the people of the Second Worcester District, and with great respect and admiration for my colleagues, I say farewell and look to the future of our Commonwealth and our nation with great optimism, with hope and anticipation.
With Best Wishes,
EDWARD M. AUGUSTUS, Jr.,
On motion of Mr. Rosenberg the above remarks and communication were ordered printed in the Journal of the Senate.
Remarks of Senate President Therese Murray.
Thank you, Senator Rosenberg. ... And now let’s move on to our other departing members who are here in the Chamber today.
We all know about Senator Pam Resor’s record and leadership on environmental issues. From the very beginning, her passion and commitment to protect the public was clear ...
When she learned that a manufacturing company was polluting the water supply in her hometown of Acton, and that nothing was getting done to stop it, she decided to run for office.
Her first stop was to serve on the board of health. But, dissatisfied with the board’s lack of authority, she ran for an open seat on the Board of Selectmen in 1981 and was the top vote-getter.
As a selectwoman, she had more influence in solving the pollution issue in her town.
She also negotiated other important issues such as the mandated Proposition 2½ budget cuts, ensuring that essential services and schools did not bear the full brunt.
But it was her commitment to the environment that led her to a job as Director of the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissioners, and then onto the highest levels of state government.
As a legislator, she has been instrumental in getting key environmental legislation passed – from the handling of hazardous waste and Brownfields legislation to land preservation, clean energy and ocean management.
While Senator Resor is known for her environmental advocacy, her accomplishments on Beacon Hill are far reaching.
She worked to help small businesses through the Commonwealth Fund;
She fought for passage of the Sexual Harassment Education in the Workplace Act; and led the charge to pass the anti-stalking statute, “Sandy’s Law”.
Senator Resor ... we’re going to miss you. We’re going to miss your passion and expertise, and your kind, gentle demeanor.
Remarks of Senator Harriette L. Chandler.
It is truly an honor to be here today to say a few words about my dear friend Pam Resor.
Senator Resor is a very special person to me, and has been a remarkable legislator. I have had the pleasure of serving with her in the House and the Senate. We share a town together, Northborough, and we also sit side-by-side here in the Chamber.
And for that I am very fortunate, for I know I can always turn to Pam and ask, “What are we doing right now?” and she will almost always have the answer.
But seriously, throughout her career she has demonstrated a quiet, courageous and determined style of leadership that has served as an example — for me and all of us — of how to do this job, and how to do it right.
I came across a quote recently that I think truly conveys this:
“Sincerity and competence is a strong combination. In politics, it is everything”.
To me that is Pam, and it is a key reason why she has been such as success as both a policy-maker, and a politician.
Of course, her legacy will in large part be the extraordinary contributions she has made in making Massachusetts a leader in protecting our environment and natural resources.
Her interest in the subject was inspired when she discovered that W. R. Grace was polluting her neighbors’ water supply, and she subsequently found out first-hand how difficult it was to get the town and state elected officials to work to solve the problem.
Quietly determined to change that process, she ran for selectman, and later state representative and state senator.
Since her arrival here on Beacon Hill, she has been an advocate for environmental issues far and wide, from strengthening the hazardous waste law and passing “Brownfield’s” legislation, to protecting our water supplies and preserving open space.
But I believe that it is here in this body and in this chamber, as the 24th woman to serve in the Massachusetts Senate, that Pam has truly made her mark.
The culmination of her efforts came this past session, when she was a leader in helping pass what is almost certainly the most ambitious and effective series of environmental laws and funding initiatives that the Legislature has ever seen.
The Green Communities Act, the Greenhouse Gas Initiative, the Global Warming Solutions Act, the Safer Alternatives legislation and the Environmental Bond Bill were all impacted by her leadership.
I truly believe the 2007-2008 session will go down as a turning point in the history of our state and the protection of its environment and natural resources, and I believe just as strongly that it simply would not have happened without Pam Resor sitting as Chair of the Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture.
But Senator Resor’s accomplishments go far beyond that.
Her service on the Board of Selectmen taught her the fiscal realities of sound budgeting.
She has led on the issue of Special Education costs and its impact on our cities and towns, numerous economic development initiatives, and legislation to protect the health and safety of women and families.
She has not always taken the popular or majority stand on issues, sometimes hers has been almost the lone vote, but she has always tried to take what she believes to be the morally right vote.
That broad array of achievements is why she has been so frequently honored for her service, from diverse groups such as the MSPCA, Jane Doe Inc, the Massachusetts Municipal Association, the Boys and Girls Clubs, and of course MA Audubon and the Sierra Club.
And that I can assure you is a much abbreviated list.
She is conscientious and committed to her district, and even though she and I only have one precinct in the one town we share, Northborough gets as much attention from her as it does from me.
Pam’s interests outside of public policy are just as interesting and diverse. For example, she and her husband have traveled around the world with a singing group to express and share their love of music.
She is an amateur botanist, and leads wildflower walks, and collects antique guides to native flora.
Quite simply, she is a remarkable woman, who will truly be missed by all of us, by her constituents, and in fact the entire Commonwealth.
Let me conclude with two additional quotes that I believe speak to Senator Resor’s legacy
First, from Audubon:
“A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his father, but borrowed from his children,” — Audubon.
Second, from Jacques Yves Cousteau:
“Since the beginning, each generation has fought nature. Now in the lifespan of a single generation, we must turn around 180 degrees and become the protector of nature,” — Jacques Yves Cousteau.
Pam Resor has been at the forefront of ensuring our children inherit a safe and clean environment, and has been leading that 180 degree turn.
I am proud to have been able to serve with her, and to learn from her, but I am most proud to be able to call her my friend.
Thank you Senator Resor for your extraordinary career of leadership and service on behalf of your Middlesex and Worcester District constituents, and the people of Massachusetts.
Remarks of Senate President Pro Tern Stanley C. Rosenberg.
Thank you very much Madam President.
I was honored and very grateful when I got the call from Senator Resor, given the many friends she has in the chamber, asking me to deliver some remarks for this occasion.
Much has been said about Senator Resor already, and I concur with those remarks and hope to add some of my own.
I will begin with the fourth quote of the evening:
“In every deliberation we must consider the impact on the seventh generation...even if it requires having skin as thick as the bark of a pine.”
That, of course, is the Great Law of the Iroquois. That statement formed one of the foundations of the Iroquois Confederacy, the union of six Native American nations, who, some 800 years ago, created what is now the oldest participatory democracy. We have the privilege of serving in the oldest continuing legislative body.
Today, we celebrate the career of Senator Resor and those senators who part from us today for other opportunities after very distinguished careers in this body and in service to their districts.
I thought this quote from the Iroquois people was particularly relevant for Senator Resor. Her career has been focused on two things in particular. First, is her commitment to the seventh generation. As demonstrated by her work for the environment and many other issues, Sen. Resor has labored to ensure sound policy for future generation, not just that of today. Second, she has shown she has the courage and the ability to stand up to power forces and powerful people, doing so in a very measured, soft-spoke, but nonetheless very powerful and effective way. This was demonstrated in her efforts to defend her community from corporate entities that were polluting her community. She took on the likes of W.R. Grace headfirst, and throughout her dealings, worked in a very strong and focused way.
Sen. Resor has shown a strong commitment to her community throughout her career. She ran for office, and while not successful every time, was persistent. She succeeded in serving effectively in tumultuous bodies, and always finding the right path. Senator Resor did it with grace.
She has shown that she has a strong moral compass, that she possesses and stands by a set of core values, and that she exhibits great wisdom in her judgments.
She has proven that you don’t have to be the loudest voice in the room to be the most persuasive. By offering a comment here or there and voting your conscience, you can do what is necessary and right, even if it is going against the grain.
Senator Resor has many times led her district on issues. We understand, as elected officials, that our actions and votes should reflect the needs and desires of the people of our districts. But there are times when we need to get out in front of our constituents and lead on important issues. Those are times when we know we made the right vote, but have to labor at home to make sure that perception is there.
Sen. Resor was often in front of her district. She took tough votes, then went home and educated voters, and many times have them turn around in their thinking. Even though she wasn’t able to convince everyone on every issue, the people of her district still continued to support her and send her back to the Senate. She has been able to win election after election, and still continue to take tough votes. This is because people see her as a thoughtful person who saw something they miss, and they support her because they know they can trust her.
In her dealing with the WR Grace issue, Senator Resor demonstrated that she needed to be here in the State House, fighting for the people of her district. Her actions proved that she needed to be here over and over again. And there is no doubt that her efforts made an enormous impact for the people of the Commonwealth. I have been serving in this body since the 1980’s, and there is no question or doubt that this was the most significant session for the environment in the last quarter century. You came into this building with a strong passion for the environment, and aspired to be Chair of that Committee. And you accomplished that goal, leading us through this significant year in addressing issues such as global warming and our carbon footprint.
I join all my colleagues in the admiration of Senator Resor. You’ve earned our respect, admiration and friendship.
You will leave this body known as the honorable Pam Resor. In this day and age, that is something that is precious. You came here with that title simply by gaining it through an election. But you will hold it for life because of your great deeds and words. You have shown yourself to be truly honorable: a person of integrity, honor, and intelligence who has served the people of the Commonwealth with grace.
We wish you the best, and hope your future endeavors will find you doing things that bring you here and into contact with us over the course of the years.
Remarks of Senator Pamela P. Resor.
A. big ‘thank you’ to the voters of the Middlesex and Worcester District who gave me this opportunity by supporting their first woman senator. They came out for me in six contested elections (one in which the former governor got involved.) Expressions of their appreciation over the past few months have been truly rewarding.
With deference to former Senate President Travaglini, who first appointed me to Chair the Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture, I want to express my great pride in having the good fortune to serve under the first woman president of the Massachusetts Senate. Madame President, your support for your members and for their priorities has been exceptional. The environmental successes of this past session would not have been possible were it not for your leadership and that of the Chair of Ways and Means, Senator Panagiotakos —the ‘dynamic duo’ of the Senate.
And I appreciate all the assistance from your terrific staff. This has been a great session and I thank all of the members for making it so productive. Colleagues I have worked with over my eighteen years in the legislature have made this experience most memorable. I will not forget your many kindnesses.
And then there are all the people who really make this all work. The Senate Counsel and staff who help us accomplish what we want to do within the legal confines. The Senate Clerk and staff who keep track of the procedures and are so helpful in suggesting ways to accomplish our goals. And the Court officers who are always most gracious and make our time here in the chamber so pleasant.... and the DCR. Rangers with their friendly greetings... and the many other state house employees... thank you all for your assistance throughout these eighteen years.
The most essential and deserving group that I owe much gratitude and credit are those who have served on my staff. I want to especially thank Elizabeth Moroney who served as my aid my first years in the House and then came back to serve as Chief of Staff in my Senate office and Shelly MacNeill who followed in her footsteps on both the House and Senate side. Kathy Logue has been my scheduler and receptionist for nine years. And Peggy Ayres, who has made my District Office a true community service center. A big thank you to Sally Schnitzer, Shannon Ames and Mary Michelman who brought their many skills as my environmental and legislative experts. And Sue Martin who has solved so many constituent problems and been a good listener to all who called. Thank you Katy Quinn who worked in the office and then ran my campaign so skillfully. There have been many interns throughout the years, some like Rose Adams who stayed on as excellent staff. All have done so much more than their ‘job’, by supporting each other as a team... TEAM RESOR!
This past session was the only time in my eighteen years to serve under a Democratic administration. I have always had good experiences with the Secretary and Commissioners in EOEEA, especially the years that my former Senator Bob Durand served. However, this has been a great session and the willingness of this administration, Governor Patrick, Secretary Bowles and the Commissioners to work with us has been most appreciated.
The house chair of the Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources, and Agriculture, Representative Smizik has shared my interest in accomplishing as much as possible in this session and with great help from excellent staff we have been rewarded with results. I know there are a number of items on his agenda awaiting the next session and I hope it is even more productive.
I cannot give enough credit to the environmental groups and their advocates. They are always keeping our feet to the fire, but they are also always ready to assist us with information and support.
Middlesex and Worcester has been a great District to represent and I have had the pleasure of working with 14 communities and their hard working administrators, boards, and community organizations. The election of the first woman, Mayor Nancy Stevens in Marlborough brought a good friend and effective administrator to meet the challenges of a growing city. Working together with a group of eleven (yes 11 !) state representatives we have accomplished most of the district’s local initiatives. I know my successor, Senator elect Jamie Eldridge will carry on these efforts for the region.
Finally, I wish to offer you some thoughts, not so much advice as observations and an ongoing plea for the environment.
You are facing many challenges in the next few years. It seems that when revenues are limited the environmental budget gets hit the hardest. We have made progress in our efforts to begin reducing our carbon footprint and to take a national leadership role in meeting the challenges of global climate change.
You are all called to be stewards of the resources of this Commonwealth. We have fantastic rivers, beaches, parks and forests. We have a beautiful coast and the Cape and Islands. We have the incredible Berkshire region and its diversity. You are each proud and protective of your own resources as proven by your DCR earmarks. Please do everything needed to protect resources throughout Massachusetts, make it a truly green commonwealth!
THANK YOU ALL!
Remarks of Senate President Therese Murray.
What can I say about Senator Creedon? He’s sailing off into the sunset of county government, but we’re going to miss his experience and leadership as chairman of the Judiciary Committee; and we’re going to miss that sharp wit and humor of his too.
Not only did he bring great passion to the Senate, but he always made us laugh. And that’s important in this business ... not to take yourself too seriously, and being able to laugh.
Bob was a tireless worker for his constituents and his beloved hometown of Brockton, fighting for economic growth and the viability of downtown business districts.
And Bob was a real champion of the people too.
During his career as senator, he helped families save their homes from creditors through reforms to the Homestead Act; he fought for the rights and dignity of the sick and elderly through legislation that protected their assets; and he was instrumental in passing legislation that strengthened laws to punish sexual predators.
Bob Creedon got a lot done without a lot of fanfare or headlines, but he certainly had fans here in the State House and in the public.
We’re going to miss you, Bob.
Remarks of Senator Richard T. Moore.
When we bid farewell to our colleagues there are often mixed emotions, the departing senators have become our friends who’ve shared with us the triumphs and tragedies of public service. Those we honor today are leaving on their own terms and, for that, we express our happiness, but we will miss them nevertheless.
The Senator from Brockton, he of the “old school,” asked both Senator Mike Morrissey and me to say a few words on his behalf, primarily because our service in the Legislature goes almost as far back as his own. He thinks we’re old enough in length of service to understand his archaic expressions often spiced with a little Latin from Seneca added to impress Harvard grads like Tom Birmingham.
As our friend and colleague Bob Creedon leaves the Senate, we can all say “Thanks for the memories.” Now we’re not talking about memories of his actions or statements – since most of the memorable ones he only said in Caucus. I’m talking about the memories he shared of days gone by. How many times has he regaled us with stories of his experiences in the House that appear through the mist of time and space like the ghost of sessions past having, at best, only the most remote connection to the topic under discussion?
We’ve all heard the oft-repeated highlights (or low lights) of his left-leaning career in the House from 1969 to 1972. “Left-leaning,” of course, is a euphemism for the “Brockton Bolshevik” as he was known in those days. During one of his more memorable speeches on the House floor, and there were many, was when he referred to Governor Frank Sargent as “the Clown in the Corner Office.” Bob’s father took Bob to the wood shed on that one for showing such disrespect to the office of Governor. In another speech, Bob is reported to have said “why do we need to do something for posterity? What has posterity ever done for us?”
However, Bob learned enough to offer his brother, Michael, some advice when Mike entered the House of Representatives...He told Mike, “if you want to get ahead you should vote exactly opposite the way I voted.” Following that sage advice, Mike quickly rose to Chair of House Third Reading, then House Chair of Ways and Means before moving to the Senate.
Bob Creedon never had the benefit of a three-second delay in those days, and that’s one thing that hasn’t changed. He still has a tendency to say whatever comes from his mouth as the spirit moves him to opine or recall some obscure story from the political graveyard.
You know when Bob enters a Senate Caucus! It’s like the entry of the ghost of Christmas past, rattling the chains he forged in the House of Representatives, and moaning about the days when legislators had — and used — “real power!”
We know, for example, that when he refers to “prorogation,” he is not talking about propagation, irrigation, litigation, or like terms, but the end of the two-year legislative session earlier than the midnight before the next term begins.
We also know — because we served in the House at the time - that when he says “House cut,” he is not talking about an unfriendly comment about the lower branch, or the casino’s share of the pot, or the representatives’ share of any credit or blame, but he’s referring to the time when the House was reduced from 240 to 160 members.
Mike Morrissey and I also understand that Bob’s admiration of the practice of “scheduling” does not refer to his appointments, but to a procedure where the Ways and Means chairs used to be able to control all of the positions in state government. How many times, we’ve heard Bob’s story of Senator Blackie Burke of Brockton, then the Senate Ways and Means chair in the 1970’s who eliminated the position of Director of Admissions of a state college because he was displeased with the then occupant of that post. Oh, as Bob would say, “those were the good old days!”
Bob’s idea of “transparency” in government is to allow senators to really table any matter that they believe is unworthy of debate and vote and to leave the matter tabled indefinitely. This would provide transparency, Bob says, because it would appear in the session calendar under the heading “tabled,” for all to see.
The history books tell us that in 1972, Bob Creedon decided he was ready for promotion to the Senate and the only one who stood in his way was a woman named, Anna Buckley. That election, when he vaguely recalls he lost by “approximately 73 votes” was Bob’s first retirement from the Legislature. However, Bob harbored no ill feelings toward the people of the Senate district. “Time has eroded any bitterness,” he once told me. Then he added, “Those rotten people voted against me.”
In the intervening years, brother Michael, now Judge Creedon represented Brockton in the House and later, the Senate. During that time, Bob, and his family, polished their legal resumes building a legal practice. It’s well known that when you’re in trouble, your advised to get a lawyer who knows the law, however, if you can’t find a lawyer who knows the law, find one who knows the judge. Now we’re not sure what kind of lawyer Bob Creedon has become during that long period of wandering in the legal desert, but it’s often been said around Brockton that if you want to get anything done in the court, go see a Creedon!” Of course, where Bob’s headed, that will be even more true in Plymouth County.
It’s obvious that Bob changed with the maturity of years when he entered the Senate in 1997 after the nearly three decades sabbatical! No longer the wild-eyed, social planning, liberal do-gooder of those days in the House, Bob Creedon today possesses an irrepressible sense of humor that enables him to recognize the ridiculous and to hold things in true perspective. He tells ambitious local officials who might think about running for office to wait, the Senate is a six year term. That way he avoids opposition! He tells constituents to take their problems to a State Rep. since he’s busy with loftier concerns like confirming Supreme Court justices and approving nuclear test ban treaties.
These days, his favorite vote is, as any graduate of Boston College and BC Law would say, one that is “Viva Voce.” Or to the non-Jesuit educated among us, a “voice vote!”
His favorite caucus is the closed-door “chicken caucus,” which he chaired.
His favorite recess is when there’s time to visit Scollay Square Restaurant to conduct some research or to offer sage legal advice to Senator Morrissey on the recent court decision about out of state wine shipments.
The legendary Blue Man Group web site posts some interesting comments about our departing colleague, but only one that I will quote, and it was obviously written by one of the Bob’s satisfied clients …contains a good deal of insight.
“Bummer. Bob Creedon is a good guy and above all else does what a reasonable and prudent person would do.”
“He uses common sense. That clerk of courts job is probably not what you think it is. It is an elected position. The clerk of the superior court. It is make believe. There is essentially zero responsibility. I have no idea what a bright and effective legislator like Bob Creedon wants with a job like this unless he just wants to retire with pay. The office of the clerk of courts in Plymouth County used to be in a cubby hole down at Plymouth District Court. Now they have a new court house adjacent to Jordan Hospital to hide in. It really is a loss for the Senate. Creedon really was an astute and effective legislative leader that let common sense prevail.”
There’s a story about Bob and his family that, I think, captures the essence of Bob Creedon, the husband, father, and grandfather and senator. Now, I haven’t been able to research it’s factual origins, but it seems to fit the circumstances and could very well be true. It seems that Bob and Gerry Creedon’s son, Robert III, (How’d you like to have carry that cross?) Well, when young Rob was a student at St. Casimir’s in Brockton, he was asked during class by one of the nuns, “Who knocked down the Walls of Jericho?” Young Rob Creedon said, “It wasn’t me!” Shocked at the answer, the nun spoke with Bob’s wife, Geraldine, and her response was, “If my Robbie said it wasn’t him, it wasn’t him!” Still dismayed by that comment, the nun persisted and called Attorney Bob Creedon at his law office. She told him what Rob III said, and what Gerry said. Bob Creedon paused for a minute and said, “Look, Sister, I don’t want any trouble. Just how much did that wall cost?”
Seriously, Bob Creedon is the consummate public servant and a good friend to the members of the Senate, I’ll miss him as a friend. We’re not likely to see the likes of him again...except when the Plymouth Clerk’s budget is under review. On the other hand, there are a lot more Creedon’s where he came from! Bob Creedon’s career in the House and Senate has given all of us a new understanding of the phrase that hangs over the Senate President’s chair, “God Save the Commonwealth of Massachusetts!”
Remarks of Senator Michael W. Morrissey.
Thank you, Madam President. I’m reminded that we do take this job serious, but in light of that the gentleman and I who are speaking on behalf of our good friend in honor to say a couple of words we’ll probably be a little bit lighter than most people today.
You know I was trying to think of what to say and most of the stuff I thought about I can’t repeat. And so, some of you have heard some of his speeches, that famous Roman speech, and some of you know about that or those of you that were standing, you know who our press hound, the gentleman from Brockton is, and how much he likes to talk to the press; and so we’re standing here wondering if his rare interview is, Madame President, in fact about you. And so we were all shocked that he was actually speaking to the press. And when he opened his mouth, and we heard what he had to say, which I still can’t repeat, is that I’ve never seen people run faster; the gentleman from East Boston, the gentleman from Lynn, the gentleman from South Boston, and I all decided it was time to leave because we didn’t see or hear anything he said after the first five words. And so we thought that was enough and that now we know why he didn’t talk to the press. So, having said that I’ve had some great times with the gentleman from Brockton and Senator Moore is correct, he is the Senate’s sommelier so I feel bad for those who have to pick out their own wines now, you’re on your own. So, although we are trying to get him a teaching job at a local law school; sorry about that, Gerry. So he can come up and see us every once in a while for six o’clock class and hold office hours at five o’clock. So, we hope that some of us may, you know, take advantage of the office hours. Now, having said that, and looking at the little history, you know, Bob Creedon and Dick Moore is right, it is a throwback. He is a person who has taught us all, why speak when you can nod, why nod when you can wink; of course, why say anything when you already have it in the budget. So, hopefully that no one has ever sent him an email recently, because it is going to take him months to empty out the computer because they are all unopened, he hasn’t figured out how to turn it on yet. Now, I’ve always been shocked, and I like the phone, and I’ve talked to him on more than one occasion, and usually wake him up and make sure he’s moving. And so, the only time you can get him is at home in the morning. And so, or at least until May answer the phone, but I was quite surprised that he actually got a cell phone, because it goes back to the story in the last administration when Governor Romney called up and asked everybody for their cell phone numbers just in case they had to contact you in an emergency. And when they asked Bob Creedon, “could we have your cell phone number?” the answer was “do you know how to read smoke signals?” And so, having said that, he could never have been bothered because he didn’t want one out in the garden, didn’t want one down on the Cape, he didn’t want one in the car, and he didn’t want a cell phone. So finally I said to him, and this was talking about technological advancement, he does have a cell phone, he probably doesn’t have it on him, or know how to turn it on, but he does have one. So I said to him, “how did you come by getting a cell phone?” And he said, “It was quite easy, I wasn’t involved in the decision-making process.” And he usually isn’t, so Gerry gave it to him, which is no small reason why Gerry is sitting so close to the two of us so, in case we do act up.. But as the case may be, that I did want to say that, and I said, “How’s the cell phone use going?” and he says, “Oh, great!”, he says, “I got six calls in six months.” I said, “Really?” I said, “That’s all?” He says, “Well I don’t know the number”, he said, “The only people that know it are you and Gerry; you’re four, she’s two.” And so, one of these days I will give out the phone number, if you don’t return my calls when you go to court, because I actually will have the honor to continue to work with him as he goes to the courts and I could think of no better person to become the Superior Court Clerk. But having said that, I did have a little scrapbook that some of you have in front of your desk and if you ever wanted to know what Bob Creedon looked like with hair you can see what that says, and if you read the last part of that article, it’s stuff like that you never see in the press anymore.
And then finally, one of my favorites was, Bob Creedon, of course, he’s gone from what was “New breed takes over with Creedon election” to “Bob Creedon caved on crucial issues!” Now, some of you remember the issue about the race tracks, so the vote was like 39 to nothing, and he knew he was right, but everybody was voting the other way. And so, he looked at me, as we usually have a discussion here and there. I said, “Bob, it’s very simple. You can either vote with the constitution and do what you think is right or you can vote with God.” He voted with God, and so of course that didn’t help him in the article, but my favorite stories about Bob debating an issue, involved the former Senate Minority Leader. When he got up on an issue and he started talking, so eloquently as he could and Brian Lees came over to him, put a piece of paper in front of him that said, you’re on the wrong side of the issue; and he’s trying to get his attention. Without missing a beat, and some of you remember this, he says, “But on the other hand there’s an awful lot of reasons why you should think about voting the other way.” And so, just like that there are two sides to every issue and now I am on the other side.
And finally you have in front of you, one of my all time favorite political cartoons, and the honoree will be happy to sign the picture later, but he is right, they did miss some of the relatives. And in keeping this kind of light, I will not do this some justice, but his brother actually gave one of the finer speeches, as many of us know, when he did leave, and being a little pressed for some time, and being the little lost steer this year, instead of ten reasons why it’s time for Creedon to leave, I have eight additional reasons why it’s time for Bob Creedon to leave.
8. You know it’s time to go when you read in the newspaper that your wife is thinking about running for your seat.
7. You know it’s time to go and head south when people start to pay attention to some of Senator Baddour’s ideas to put tolls on the southeast expressway and Route 24.
6. Its time to go when you can actually go and get a job that you always dreamed of, maybe not this time in his life, but it’s a job that he’s always coveted. So it’s about time that he could leave to go to the job that he has referred to as the “velvet coffin”.
5. Its time to leave when you can claim to be the leader of the Green Movement in Brockton by walking from your house on West Elm Street to the courthouse on Belmont Street.
4. Its time to leave when you can make more money scheduling cases for other people than your own.
3. Its time to leave when after lying, as the gentleman from Worcester pointed out, for so many years to your constituents that you had a six year term like Ted Kennedy, then you can finally leave and get one.
2. You know when it’s time to start to think about leaving when you start thinking, “Darn, there just aren’t enough Creedon’s in the court system.”
And the number one reason to think about leaving is when they start talking about changing the name of the 21st Amendment to the 5th Amendment; it’s time to leave and get a new job!
Remarks of Senator Robert S. Creedon, Jr.
Thank you Madam President. Some of the speakers are correct; I tended to, in this stage of my life, to give most of my speeches in the caucus, for many reasons. Actually, most of my speeches are in the morning when I’m shaving and ranting and raging; and Geraldine tells me to get it out of your system now. I remember at the last Constitutional Convention, she said, ‘The Constitutional Convention will not be interested in getting a lecture from you on Constitutional law.’ Well, I thought they might be, but I had followed her good advice.
As Michael correctly pointed out, my dear wife, the love of my life, is right behind here so I have to watch what I say now. She reminds me that she still remains a member of the House.
I’m also happy to have with my daughter Jenna, and her husband Brian, both lawyers in the city of Boston, my son Rob, who carries my name proudly, and his wife Nora.
I played a lot of sports but I was only adequate. But my son, he’s a lot better than I am. But this sport, I don’t think he’d be interested in this kind of work, but who knows.
Because of my dear friend, I got a copy of my brother’s speech when he left, doing the David Letterman thing. I hadn’t heard it nor had I seen it before. My brother Michael, there were 5 of us, I’m the oldest, and he’s the middle brother. And he and the youngest brother are both biology and chemistry majors, and the other 3 of us were English and government courses. And Michael in his speech to the Senate, had to make reference that Political Science was neither political nor a science. And he made a little jab at the fact that those folks from my generation, again, I’m the oldest one, I came into politics kind of with an idealistic bend, having followed the career of John Kennedy, and of course, the Vietnam War kind politicized things.
I came in with that kind of view. In fact, last night, I looked at my bird book from 1969. Believe it or not, and Ben that was over here just a minute ago, I was going to ask him but he just left, the song I would have them play for me now was, ‘Hey General Custa, I don’t wanna go.’ Which I think was Sam, the Bam and the Farells, but only Ben would know the answer to that. Sam the Sham and the Farrell’s. But when I came in here, which was in the House of 69, six of the members in the bird books were born in the late 1800s. Our number one issue, and you’re going to find this hard to believe, and I know one of the reason I don’t want to leave. Mike gave 10 reasons, I can give you many reasons I don’t want to leave. You are blessed with, as I call them, the 2 Anthonys, the 2 Steves, and Ben. And they kept me tuned in to what life was like in decades beneath mine. Many decades beneath mine.
When I got in here, I sat in the third division, and it was the gentleman from Mission Hill, who was born in 1899 and his occupation is that he was a raw cotton broker, whatever that is, maybe there’s cooked cotton, I don’t know. But we were voting and the younger folks will see this with some amazement, but we were voting on an issue dealing with contraception. I had voted differently than he had, there being about 50 years between us. I was the youngest member in the 240 member House. And as he walked up the aisle and looked at me over those glasses, you know the ones you can look over the peek from the top. He looked at me and said, young man, ‘it’s still a mortal sin.’ Good lord, I know I’d make some bad votes, but not commit a mortal sin.
As a member of the House of Representatives, I went back to some of my....I got accused of being the leader of the young communist league in those days. Things have changed in some regards and they haven’t in others. Now there’s an ad I used, when I ran for state rep. I took out of the Globe, August 26, 1968 that said ‘Beacon Hill lobbyists say they got $305,000.’ That’s all the lobbyist, for the whole year. Nowadays, that’ll be a bad year for one of the lobbyist. I think Billy Galvin told me they have something like 70 million. And I have a bunch more of these ads that I ran, one was the House cuts, we’d reduce the House from 240 to 160, which I thought was a great idea, until as I got in there, it turned out that was one of the worst votes I ever made in my life. Essentially, it reduced a very democratic Representative body into a kind of a larger version of what the Senate was. The verb was, ‘was’. Because indeed, in those days, I would rant and rave against the Senate. There was a play that was very popular then, it was entitled ‘The Best Little Brothel in Texas.’ And I took it upon myself to stand up often in time to look back, I wish I have the opportunity to withdraw many of these statements that I made in life but I can’t do it. I said one of the best little clears throat in Massachusetts is on the other side of this building, it’s called the Massachusetts Senate. And of course, those things got in the paper in those days. I want to thank you Madame President for scheduling this at 4 o’clock, because I think the press goes to bed at 3 o’clock.
When I came in here 12 years ago, Michael is correct. There was an issue that dealt with; I believe it’s called the freedom of religion bill. And so, I’ve had the habit of, having developed it when I was a House member, of actually reading the bill. You know, my staff, they’re here today with me. Some of the oldest staff members of the state. One of the requirements of being a staff member is you have to serve with me in the Brockton City Council, which means, you’re retired and this is your second job.
There were 2 ladies sitting right up there, and they had been fired by the fellow that owns Raynham\Taunton dog tracks for not agreeing to work on Christmas Eve. That’s fine. And there were stories, so I happen to read the bill, and I said to Michael, “Michael, this thing is patently unconstitutional.” I said, ‘I have a case note from the Harvard Law Review where they state here, look at it. This is not constitutional and it’s ex post facto. Here are the positions of the corporate section of the MassBar and the labor section, 2 disparate sections, both saying this is bad news. And Michael said to me, ‘Well, it’s now 38 to 0, do you want to be on the side of the Constitution, or to the side of God. So exercising great courage and fortitude, I went with his nibs, who by the way has a habit of putting stuff out like that. He put one out recently on wine. About 2 years ago, I said, Mike, being a state commerce clause. If they take this to court, this is going down the tubes. And what was it? Two weeks ago it went down the tubes. It was declared to be unconstitutional. I always thought it was a good idea when you raise your right hand to uphold the Constitution, put it by the bed and read it at night. I mean, it’s a delightful document. I can feel Geraldine’s eyes on the back of my head. You might be going, but I’m going to stay.
For a lawyer, being in here, and Bobby Travaglini was here a moment ago, and Tommy Birmingham before him, gave me the job as chairman of Judiciary, and for that, I’m eminently thankful. Because this government that we have, this Constitution that we labor under, work under, was the model for the federal Constitution. And this experiment that we have lived for over 200 years is unique. The people took sovereignty from sovereign and decided to exercise it themselves. We’ve got the job here, now of continuing that tradition. Obviously you can’t have thousands of people deciding on the government so they came up with this representative idea. In our instance, its 40 senators, there were more reps years ago, even more than 240. That job now, and I look back to 40 years ago, the membership has changed somewhat. I looked at the Senate; there were 39 males and one female. In fact, I take credit for doubling the number of women senators in the Senate.
Madame President, also one of the proudest moments I ever had was nominating you for Senate President. You have fulfilled every single thought and word I expressed on the day that I nominated you. You have not forgotten from whence you came. You support those and help those who need government. And that’s not a particularly popular cause as you know. On a personal note, as regard to, I guess, my non-relationship to the press, that first your little bill, the freedom of religion bill, there was a reporter who followed me upstairs, and had a camera. I said, ‘Look, the thing’s unconstitutional. What are we going to do next? Protect zucchini regimens?” And the kid with the camera says, ‘Oh that’s great’ I said, ‘What do you mean, I want to show you the Harvard Law review article and I was to show you this other one. He wasn’t interested. And then it dawned to me that ‘Uh oh, things have changed.’ We don’t have A. A. Michaelson anymore. He used to write for the Berkshire Eagle and do op-ed pieces for the Globe on Saturdays. Stevie Brewer, I know, knew him. Brilliant guy, you could actually read his columns and learn something. He was good structural form, county government, Governor’s council, house capitalizations, Dave Nyan, now gone, Jerry O’Neil, who created the spotlight team, who I’d known as a youngster. I remember one time he was heading the spotlight team and we went over to what was called The Golden Dome across the street. And I went to introduce him, and again, keep in mind now that I was your age, and everyone else, when I looked at the bird book last night; they were all born in 1909, 1917, and they were all males. So Gerry and I would go over there and I brought O’Neil over, and I introduced him as the head of the spotlight team. Everybody’s going to head to the window, to the door. But there was a, and we know that newspapers now have a bit of financial problem today. And it’s true. When I was first in here, we had a State House reporter covering for the Brockton Enterprise and the local area. We haven’t had one since I got here. I had one of the reporters say the other day, ‘Bob, how many people do you think are in the news room?’ I said, ‘Gee. I don’t know. When I started in the business, 2 o’clock in the afternoon there will be 30 people in the newsroom at the Brockton Enterprise, now it’s called the Enterprise. I said, ‘How many?’ Three. I mean, that’s not good.
When we talk, sometimes, the mob jargon disturbs me, they talk about when they talk about transparency, and I’m thinking look, why don’t you just use the work transparent when bestowing the virtues of Saran wrap, you know, what you need is openness. And frankly, we have more of it then, than we have now. I want to conclude by just saying, I hope, and I know because of this, there’s a lot of talk about changes in ethics law and in that area, just vote carefully. Take it from me. That vote I made, reducing the House. I thought it was a reform. It was the worst vote I ever made. It diminished democracy. And the other point, looking through that bird book the other night, we had folks called Brahmans, you know, their names appear in the House Chamber up top and on that other dome. After some of these reforms, they’re not here anymore. That hurts your party in particular. We had some very, very bright and able people who now no longer run because of our disclosures. In fact, somebody jokingly said one time, a certain member that I served with who married a lady from a similar background whose assets were beyond belief. It take half the year to fill out these disclosure forms. A couple years ago, I tried to get somebody to put their name in for the SJC. Brilliant lawyer, great legal career, looked at what he had to fill out and wouldn’t do it. So vote careful. Be careful in that area. I would conclude by saying Gerry and I, last Sunday, we went to a dedication of a grammar school. And I have grammar schools in Brockton because of you folks. Paid for 90% by the state, and the school was dedicated to a lady, the first public building dedicated to a woman in Brockton. A minority lady, a wonderful woman that I knew growing up but it’s because of what you folks do here.
I’ll conclude by stealing from Frost, if you recall the poem, The Road Not Taken. He observes, Two roads diverge in a yellow wood. All of you have taken the road less traveled by. We are all better, members of the Commonwealth, because of what you folks have done. You don’t get the credit you’ve deserved. I know you may not take yourselves seriously, but you take your work seriously. I just want to thank you and the words come inadequate from the bottom of my heart. For the friendship that you showed me, over these years; the assistance that you’ve been, on the issues that I’ve dealt with dealing with the courts, again, this is a speech that I didn’t want to make. I’m not particularly happy that I’m leaving, but the time comes when you have to do certain things. From the bottom of my heart, Madame President, fellow senators, thank you.
Remarks of Senate President Therese Murray.
Thank you, Senator Creedon. I would now like to say a few words about Senator Robert Antonioni.
During the last 17 years, Senator Antonioni has become a powerful voice and true leader in public education.
We came into the Senate together in 1992, and I was lucky to work with Senator Antonioni on Chapter 70 funding reform... It would never have gotten done without him.
He was always a forward thinker in the field of education ...
Under his leadership as Senate chairman of the Education Committee, he helped implement the landmark 1993 Education Reform Act, overseeing the addition of more than $7 Billion for public education in the Commonwealth.
And he has been a strong supporter over the years for early education and special education, as well as spearheading the movement for longer school days.
He has also been a passionate and effective advocate for mental health and suicide prevention by raising awareness on these issues, educating the public and finding more funding.
And Senator Antonioni has been engaged in other areas – fighting to keep his district vital with workforce training grants and development measures to create jobs and help local businesses flourish in the community.
And he has weighed in on public safety as well, sponsoring reforms in our drunk driving laws, the sex-offender registry and juvenile justice.
We’re going to miss him, and his work, but he leaves behind a remarkable record of accomplishment that has made the Commonwealth a better place and will have a lasting effect on citizens for years to come.
Senator, what more could you ask? It was a job well done.
Remarks of Senator Marian Walsh.
Thank you, Madam President and thank you to the members. As Jackie Gleason said, “How sweet it is.” It’s been a long day’s journey and tonight, Senator Antonioni. And I know that Senator Brewer and I am very privileged that you have included us in your farewell address today.
It was the House of Representatives in 1989; Governor Dukakis had lost his general election for the White House to George Bush, Sr., Our Commonwealth was close to receivership and Representative Antonioni had participated in over 300 roll calls by March of that year; from taxes to death penalty to abortion. Bob sat in the third division, almost directly behind another freshman state representative from Boston, her name was Marian Walsh. From the first hello and handshake a friendship began that from the start felt solid and comfortable as if they had been friends for a very long time. During this tumultuous period they steadied each other, they shared information, observations and many laughs. In their second term, Bob had a chance to run for the state senate in a special election and it took him so long to decide whether to run, he almost missed the election. Well, that night he prevailed in a roller coaster, nail biter election that went well into the morning with his victory under 200 votes. Well, Jimmy Stuart goes to the state senate now where he continues to slay dragons, rule the ladies and seemingly without breaking a sweat. At the next general election, Marian Walsh enters the State Senate after challenging the incumbent republican senator from Medfield; that class has many members still serving and among them our distinguished Senate President Therese Murray. We did learn over these years about each other’s immigrant roots from Italy and France and Ireland. We learned that our lives shared many parallel parts. We both became lawyers, hailed from large families whose grandmothers were really good cooks. We both had parents of very modest beginnings, who because of the Jesuits were able to receive a very sterling education and into law and medicine. And then there was of course, and continues to be, our mothers. As my father would say, “that is the corker.” For Senator Antonioni and me, voting off, Madame President, was not voting differently from leadership, but voting differently from our mothers. “Is that right, Mrs. Antonioni?” Our mother’s met very early in our legislative careers to both our later discomfort and anxiety because they really hit it off. Mrs. Walsh who was more mature in years and Mrs. Antonioni were and are giant intellectually, they were well read, they’re poised, they’re elegant and beautiful women. I especially recall several years ago, participating at then, Cardinal Law of Boston’s request in a very prestigious event in Worcester. It was called The Catholics in the Public Square. My memory is that it was a consortium of academics, theologians, ethicists examining the social justice issues of the day. Bob and I were asked to speak on a specific subject and to participate in a Q and A panel. We did, and of course of our mothers joined us, since they were close to the Cardinal and the Archdiocese. Well, after the program, while walking from one building to another building, I remember Cardinal Law pausing and lowering his voice, which made me want to listen all the more, and turned to Senator Antonioni and he asked him to consider a delayed vocation. Today we both doubt very much that that solicitation would be renewed. A few years later, Senator Antonioni, while the distinguished Chair on the Committee on Education was invited to China, by their government to collaborate on public education. Bob was the Chair of the delegation and he graciously appointed me the Vice Chair. The experience was memorable, very memorable with the long days and the hard work, but that is where learned how much Bob loved his hometown of Leominster. Because Bob, at the close of each of these very formal meetings would present the presiding dignitary of each province with a very rare, very valuable and very hard to get Johnny Appleseed paperweight, from the great City of Leominster and they loved it. We tried to get a paperweight today, but I understand it’s a very limited edition and they’re no longer available. So, I thought, that you would want nothing more than for your colleagues to meet Johnny Appleseed. Ladies and Gentlemen, please say hello to Johnny Appleseed. I understand that you called the capital state police when you thought this was missing in your office today. It was a loan, and shall be returned shortly. Yes, Bob loves Leominster and as a matter of fact he frequently reminds us of this great affection especially at Christmas time.
Well a few years ago, we received, Buck and I, two pink flamingos. Buck and I laughed and as a joke, a big joke, we put them on the front of our lawns as part of our Christmas motif. We were shocked the next day when they were stolen. I know you understand that we didn’t report this crime. I happen to mention it to Bob later in the year, and what did Bob do? That very next Christmas, Bob gave us a pelican like the flamingo; Leominster, the plastic city of the United States of America.
Now back to China. After travelling twenty-two hours from Beijing to LA, where Bob slept most of the flight and exited the plane like “dead man walking.” He slips through this long custom line like John Boy on the Walton’s, and yours truly wasn’t doing badly either. And then suddenly he perks up and comes to life, he turns his back to this 6'5" custom officer and proclaims jokingly, I thought, check her out good, she’s trouble. Initially, I was laughing and then I was not as I was patted down, and brought to a side area where I was thoroughly searched. Remember this Senator Antonioni? Well, after considerable time and $280 later, I caught up with my old friend Bob. And he turns to me in a fatigue stupor and says, in all seriousness, “What took you so long?” We have all received criticism in the press, and as Bob says, “Some more than others”, and as Bob says, “perhaps, I more than most” And just to drive this point home, Bob decides to remind my supporters at my Harvest Breakfast in Dedham, Massachusetts, in the heart of my district about all of my unpopular votes. And he lists them one by one and at the end of his presentation he says, “I think you need this helmet.”
Well, today we have chatted about many things. We chatted about our mothers, and our families and our church and our faith and the stereotypes and the expectations. But for Robert Etilio Antonioni, there have been very, very high expectations; from being the first born in his family to the first Senator to cast a vote during our roll calls. Senator Antonioni’s, his dignity and his grace, they are well known. But it is his leadership, and his courage, and his quest for a political order that is fueled by knowledge, and by virtue and by justice. These are perhaps his hallmark. His politics are morally informed, where the public receives representation worthy of their citizenship, and of their sacrifice. Senator Antonioni equipped me only a few weeks ago that the legislature and lawmaking and community service have actually become his life, and what a wonderful life it has been. He has brought to his parents, Etilio and Jackie Antonioni. To his family, to his friends, to his alma maters, to his church, to his constituents and to the entire Commonwealth, from Cape Cod to Chicopee, he has brought integrity, and devotion. Bob has brought some of the positive changes that we as a people yearn for, and he has brought them through his approach, through his substance and through his tone. Senator Antonioni’s service has been transformative in a genuine application of the very best in American Politics.
Bob, it has been an honor to serve with you, to learn from you and be inspired by you. These remarks fall far short of the quality or the impact of your service. They are however, abundant in respect and gratitude.
Senator Antonioni, your time here is coming to a close. But you are also needed; you are needed at the law, you are needed at the National Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and you are needed at the Alliance Nationally for the Mentally Ill, you are needed at the Pan Mass Challenge and your passion for ice hockey, we can ask earlier than 11 am and fly fishing will all get more of your time.
Bob, may you enjoy your good health, may your law office flourish with prosperity and justice. And may Etilio Antonioni, Antonioni and Antonioni have many victories ahead, but most of all we want to thank you for the victories you’ve given us, both legislatively, morally, politically. Getting to know you, Senator Antonioni and the footprint you have left here, is a thank you we can’t even convey; all the best to you and your family, and thank you so very, very much.
Remarks of Senator Stephen M. Brewer.
Madam President and my fellow Senators, It is an honor to speak to you today to bid a final farewell to our colleagues. To Senator Creedon who goes off to the Velvet Coffin and who will emerge like Brain Stokers Dracula once every six years: Thank you for the memories, for your stories and for always lighting up our Caucus. You will never be replaced in the Chicken Caucus.
To Senator Resor who has her quiet passion for the environment has made our future more sustainable: It is your ability to advocate without loud noise that has made you a most effective person for future generations.
To Senator Augustus, you have lifted your lamp high for the citizens of our state who need the passion and compassion and humanity that is so much the good man that you are. I have rarely seen a Legislator so effective in so short a time. You will be missed.
And to the Dean of the three Central Mass Senators who are leaving, we hereby also bid farewell. When Bob Antonioni, Marion Walsh, Marc Pacheco and I entered this venerable State House as classmates 20 years ago, I am sure none of us expected to be here at this moment: 1988 to 2008. We have all aged some, except Bob — he still has that same Boy Scout youth that I think probably still gets him carded.
That first year, of the 20 years that we have served, was without precedent: the Dukakis meltdown, tax votes within the first 90 days, our bond rating of 48 out of 50 states, Sunday Lottery — over 700 roll call votes in the House that first year. Friday sessions for Home Rule petitions. It was a time where we were formed by fire and forged bonds that were never broken.
The prized youth from Leominster, who really looked more like a Page, a Holy Cross graduate; son of Etilio and Jacqueline; brother of Marie, Christine, Ellen, Janet, and John, came to Beacon Hill and left an indelible mark of public service, integrity, good will, preparedness and, most important, moral courage. Pericles said “what you leave behind is not what you engrave in state monuments but what is woven into the lives of others.”
We have seen his moral courage when he chaired a hearing in Gardner Auditorium on the Death Penalty. A ten hour hearing with very strong emotions and polling calling for state-sanctioned executions. Bob listened to his heart and his moral compass to stand strong in opposition to it.
Moral courage is the product of a strong faith and upbringing. To stand up for equal rights for all people regardless of their sexual orientation. When Bob listened to his moral compass, he led — long before many of us followed.
As the longest serving Chairman of the Education Committee, Bob has been principal to the statewide reform of public education. Probably attending more school buildings in Massachusetts than anyone, he has been a calming influence at hundreds of meetings and hearings on the issue of education equity, quality and accountability. The state of public education is in a far better place here in Massachusetts because of you, my friend.
Representing North Central Massachusetts for these past 20 years, Bob Antonioni has left an enduring legacy of achievement:
• Negotiated the infamous sewer agreement between Leominster, Lunenburg and Lancaster. The state mandated an intermunicipal agreement for disbursement of an infrastructure grant. This agreement needed approval by two boards of selectmen, a city council and a mayor. At one point, Senator Antonioni had all three communities in the room and said “Let’s just pretend we’re getting a divorce. Who should get what?”
• Enlisted the support of his friend then Secretary Bob Durand to get the state to pay 1/3 of the purchase price for Sholan Farms — the last apple orchard in Leominster — the home of Johnny Appleseed. Today, Sholan Farms is a city-run apple orchard that is wildly successful. And, it prevented 168 homes from locating on one of the most beautiful vistas in the City.
• Negotiated the infamous Notown Reservoir agreement between Leominster and Fitchburg. Leominster and Fitchburg have a traditional football rivalry, but Fitchburg’s proposal to build an industrial park near the banks of Leominster’s drinking water supply almost created WWIII. The Senator was able to reach an agreement between the state and the two communities to allow the state to purchase the land from Fitchburg to protect the watershed and gave Fitchburg the funding to purchase other land for their industrial park.
• After the devastating closure of the General Electric plant in Fitchburg, Bob worked with state officials, Senate Ways and Means and the Senate President to secure $14,000,000 over 20 years for Fitchburg to implement their Urban Renewal plan.
• And, he saved a mountain. Again working with his friends at Environmental Affairs, Bob was able to save Mount Watatic in Ashby. This popular place for recreation was able to have a housing development at its base, preventing access to the mountain. Its view and recreational opportunities are now preserved forever.
• In the late 1990’s, North Central Massachusetts had very little infrastructure-ready industrial land. Companies looking to expand and new companies were not looking to North Central for space. In the past ten years, Bob has secured funding for four major industrial parks. Two of which are now full and two of which are under construction.
•In addition to the many highway projects that the Senator has pushed for, perhaps the most difficult was the Fifth Street Bridge in Fitchburg. It was delayed several times due to environmental concerns and state funding. Not only did he expedite the project, but what resulted from his efforts was an amazing “mini Lenny Zakim bridge” in the heart of downtown. It is certainly hard to miss!
His work on behalf of Mount Wachusett Community College and Fitchburg State College has created first-rate institutions of higher learning that are a credit to the Commonwealth.
He was always able to do his job with good grace and humor. I remember a meeting held once on Commuter Rail Service from Fitchburg to Boston held at the George Wallace Civic Center in Fitchburg. A large group of concerned legislators and angry, frustrated commuters were getting ready for a session with the Executive Office of Transportation that all of us have endured over the years. At the last moment, in walks Senator Antonioni looking like Donald Duck: yellow rain hat, yellow rain coat, and yellow rain pants, walking his 10 speed bicycle into the auditorium to testify. He addresses the officials by testifying that he believes he could ride his bicycle from Leominster to Boston faster than the commuter rail and like those particular trains, it is cold in the winter and hot in the summer. For a person as humble as Bob is, he effectively made his point.
And didn’t we always look forward to his debates with Senator Lees (another person of the velvet coffin) regarding the Lawyers Caucus or a jab about Johnny Appleseed Tourism? As I recall, Johnny Appleseed won.
We will miss his votes. Since we vote alphabetically, his guidance (or tanking) will perhaps leave us to follow the vote of a person whose name begins with a B. We will have to pay better attention to the debate at hand.
Through triumph and tragedy, Bob Antonioni has inspired us to listen to, as Lincoln called it, “The better angels of our nature.”
Last Thursday, I was walking in a little village called Howth, just north of Dublin and the coast of the Irish Sea and I stood in front of the home of a great Irish writer, William Butler Yeats. The cold Irish Sea winds blowing in my face and as I explained Yeats to my 16 year old daughter Audrey who was not yet born when we came to this building, I thought of his famous quote and to you, Bob Antonioni, on behalf of our classmates and our fellow Senators, I offer you these words of Yeats:
“Think where man’s glory most begins and ends. And say my glory was I had such friends.”
God speed, Bob Antonioni.
Remarks of Senator Robert A. Antonioni.
Thank you very much Madam President for your very kind words.
To my colleagues, Senator Walsh, Senator Brewer, I am humbled by your comments, a little embarrassed in parts, but eternally grateful, so grateful.
This is a day that I hoped would not come. Truth be told, I have sat here for 17 years now and I have listened to the farewell speeches from my colleagues who have gone before me, as it were, and I remember thinking, ‘Gosh, what would I say, if I were there?’ And in truth, I didn’t want to think about it. And I didn’t think about it. I just thought, ‘Wow, that’s too bad they had to do that’ You know. I’ll just keep running. Well, time comes on and I decided it was time for me to leave. My sisters, one of whom is here, Marie and the others, they’ve often said to me, ‘You know, Bob, it’s time that you get a life.’ And I think they are correct in some respects. And for a number of reasons I’ve decided that this would be my last term.
Thinking about what I might say here today. I’m not going to talk too much about anything that I have done here, because that’s not necessary. But I would say thank you to some people who have made my presence here possible and meaningful.
First I want to thank my constituents out in Leominster; we’ve heard a little bit about Leominster today. You know, it is a great honor to represent your hometown because those are the people that know you best, presumably. And for them to elect you to this institution, in particular to this Chamber, it is a tremendous honor. It really is. I have really enjoyed helping everyone out in the district. It’s been a great thing. In particular, I was to thank two women in my office that made me look good at home.
There’s Wendy Wiiks. Wendy is here somewhere. There she is, Wendy. And Tilly Ryan. Is Tilly here somewhere? Tilly is up top. Tilly is going to be chief of staff for my successor, Senator-elect Flanagan. Tilly and Wendy ran that office and really made things happen. We all know how much we rely upon our staff, but I just want to say publicly that I am very grateful. They really did a wonderful job.
I also enjoyed being helpful in my work with the different committees that I have served on. The first committee of substance that I was appointed to was the Criminal Justice. The House Chair at that time, and I was elected with my colleagues, that just spoke, along with Senator Pacheco back in 1988. I can recall serving with then chair Jim Brett, the gentleman from Boston, a good friend then and a good friend now.
I came to appreciate the important role we’ve got here. You want to do the popular thing and also want to do things that are constitutional, as the gentleman suggested. I learned that lesson there on many different occasions. I am proud of the role I played on the death penalty. We came very close, a number of years ago, to having that here. It was quite a thing. And I’m happy to be helpful there.
And more recently and for the last 12 years, I have served as the Senate Chair of the Education Committee. And I’ve got to be honest with you, it’s not a position I asked for or, frankly, that I wanted. When Senate President Tom Birmingham called me and said Bob, you know his way, his very calming voice, he said, Bob, I’m thinking I’d like you to be the chair of the Education Committee, and I said why? I said, Mr. President, I’ve been with the death penalty for four years and now you are sending me to the teachers unions. I said I don’t know what’s going to be harder. And he said, ‘I think you’re going to do very well.’ And I said, ‘You know what I think?’ You don’t usually say that to the Senate President, whether it’s to Terry Murray, to Trav, or Tom Birmingham. You don’t say, this is what I think, you say ‘Yes’ that’s what you say. I said that you know, I think that Senator Walsh would be very good at this. She will be a good chairman, There was silence on the phone. I said, ‘Mr. President?’ He said, ‘Yes?’ I said, ‘What do you think of that?’ He said I think I want you in that chair.
I am not sure why he didn’t want Senator Walsh, because she was a wonderful chair in so many ways. But I just think they had some issues. That’s all I remember. We all had issues and that’s ok.
So in the event, I became education chair. And I’ll tell you what, it has been a wonderful, a gratifying experience. I’ve asked to be reappointed ever since then. It has been a wonderful thing. We’ve worked on so many different issues. Some of my colleagues have mentioned them, so I’m not going to go over that now. The good thing about being on the Education Committee is I’ve met so many wonderful people. In this building and outside of the building.
My good friend Julia Landau, from Mass Advocates for Children, a real staunch advocate for children’s rights, particularly relating to special education; she has become a very close friend. And has been a mentor to me in so many different ways over the years. I want to thank you, Julia, for your friendship and for your many kindnesses to me.
I want to thank my education staff. A number of years ago, you may remember, Doug Howgate. He was a short fellow, very funny. And I also want to thank Michelle Shelton. I think Michelle is here somewhere. Michelle is an incredibly bright woman, very funny also, and someone that I am really going to miss working with. I also worked with a number of advocates like Norma Sharpiro and Anne Lambert. I don’t think many of you know them. Beautiful people and I think I am the better for having worked with them.
I also met and worked with so many different people in this institution. Madam Chair, you came from the Senate Ways and Means Committee, you and your staff was just as helpful then, as you are now. I can remember working very closely with Catherine Hornby, many of you may remember her, I think one of the brightest persons I’ve ever met. I have forgiven her for being a Yankees fan and if she were here tonight, I would say, ‘Thank you Catherine, for your advice, for your counsel.’ I consider her to be a dear friend as well.
I also want to thank another staff person, Liz Caputo. Liz is a full time law school student, coming into Suffolk Law School. She’s very bright; she did a lot of my special education work with Julia. She also organized my budget presentations every year. And I’m going to miss Liz greatly. Liz is a sweetheart, very well organized, very bright, I’ve been blessed.
I also have enjoyed being helpful here in the chamber. A couple of you have noted I was the lead-off hitter as it were here. I would vote first, for those of you who are visiting us, alphabetically, I would vote first with every issue that came up. And it’s something of responsibility, because my colleagues would come in and say Bob, what’s the vote, do you know. And I will admit and I apologize to all of you that occasionally I would hit a foul ball, I would. It might be because I was on the phone out in the hall or I missed the signal from the leadership. Whatever it is, I didn’t hit it square and some of you might have taken the wrong vote because of that and I apologize. But I want you to know, as you look into the future, as the senator note, you’re going to have a new lead-off hitter here. And that’s going to be the gentleman from Essex, Senator Baddour. He is a wonderful friend. He’s a pretty good hitter. But the thing of it is, I think it’s a good thing that we’re having this discussion out in the open. The thing of it is with Senator Baddour, he hits from both sides of the plate. And by that I mean, please don’t misconstrue, by that I mean, that most of the time he hits from the left side of the plate. He votes with the Democrats, and every once in a while, and you don’t really know when it’s going to happen, and that’s the difficulty, is that he’ll hit from the other side of the plate. He’ll hit with the Lilliputians over there.
So I ask for your understanding as we make this transition in the lineup. Come March or April, a number of you might be thinking, ‘My goodness, we miss Bob Antonioni, we always knew how to hit.’ Let me just say this, give the kid a chance. Give him a chance. I know he’s going to do well. I only wish I can be here to see it.
But if you are inclined to reminisce about Bob Antonioni, you don’t have to go very far. You don’t have to go far at all. In fact you can just amble down to office of the gentleman from the Cape and the Islands, Senator O’Leary. Because you see, he has already hired, I am not out of the business, and I’m still... I have a pulse, it’s looking good, but nonetheless, that hasn’t stopped my good friend from hiring one of my good staff, Michelle Shelton; she’s gone over there to work with him. I also hear that “Senator Sand Dunes” has an interest in the Education Committee chairmanship. He is looking for my gavel. And it’s also been reported that Senator Nantucket has been downstairs measuring my office. Yes. Well, all I can say to my good friend from the Cape and the Islands is this.
Senator, you can take my staff and you can take my gavel and you can take my big brown sofa and my two fishing posters and - the glass jar that hold my Hershey candies that Michelle will hide from me. You can have all of those things, but Senator, you can’t be Bob Antonioni.
I’ve intentionally tried to keep the talk light here tonight and I hope that my colleagues that I have occasionally given a hard time to, in particular tonight, Senator Walsh, Senator Baddour, and Senator O’Leary will forgive my fun at their expense. The truth is that I have chosen them for some teasing tonight because I love them best. That’s the truth and I love all of you in this chamber and the thought of leaving here makes me very sad.
I would like to thank a number of support staff here in the Senate that have given me and shown me a number of kindnesses for over the years. First, I would like to thank you Madam President. You have always been there for me and for my staff personally; and the rest of your staff has been wonderful. Rick, thank you.
I want to thank the court officer Michael Tierney. Michael, it has been a pleasure to know you. You and your staff have always been so accommodating to me, to my staff, and to my guests when they come in. I always bring them out there to the veranda to get a look; we don’t have buildings this high out in Leominster so this is a load of joy for us. I’d like to thank Officer Boardman and Officer Buckley, Christine and Kerry, they have been so wonderful.
The Senate Clerk and your staff, Mr. Welch, I have enjoyed bothering you on occasion about bills and most especially I’ve enjoyed talking to you about hockey. it has been a lot of fun and perhaps we will play together sometime on the ice.
I thank Senate Counsel, past and present, Alice Moore and our good friend, now over in the administration, David Sullivan. They have been so wise and so wonderful and patient with me.
This is the hard part. I thank my Senate staff, that I’ve not mentioned yet, for their service and friendship and support they provided me over the years. My chief of staff Jamie Mellen, is Jamie here? Right here, Jamie, raise your hand, let everyone see you. Jamie is looking for a job. We need your help with that. Let me say this, you could not have a fellow who knows how to manage an office and a Senator with grace and humor. He is just a gentleman through and through and I want to thank you Jamie, for all that you’ve done.
My former scheduler is now working for, again, people are raking the drapes down before the body is cold, Rita Noonan, my scheduler is now working for Senator Rosenberg. Rita is just a sweetheart. I know that she’s here somewhere. Rita is just so lovely, she knows everyone in the building and we had difficulty getting parking today for my folks, my sister; Rita took care of it, no problem. Rita, I’m going to miss you, you were a joy. People when they call from the district, they want to hear for you, so thank you.
There’s a young woman that’s working for me now, Laurance Daudet . She’s a lovely woman. I think she hails from Canada. She’s a big Canadiens fan, but again, we overlook that. She’s a lovely person, and Laurance, thank you for spending this time with me.
We also have some past staff that I’ve worked with. Sylvia Smith is over at the DOE. Jim McManus, Doug Howgate, I’ve mentioned, as well as some interns, Victoria, Ryan and Jeff Pecard.
I’d also like to thank my family; my mom and dad are here. I think it’s a little bit difficult, in other respect, harder for the family than it is for the legislators because we see the votes come and go and understand each other. It’s kind of like a big support group here. But the family members who have to listen to the comments out there on the street and have to explain your votes when perhaps they would rather not, that is a tough burden. And I want to thank my mom and dad and I hope I haven’t embarrassed you. They’re shaking their heads no, well, then good, because I might embarrass you just a little bit right now.
My mother and father have always been there for the events. They come down, they cut lettuce, they served spaghetti, all that. And they have been there in and out for me, as they have for all my siblings. But my mother also has not been shy about offering her services, as Marian suggested, a policy advisor. And so if there were issues that came up, particularly of a social nature, my mom might give me a call and say, this is what I think. But I’m waiting for her to say, ‘But do what you think is right.’ But it usually stopped at, “...This is what I think.”
One thing in particular, there was this vote a few years back, I forgot what it was. It was on the front page of the paper everyday for about a month or so. And in any event, I made my feelings known on that issue in the newspaper. And it was really so wonderful, and didn’t I get a call from my mother the next day saying, “Bobby, your father and I would like to sit down with you”.
Well if you remember back when you were 16 or 17 when your Mom says your father and I want to talk to you, you know nothing good comes from that conversation. And I wasn’t 16 or 17; I was about 46 I think. But I still went to their house with a big lump in my chest. It was a good conversation. Actually, I didn’t really talk. I listened. They were wonderful, and it was good, it was good. It was so good that when we had the vote like a week later my mom came, you know with the thousands of people here, my mom came and she brought along a few people, well it was more like 41 She brought... my mother brought a bus. And I remember when I went over to say hello to my mom and her friends, they were all very kind, very nice.
Mom, I just want you to know I am going to miss those moments. And I’m sorry that I wouldn’t be there for you to call on these votes. But I do have Jennifer Flanagan’s number. I know she’s going to look forward to hearing from you, I know she will.
Last but not least, I want to thank my campaign team. Wendy Wiiks, Bob and Linda Salvatelli, who are here, Karen and Manny Longo, who are here. Manny and I were on a boat together, Senator Morrissey, it was your advice that we did successfully there, and my good friend from Bolton, Micewitz is here. Without these people, I wouldn’t have gotten elected, that’s the truth, and my family and I want to thank them all very much.
In closing, let me just say this, this has been the opportunity of a lifetime to serve in this branch. It doesn’t get any better than this. It really doesn’t. What I’m going to miss, is being in here with you people, being in caucus. I wouldn’t miss running around at night to all the different things, while I enjoyed it while it lasted, but I’m going to miss this. I never imagined that I would get elected to here, and as I suggested, it has all gone by way too quick. I want you all to know I am going to miss you. I hope that your years remaining here will be fruitful, will be happy, and you do all the things that your constituents sent you to do here. It’s been the best. Thanks very much.
On motion of Ms. Menard the above remarks were ordered printed in the Journal of the Senate.
On motion of Mr. Creedon,—
Ordered, That when the Senate adjourns today, it adjourn to meet again on Monday next at eleven o’clock A.M., and that the Clerk be directed to dispense with the printing of a calendar.
On motion of Mr. Antonioni, at twenty-five minutes past six o’clock P.M., the Senate adjourned to meet on the following Monday at eleven o’clock A.M.