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Here’s what Marty Walsh thinks of Kim Janey’s handling of the police commissioner case

"Kim took action. I watched what she did."

U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh chats with acting Mayor Kim Janey after a press conference on Monday. Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff
The White Case:

For the first time, Marty Walsh was in Boston for official business as secretary of labor on Monday.

The former mayor was in town for a press conference about “Paid Leave for All,” a campaign for paid family and medical leave.

But reporters had a few questions left lingering from his tenure as the city’s chief executive, namely the controversy that enshrouded his appointment of Dennis White to police commissioner.

“It’s unfortunate,” Walsh said, according to GBH. “It’s just, you know, the one situation that I feel bad about is the Dennis White situation.”

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Walsh appointed White as police commissioner in February, but White was placed on leave only days later after The Boston Globe raised questions about decades-old domestic violence allegations against him.

Acting Mayor Kim Janey, who took over Walsh’s job when he left for Washington D.C. in March, ultimately fired White in June following an investigation into the allegations.

Janey has said White’s successor will be selected from a nationwide search, which should wrap up towards the end of this year.

White, meanwhile, has filed a lawsuit against the city and Janey, alleging he was discriminated upon based on his gender and race.

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Walsh, on Monday, was asked about the challenges he left for Janey, GBH reports.

“First of all, I didn’t realize that I was going to be asked to be secretary of labor. So, no matter when the transition is, it is going to happen,” he said. “It happened with me, from Tom Menino to me, and me to Kim [Janey], and from whoever is after Kim.

“I made it very clear I wanted to resolve that situation before I left. And unfortunately, wasn’t able to,” he added. “But, you know, Kim took action. I watched what she did. And now there’s a search for a commissioner. And that’s the right way to go.”

Walsh also responded to criticism from Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins about how he handled White’s appointment.

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In June, Rollins took aim at Walsh, telling WCVB that he either lied when he said he did not know about the allegations against White when he appointed him, or that Walsh is a bad manager for not knowing.

“Rachael’s my friend. Politics is politics,” Walsh said. “She’s my friend and I wish her well in the process moving forward.”

Rollins, who has helmed the district attorney’s office since 2019, was nominated by President Joe Biden last week to serve as the U.S. attorney for Massachusetts.

Walsh has denied that he knew of the allegations prior to selecting White.

In June, he was pressed about the appointment from Rep. Bob Good, a Virginia Republican, during a congressional hearing, where Walsh affirmed he “didn’t ignore anything.”

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“I didn’t,” Walsh said. “I wasn’t aware of the situation until, quite honestly, after I appointed him and it was pointed out to me in the in the newspaper.”

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