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GOOD MORNING, MASSACHUSETTS. Happy Monday!

MCGOVERN Q&A: ‘THE RIGHT THING IS TO IMPEACH’ — Rep. Jim McGovern, chair of the House Rules Committee, will have a key role when the House begins impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump, which will likely happen this week. I spoke with McGovern on Sunday about his experience when the mob stormed the Capitol last week, and his thoughts on the final days of the Trump administration. Our conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

A new video shows how close you were to the mob as it was breaking into the Speaker’s Lobby, and where a woman was shot. What was that like?
It never occurred to me that a mob could gain entrance into the United States Capitol. I was on the House floor. I wasn’t watching TV, I didn’t see what was happening outside. I was one of the last people to leave because I was in the chair. I walked out, and that’s the video that you saw. I looked to my left and I saw these doors barricaded with chairs and tables. And I saw this angry mob. They were banging on the glass door and the glass began to crack. I was really angry that a group of homegrown, fascist domestic terrorists would do something like this. I was furious at Donald Trump for instigating this. I’ll be very frank with you, I am pissed at a lot of my colleagues on the Republican side, who have for way too long given oxygen to these conspiracy theories.

You’re in Washington waiting for impeachment proceedings to begin. Explain what your role will be as chair of the House Rules Committee.
Everything will go through us. We will set the terms of how this will be brought up and how it will be debated. There may be other resolutions that we debate in addition to an impeachment resolution. Everything that goes to the floor comes to us. We’re probably the only committee that will discuss this matter before it goes to the floor.

This will be your second time impeaching Trump. How do you see your place in history?
I think in terms of acting in a way that my kids, and hopefully someday my grandkids and great grandkids, will think I did the right thing. At this moment, the right thing is to impeach him. Even if for some reason the Senate doesn’t act, nonetheless, he should be impeached. I’m concerned he’ll start a war with Iran or he’ll do something crazy. There aren’t enough people around him who have the courage to stop him from doing something stupid. I’ve come to understand there are a lot of cowards in Washington, D.C.

President-elect Joe Biden takes office Jan. 20. What would happen if the House looked at the short timeline and decided not to impeach Trump?
It sends a terrible signal to not only the people in this country, but to people all around the world. If we do nothing, this will happen again because there will be no consequence for a president, and those around him, who actively pushed a coup attempt to basically delegitimize the will of the people.

What do you think about Twitter banning Trump?
I’m glad that they did, to be honest with you. But they did so in the aftermath of an attempted coup. You can remove the liar, but not the lie he told. That’s the challenge right now.

After Trump leaves office, some people will still believe his unfounded claims that the election was stolen. How do you get everyone on the same page?
Republicans have to step up. I’m not saying that in a partisan way. They have to acknowledge clearly to all the people out there who believe in conspiracy theories that these were free and fair elections. Make an attempt to move away from Trumpism. They need to deradicalize their supporters. I am a liberal Democrat. Me telling Trump supporters that what they’re saying is not fact-based is not going to be terribly convincing. I’ll try. But I think that the thoughtful Republicans are going to have to step up and retake their party.

Do you feel safe attending the inauguration?
I’m here to do my job and I’m not gonna let anybody scare me away. I’ve been to every inauguration in person, including Donald Trump’s. I hated being there, but I thought it was the right thing to do. I’m not going to miss this one. I’m looking forward to Jan. 20 because I believe it will usher in a new era. One of the casualties of the Trump administration is that decency has been just scrubbed from our national politics. I’m not sure how much longer I want to be here, but I want good people to want to run for office. We’re going to have to do a lot of work to rebuild the image of being an officeholder.

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– “Massachusetts reports 5,396 COVID cases, 77 more deaths on Sunday after US hits new pandemic records,” by Benjamin Kail, MassLive.com: “Massachusetts public health officials reported 5,396 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the number of estimated active cases in the state to 90,567 as of Sunday, just days after the nation reached new records in COVID-19-linked deaths and case totals.”

– “Charlie Baker says he opposes violent protests — no matter the issue,” by Travis Andersen, Boston Globe: “Governor Charlie Baker said Friday that protesters should not engage in violence, no matter what issues they’re advocating for, as the nation continues to reckon with Wednesday’s bloody siege of the US Capitol.”

– “Baker stuffs war chest with eye to 2022,” by Christian M. Wade, The Salem News: “Gov. Charlie Baker is fattening his campaign coffers as speculation grows the popular Republican may seek an unprecedented third term. Baker reported raising $165,418 last month, according to his latest filings with the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance. That’s his biggest fundraising haul in more than two years.”

– “Districts roll back reopenings amid case rise,” by Sarah Betancourt, CommonWealth Magazine: “Dozens of school districts shifted to remote learning for at least two weeks after the holidays in an effort to keep the virus out of schools in the event students and parents traveled or engaged in large-person events during the break.”

– “No-fault eviction records could be sealed under Massachusetts economic development bill,” by Steph Solis, MassLive.com: “Tucked into a 101-page economic development bill passed in the waning hours of the legislative session is a proposal to let Massachusetts tenants facing no-fault evictions get their records sealed.”

– “Lawmakers wary of taking pay raises,” by Christian M. Wade, Eagle-Tribune: “Lawmakers are eligible for pay raises this year but many are wary of taking the extra cash as their constituents struggle amid the pandemic. The raises will boost the compensation of 200 House and Senate legislators by $4,280 per year, or about 6.46%, upping their base pay to $70,536 annually.”

– “U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling hints of future run for elective office,” by Joe Battenfeld, Boston Herald: “Republican U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling, who has carved out a strong law and order image during his tenure as Massachusetts’ top federal prosecutor, is considering a potential run for office in the future.”

– “At Elite Medical Centers, Even Workers Who Don’t Qualify Are Vaccinated,” by Apoorva Mandavilli, The New York Times: “A 20-something who works on computers. A young researcher who studies cancer. Technicians in basic research labs. These are some of the thousands of people who have been immunized against the coronavirus at hospitals affiliated with Columbia University, New York University, Harvard and Vanderbilt.”

– “Mass. gears up to begin COVID-19 vaccinations for first responders,” by John Hilliard, Boston Globe: “The effort to vaccinate the state’s roughly 45,000 first responders include police officers, firefighters, and emergency medical technicians. Communities that have announced efforts to vaccinate first responders beginning Monday include Norwood and Worcester, officials have said.”

– “The Race to Lead Boston Is Suddenly Wide Open,” by Ellen Barry, The New York Times: “Sometimes the guard changes slowly. Sometimes it changes overnight. That is what is happening in the city of Boston, which has been led by white men since its incorporation in 1822.”

– “Source: BPD Commissioner Gross Prepares Likely Run For Mayor Of Boston, WBZ: “With the nomination of Boston Mayor Marty Walsh as Joe Biden’s Labor Secretary, the race for his old office is heating up. … According to WBZ’s NightSide host Dan Rea, Boston Police Commissioner William Gross could be next to throw his hat in the ring.”

– “What’s Marty Walsh going to do with his $6 million campaign haul?” by Sean Philip Cotter, Boston Herald: “Mayor Martin Walsh’s stuffed wallet is on track to be heading to Washington with him — unless he chooses to donate some of his campaign haul. Walsh has built up a campaign account of more than $6 million — $6,189,899.72, to be precise.”

– “As Boston’s Mayoral Race Shifts, Wu Lands Two Big Endorsements,” by Adam Reilly, GBH News: “A pair of new endorsements from Boston City Council Michelle Wu, the first candidate to officially enter the 2021 Boston mayor’s race, could strengthen her standing as voters start turning their focus from national to local politics.”

– “We asked some of Boston’s leaders (who aren’t running for mayor) what the city’s next mayor should do. Here are their answers,” by Milton J. Valencia, Boston Globe: “Boston is a city in transition. Despite the economic successes of the last few decades, the building boom that has reshaped the city‘s skyline, and an influx of new residents, disparities remain.”

– “Mayor Marty Walsh to give State of City speech as he prepares for DC gig,” The Associated Press: “Boston Mayor Marty Walsh is preparing to give what’s expected to be his final State of City address as he prepares for a new post as President-elect Joe Biden’s labor secretary. The Democrat will deliver the annual address virtually on Tuesday.”

– “Department of Correction suspends operations at two facilities,” by John Hilliard, Boston Globe: “The state’s Department of Correction is temporarily suspending operations at two facilities within the next 60 days and working to place some prisoners in home confinement, amid a nearly 35-year low in the prison population, according to the department.”

– “A shopping bag held the key to safe school opening,” by Michael Jonas, CommonWealth Magazine: “School leaders in the small district serving about 1,000 students say the new testing program, combined with the rollout of a coronavirus vaccine and ongoing mitigation measures like mask-wearing and distancing in schools, offers the best hope yet for at least beginning a return to normalcy.”

– “Suffolk DA Rachael Rollins denies road rage incident detailed in citizen’s report,” by Alexi Cohan, Boston Herald: “Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins denied and clarified reports of a Christmas Eve road rage incident detailed in a citizen’s complaint report, saying the other person was driving ‘erratically.’”

– “Finances take center stage on Allston project,” by Bruce Mohl, CommonWealth Magazine: “After years of trying to reach consensus on what to build at the Allston I-90 interchange, state transportation officials now appear to be shifting gears and planning to let finances dictate what gets constructed there.”

– “Voting by mail worked in 2020. Ideas are surfacing about how Massachusetts can make it permanent,” by Matt Stout, Boston Globe: “Massachusetts residents wholly embraced the state’s mail-in voting experiment in 2020. This year will be threaded with debate about how to keep it.”

– “Mass. Jury Trials Set To Resume,” by Deborah Becker, WBUR: “Jury trials are scheduled to resume in some Massachusetts courthouses on Jan.12. Trials are scheduled in Lowell and Plymouth District Courthouses on Tuesday. They’re the first since the Trial Court stopped empaneling jurors at the start of the pandemic in March.”

– “‘This is the image I can’t forget’: Warren aide shares the impact on Black Hill staff of seeing the Confederate flag carried in Capitol,” by Dialynn Dwyer, Boston.com: “Like many across the country, Delaney, who is the deputy legislative director for Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, watched the assault on the Capitol unfold on television from home, fielding frantic messages from loved ones to assure them he was safe.”

– “Top U.S. House Democrat says House prepared to impeach Trump,” Reuters: “U.S. House Democrats are prepared to move forward with impeachment proceedings against Republican President Donald Trump as early as next week following his supporters’ siege at the U.S. Capitol, U.S. Assistant House Speaker Katherine Clark said on Friday.”

– “Rep. Seth Moulton: Republicans Lack ‘Courage’ To Impeach Trump,” by Hannah Uebele, GBH News: “Massachusetts Democrat Rep. Seth Moulton is calling on his fellow U.S. Representatives to impeach President Donald Trump if Vice President Mike Pence and the cabinet refuse to remove him from office. This comes after the insurrection of the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. by pro-Trump extremists on Wednesday.”

– “Lawmakers likely to vote on President Donald Trump impeachment Wednesday, US Rep. Stephen Lynch says,” by Benjamin Kail, MassLive.com: “Rep. Stephen Lynch of Massachusetts says President Donald Trump is staring down his second impeachment less than two weeks before he leaves the White House following the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol by a mob of Trump loyalists.”

– “Trump to award Bill Belichick the Medal of Freedom amid House impeachment push,” by Meridith McGraw, POLITICO: “With just days to go in office and facing calls to resign, President Donald Trump is planning to spend the upcoming week taking a ceremonial victory lap and making last-minute use of his presidential powers.”

– “Reaction to Capitol violence highlights GOP schism,” by Shira Schoenberg, CommonWealth Magazine: “Anthony Amore felt physically ill on Wednesday as he saw mobs of President Trump’s supporters violently breaching the US Capitol. … Amore, a security expert and former Republican candidate for secretary of state, said he now regrets his 2020 vote for Trump, even though he cast his ballot more as a protest vote, knowing it wouldn’t matter in Massachusetts.”

– “UMass Memorial Health Care investigating whether employees attended Trump-inspired riot in US Capitol,” by John R. Ellement, Boston Globe: “UMass Memorial Medical Health Care said Friday that an employee who was on the grounds of the US Capitol on Wednesday during the Trump-inspired violence that led to the deaths of five people, including a Capitol Police officer, was no longer affiliated with the organization.”

– “Massachusetts restaurant owner facing criticism for attending D.C. riots, calling event ‘peaceful,’” by Douglas Hook, MassLive.com: “‘I am at the Capitol Building. Zero violence and women and children all around. This is a peaceful protest.’ This was how Jeff Eller, a Massachusetts restaurant owner who traveled to Washington, D.C. this week, described the riots that culminated in pro-Trump supporters storming the U.S. Capitol.”

– “Somerville appointee under scrutiny for attending Trump rally in DC,” by Tim Logan and Laura Crimaldi, Boston Globe: “Jessica Turner is a supporter of President Trump, enough of one that she went to Washington last week for his “Stop the Steal” rally that ended with rioters storming the Capitol. She’s also an appointee on a board in Somerville that oversees affordable-housing funds.”

Herald: “DON’T LET UP,” — Globe: “House plans to force Trump out,” “Vaccine rollouts often hit potholes,” “For Biden, a reshaped political landscape.”

– “Fire at Black Springfield church evokes long history of hate, faith leaders say,” by Stephanie Barry, Springfield Republican: “In the waning days of 2020, Robinson watched the news of a smaller Black church just a few miles from his own, destroyed by fire. The Dec. 28 blaze — coupled with a charged political climate — triggered the same emotional response. Not again, Robinson thought, as he watched news reports showing parishioners of the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Presbyterian Church on Concord Terrace huddled outside the ruins of their own church.”

– “Devin Sheehan, Rebecca Lisi announce campaigns for Holyoke mayor,” by Dan Crowley, Daily Hampshire Gazette: “The empty field of candidates to replace outgoing Mayor Alex Morse began filling up Friday. Two of the city’s elected officials announced their candidacies for the position within hours of each other: At-Large School Committee member Devin Sheehan and At-Large City Councilor Rebecca Lisi.”

– “’Army Of Vaccinators’ Being Trained In Worcester,” The Associated Press: “Worcester is gearing up for a massive effort to administer coronavirus vaccines to first responders who work in the city and several surrounding communities, officials say.”

– “Cronin, Kilcoyne and Kushmerek, newcomers in state Legislature, lay out visions,” by Marco Cartolano, Telegram & Gazette: “Three new faces from Central Massachusetts were among the members of the state Legislature sworn in at Beacon Hill on Wednesday.”

– “Significant increase in opioid-related overdoses on Cape Cod blamed on COVID-19,” by Denise Coffey, Cape Cod Times: “People who work on the front lines of the opioid epidemic on Cape Cod say isolation caused by COVID-19 lockdowns and social distancing protocols that limit access to 12-step and other meetings are part of what’s driving the increase.”

HAPPY BIRTHDAY – to former GOP candidate for Senate Kevin O’Connor.

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