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In Massachusetts governor's race, Cahill running mate endorses rival Baker

By Felicia Sonmez

Massachusetts independent gubernatorial candidate Tim Cahill's running mate, Paul Loscocco (I), is dropping off the independent ticket and endorsing Cahill's Republican rival, former Harvard Pilgrim Health Care CEO Charlie Baker, a move that deals Cahill a major blow in his bid to unseat Gov. Deval Patrick (D).

"I ran to have a spirited debate on the issues and to advocate for new ways to create jobs, lower taxes, protect personal freedoms, and fight for the principles of Ronald Reagan who inspired me to become a Republican as a young man," Loscocco says in a statement he is scheduled to deliver later today.

"The primary between the Independent ticket and Republican ticket in the hearts and minds of the voters who want a change from Governor Patrick is now over. Charlie Baker and [Baker's running mate] Richard Tisei have prevailed over Tim Cahill and me," Loscocco added.

Loscocco, a former Republican state representative, dropped his party affiliation when he announced in January that he was joining Cahill, a former Democrat and current state treasurer, on the independent ticket. Massachusetts is one of about two dozen states in which candidates for governor and lieutenant governor run as a team on the same ticket.

The announcement comes as a Boston Globe poll released earlier this week showed Baker pulling even with Patrick, thanks in part to an advertising blitz against Patrick launched by the Republican Governors Association. Patrick took 35 percent to Baker's 34 percent among likely voters in the poll, while Cahill took 11 percent.

Loscocco pushed back earlier this year against rumors that he had been seeking a spot as Baker's running mate. Baker eventually chose state Senate minority leader Richard Tisei, who would become the state's first openly gay lieutenant governor if elected.

Cahill had sought to gain traction in the race by running to Baker and Patrick's right on fiscal issues. Loscocco's departure now deals Cahill a major setback in the race.

By Felicia Sonmez  | October 1, 2010; 10:05 AM ET
Categories:  Governors  
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Next: Senate playing field shifts but GOP still poised for major gains

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