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Charlie Baker claims he is pretty close to his decision on a 2022 reelection bid

Charlie Baker claims he is pretty close to his decision on a 2022 reelection bid

The second-term Republican stated on Monday that Governor Charlie Baker is pretty close to electing whether or not to seek reelection next year, while debating doubts it will be as an independent candidate.

Baker, 65, said on GBH's Boston Public Radio about his decision. We're getting pretty close, I said soon.

Baker's coy answer to what are now near daily questions about his plans for 2022 remained consistent with his months-long still-making-up-my-mind mantra.

He's continued to hold regular fundraisers and travel the state, implying that he'll seek a third consecutive four-year term. In Springfield, the night before Thanksgiving, he flipped the switch on a holiday lights display, where a supportive Democratic state legislator yelled Run, Charlie, Run!, according to Springfield.

But those closest to Baker have described him and close-lipped over whether or not to run pushing a decision that has ramifications up and down Massachusetts statewide ballot later this year.

Baker told hosts Jim Braude and Margery Eagan on Monday, "I don't sit around and say to myself, You know, can I win or not?' and "I don't have the will, the desire, and agenda that I believe will be in the state's greatest interest, as well as the energy and drive to follow through and deliver on it?"

Baker, on the other hand, suggested that if he does run, it would be as a Republican. A survey recently released by the consulting firm Northwind Strategies found Baker would hold a lead as an independent gubernatorial candidate in a hypothetical matchup with Attorney General Maura Healey, a Democrat, and former state representative Geoff Diehl, a Republican.

Healey, who like Baker is in her second term, has been considering a possible gubernatorial run, but has yet to reveal her intentions. Three other Democrats have already started campaigns, including Harvard professor Danielle Allen, state Senator Sonia Chang-Daz, and former state Senator Ben Downing.

Diehl, who failed to challenge Warren in 2018, announced his gop on July 4.

Baker has had discussions with the conservative, pro-Donald Trump leadership of the Massachusetts Republican Party, but he's deflected claims about leaving a party with whose national leadership and policy viewpoints the moderate governor has been at odds for years.

Baker remarked, "I believe in my type of Republicanism," calling it a "reasonable assumption to make" that if he was to run again, it would be under the GOP flag.

Baker has kept doing so. Last week, supporters mailed invitations for a fundraiser for him and Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito in Springfield on Dec. 14, with one of its hosts declaring in the email (and in bold, italicized, and underlined letters) FOUR MORE YEARS IS THE MANTRA.

MassLive.com was the first to inform the event.

Tony Ravosa, a consultant and former Springfield city councilor who is organizing the event with Peter Picknelly, the chairman and CEO of Peter Pan Bus Lines, said, I have every personal expectation that hes going to run. But I cant say anyone has told me that.

Baker has not revealed what he plans to do, according to Picknelly, who said he also wants to attend a separate fundraising event for Baker on Wednesday at a private residence in the Worcester area.

Baker said, "He acts like he's running," and "It's my hope he runs again." "He appreciates his job, takes it very seriously, and wants to do well by the state and all its citizens," Picknelly stated of Baker. "He likes his job, takes it very seriously, and wants to do well by the state and all its citizens.

Baker does not appear intent on quietly choosing retirement, regardless of his choice. Towards the end of his interview on Monday, Eagan talked about how some baby boomers at the top several sectors are likely to be the last to step away. The boomers are refusing to retire, Eagan said.

Baker, a baby boomer, stated that he intends to be purposeful and productive as long as I can be purposeful and productive.

I don't have any hobbies, I don't boat, I don't fish, and my wife would lose her mind if I didn't have something useful to do. So I have a feeling I'm going to be working for a long time.

If Baker were to run and win a third consecutive four-year term, he would be the first governor to do so.

The broad-ranging interview on Boston Public Radio with The Swampscott Republican touched a number of other topics in a variety of other aspects.

Massachusetts has been working with 15 to 20 other states to develop a universal program or a single QR code, he said that people can utilize to show proof of their vaccination where it may be required. His administration has not disclosed details of the program, but Baker said he expects it will be disclosed soon.

He said the state will seek to expand the amount of vaccines it receives from the federal government amid what appears to be growing demand for booster shots. Officials, including Baker, have re-emphasized calls for individuals to seek out vaccines as concerns grow over the, which was initially reported by South African scientists on Thursday.

Now, when I go look at Vaxfinder.. I can always find appointments, Baker noted, adding that given the fact that we have far more demand now than we had a few weeks ago, we're going to see whether we cant increase our capacity to do more.

Matt Stout can be reached at. Twitter @ Matt Stout may be reached.

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