By Smedley Butler
Elio Lorusso recently put out a mail piece slamming Iraq War veteran and Ward 1 Alderman Matt McLaughlin for “not doing enough for veterans.” He claimed he would do more for veterans but has no record to prove it.
McLaughlin served two tours in Iraq. He is the chair of veteran services. He helped select the new veteran service officer for the city.
He successfully advocated for veterans hiring preferences in Union Square zoning. He hosts events for Somerville veterans every Veterans Day. He honored Iraq and Afghanistan veterans with citations and encourages them to continue their service at home through community work.
He testified at the State House to support paid family medical leave for veterans. He worked at a non-profit helping homeless veterans find housing and employment. What has Lorusso done for veterans ever? How can he claim to support veterans when he is attacking the only veteran on the Board?
McLaughlin stood up to former Ward 1 Alderman Bill Roche when he abused his position as head of personnel for the city. Roche intentionally kept a veteran off the fire fighter list so a family member could get on.
McLaughlin fought for that veteran and as a result he realized his dream of becoming a firefighter. Now Roche is supporting Lorusso rather than own up to his own shameful behavior? How can Elio be pro veteran when he solicits the support of someone who actively attempted to crush the dreams of veterans?
How can Elio, a man who never served and has never done a thing for veterans, believe that he will do a better job than an actual veteran who has a long track record of supporting veterans?
This attitude is very symbolic of Lorusso’s overall campaign and his four previous failed attempts at office. Elio talks about how he is going to out perform someone committed to the community, but had never demonstrated his commitment once.
Elio’s attack on Matt’s veteran status is shameful. His supporters should be embarrassed to be associated with a man who would sink so low just to become alderman. Elio should name something, anything he has ever done for veterans.
If he can’t name anything he should apologize to McLaughlin and all veterans for using their honorable service for his political games.