Earlier this year I invited all of the City Council candidates to my house for a casual dinner. I did the same thing in 2005. I see it as a chance for everyone to get to know each other, to build some camaraderie, and a chance to trade thoughts and ideas. Also, especially for first time candidates, it is a chance to tell them some of the tricks of the trade (not that I am any expert) on who the members of the press are, what they can expect from City Hall, where to gather signatures, etc.
I go in with the notion that everyone who runs for office has some altruistic reasons and goals until they prove otherwise. I believe that we all need to be civil and try and work things out, and that by sharing a meal and a drink that is a good start down that road.
When we had the get together earlier this spring, we talked about who people thought would be the City Councilors at large at the end of the year. Many people had different ideas, some people thought Steve Murphy might be vulnerable, everyone (Good for them!) could see a path to victory for themselves, and everyone agreed that John Connolly was guaranteed a spot.
I told them that Connolly, Murphy and Pressley were automatic and that the rest of them were vying for one seat. Some of them hadn't even heard of Pressley yet, but I told them they would, and that the media (especially the Globe) and the insiders would be making sure that she made it. Sure enough, she has been out cutting ribbons with the Mayor in West Roxbury, had fawning articles written about her in the Globe, and she has worked hard to warrant the attention.
The real surprise has been Felix Arroyo, Jr. who came in an amazing third. He has run a great campaign, run by his dad's old campaign manager Pat, and they have really got their base out there. He should be commended.
I've asked both Ayanna and Felix about where they stand on the BRA. Ayanna wouldn't answer the question, and Felix honestly answered that he didn't know much about it.
Barring a major revelation or surprise I don't see much chance for a change in the top four. I hope that Ayanna and Felix get up to speed fast on the most important agency dealing with the City of Boston.