As Mayor Michelle Wu kicks off her term in Boston’s top office and makes the rounds across the city during her first day, Gov. Charlie Baker applauded her win and said the state is ready to partner with the city on a number of issues important to Wu.
The pair met in Baker’s State House office Wednesday for just under an hour and, among other things, discussed public transportation and issues surrounding the intersection of Massachusetts Ave. and Melnea Cass Blvd.
“She certainly exceeded what I think were anybody’s expectations with respect to how well she did on election day. And I think in many ways, that’s a good thing,” Baker said. ” … She certainly starts with what I would call the wind at her back and that’s important because there’s gonna be plenty of tough things that she’s gonna have to deal with.”
As a candidate, Wu campaigned on the promise of a fare-free T, an ambitious proposal that would need support of lawmakers and administration officials on Beacon Hill. It’s an idea that Baker previously said would be “worth the conversation,” though he has shown some resistance to the measure.
“I think there are a lot of things in public transportation that we can find common ground on, we actually talked about a bunch of those things,” Baker told reporters after their meeting.
Baker now finds himself in the final year of his second term with a new leader of Boston and the third mayor of the city in 2021. Asked how Baker’s relationship with Wu would be different from his oft-mentioned “bromance” with former Mayor Marty Walsh, the governor said “times change and context changes.”
“Whether or not we’ll get to the point where my wife will be taking my phone away from me on a Saturday night at 10 o’clock and telling Marty Walsh that it’s time for the boys to stop talking, who knows,” Baker said. “But that’s not required for a lot of important work to get done between state government and municipal government in the city of Boston.”
Does Wu see a partner in the governor?
“We share deeply the sense that the issues are urgent and families can’t wait for the resources and the action that is a true opportunity in this moment through our recovery,” she said. “I look forward to continuing to have these conversations and to coordinate closely on action steps.”
(Copyright (c) 2021 State House News Service.