Is she a dope?
Green-Rainbow Party gubernatorial candidate Jill Stein has failed to qualify for up to $519,000 in public funding, a setback for her struggling candidacy but one that gives Governor Deval Patrick a boost.
Failed to qualify? Indications from her campaign had been that she would have no problem.
Stein, who needed to submit $125,000 in qualifying donations by last Friday's deadline, fell short by just $3,000, according to Brad Balzer, deputy director of the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance. Candidates have to prove they can raise a certain amount of money on their own before getting public money.
Three thousand dollars short? Charlie Baker would have given her $3,000!
With her now ineligible for public funds, state Treasurer Timothy P. Cahill, who has qualified for the money and will not have to divide the pool of funds with her, will get an infusion of $750,000 for his independent campaign.
Can Tim drop out once he gets the money?
The news is a blow to Stein's hopes of mounting a serious third-party bid. In 2002, she received less than 4 percent of the vote when she ran in a race that included nominees of both major parties and two other minor-party candidates. Stein also failed to qualify for public funds that year.
This is potentially good news for Deval Patrick, although the socialists for whom Deval is too mainstream will likely be more eager to vote for Stein when they know she can't function in a free market system.
Stein's falling short of qualifying also will add produce some public funding for Attorney General Martha Coakley, and state auditor candidates Suzanne Bump, the Democrat, and Mary Connaughton, the Republican, all of whom have submitted enough qualifying donations. They will divide up the remaining $288,000 of the total $1,038,000 that was appropriated this year to provide public funding. In addition, state campaign regulators are determining whether William C. Campbell, the Republican nominee for secretary of state, may also be eligible for those funds.