CHARLOTTE - Massachusetts has a huge role in the Democratic National Convention this week in hot and Charlotte. Senator John Kerry, Governor Deval Patrick, Mayor Thomas Menino, Congressman Barney Frank, and candidate Elizabeth Warren all slated to speak at some point to the week but each of them has a different thing they need to accomplish.
Governor Deval Patrick
Patrick's Massachusetts political career will end when he finish his second term but in the meantime he has been busy building the foundation for a national career.
Speculation about a future presidential run as well as an appointment to a cabinet position or the Supreme Court has swirled around Patrick since he announced this would be his last term. Patrick has to simply live up the hype that he is a great public speaker but he has to do it in an un-Christie like way. If Patrick pulls a Chris Christie and focuses mostly on himself his speech will probably fall flat. Look for Patrick to talk about RomneyCare while criticizing Mitt Romney's time as Massachusetts governor.
Nobody in the Massachusetts delegation has more to lose or gain with her speech than Warren. If Warren goes too far to left or stumbles it will circulating in Massachusetts for days, possibly weeks. If she does well she benefits from a couple days of positive coverage. Warren doesn't have to bolster her wonky credentials as those are already pretty well established. Look for a personality driven speech that defends the liberal policies of the Obama administration, too.
Mayor Thomas Menino
Mayor Menino has the least to lose from his speech because he has no amibition for higher office. Menino will look to trumpet the policies of Obama and, possibly, bash Romney.
Congressman Barney Frank,
Three words: Should be fun.
Senator John Kerry
Eight years after accepting his party's nomination for president Kerry returns to the stage in Charlotte to, most likely, attack Romney's stewardship of Massachusetts. Like Patrick, Kerry is rumored to be jockeying for a cabinet position, most likely the Secretary of State. Look for Kerry to talk up Romney's shortcomings as governor but needle him for his weak foreign policy credentials, too.
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