This Week’s QUOTABLE QUOTES on Beacon Hill

By Bob Katzen

“The COVID-19 pandemic has caused immense financial harm to millions of families and borrowers. The Biden Administration’s debt cancellation plan will help prevent student loan borrowers from needlessly suffering even more pandemic-related economic harm, including the devastating cascade of harms that follow from default. We are calling on the Supreme Court to uphold the Secretary’s authority to provide much-needed relief to people across the country who have been affected by this unprecedented pandemic.”

—Acting Massachusetts Attorney General Elizabeth “Bessie” Dewar, on joining 21 other state attorneys general in submitting a 48-page brief to the nation’s high court, arguing that the Biden administration operated within the limits of its power when it moved last year to cancel up to $10,000 of student loan debt per person eligible borrowers and up to $20,000 for those who received Pell Grants.

“The governor has committed to electrifying the public fleet and will be evaluating the best methods and timeline for that transition.”
—Gov. Maura Healey’s press secretary Karissa Hand when asked why Gov. Healey is still being driven by state police in a 17 to 20 mile-per- gallon Ford Expedition that she used as attorney general.

“There’s a reason that people are paying so much in heating bills and electric bills. It’s because we’ve been hostage to the fossil fuel industry for so long.”
—Gov. Healey.

“We thought it was important for this, the first meeting, that it just be a meeting among the four of us. We have known each other and worked together, but in different capacities over the last many years and I think it is appropriate for this initial meeting, as we sit down and talk about the future and what we all want to accomplish together, for us to sit together. I certainly look forward to continued conversation and communication with minority leadership.”
— Gov. Healey on why she and Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll met with Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Ron Mariano and did not include Senate and House Republican Minority Leaders Sen. Bruce Tarr and Rep. Brad Jones. Former Gov. Baker included the two minority leaders in the group’s semi-weekly meetings.

“Regular, bipartisan leadership meetings have been one of the distinguishing hallmarks of a state government that operates in a collaborative way, with effective communication between its leaders. They have served us well during very challenging times and are as important now as ever. We look forward to the continuation of these conversations, which are powerful in symbol and substance, and to taking part in them as before. We stand ready to do whatever is necessary to facilitate that continuity.”
—Tarr and Jones in a joint statement in response to being left out of the meeting.

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