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Keller @ Large: Marty Walsh Should Proceed Cautiously

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WBZ-TV's Jon Keller Jon Keller
Jon Keller is WBZ-TV News' Political Analyst, and his "Keller A...
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BOSTON (CBS) - WBZ-TV political analyst Jon Keller talked to David Wade about Boston’s new mayor moments after Marty Walsh was sworn into office Monday.

Wade: What is Marty Walsh’s first order of business?

Keller: “Proceed cautiously. And that may sound counterintuitive because with a new mayor, everyone’s expecting fireworks. But as we saw in his speech today, Marty Walsh, in addition to being a city kid and the son of Irish immigrants, is also an experienced politician, with many years up on Beacon Hill, navigating the minefields of state and local politics. He knows that he has some tough challenges ahead and he listed them in his speech – the schools, urban crime, housing costs that are pricing many Bostonians out of the market.”

“These are not problems that are going to be dealt with overnight or even in the first year of a Walsh administration. I think what we saw today was a workman-like performance and a very wise decision by the new mayor to not come on too strong, to thank people, try to unite them behind him.”

“One of the most memorable moments of this event was when Mel King, the 1983 Boston mayoral candidate, long-time community activist, still the only African-American to make a Boston mayoral final, appeared on stage.”

“In his endorsement of Marty Walsh six days before his election, he said ‘Welcome to the new Rainbow Coalition,’ to which Walsh responded, ’All I could think of now is the rainbow’s complete.’ Ok, he made it. Now the question is – what’s at the end of that rainbow? Is there a pot of gold that all Bostonians can share in?”

Wade: A lot of people talk about this being the transition into a ‘new Boston.’ What will the new Boston be?

Keller: “He’s going to have to draw on the best elements and the best efforts of the Menino years, add his own input to it and create something that moves an already well-functioning city forward in a way that makes fiscal, economic and social sense. Is he up to it?  We’re about to find out.”

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