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Roll Call looks at which senators sided with Baker on vetos

There were no roll calls in the House or Senate last week.

This week, Beacon Hill Roll Call reports on the number of times in the 2020 session each senator sided with Republican Gov. Charlie Baker and voted to sustain the governor’s 151 vetoes of items, mostly in the fiscal 2021 state budget. A vote to sustain means the senator supports Baker’s veto. A vote to override means the senator voted to fund the item despite the governor’s veto.

A two-thirds vote is required to override a gubernatorial veto in a full 40-member Senate when there are no vacancies. The governor needed the support of 14 senators to sustain a veto if all 40 senators voted — and fewer votes if some members were absent or there were vacancies.

Baker fell far short of that goal as eight votes was the most support he received on any veto. The Senate easily overrode all 151 vetoes, including 11 that were overridden unanimously.

The vetoes had no support from 26 of the 35 Democrats, who never once voted to sustain Baker’s veto. Only nine Democratic senators voted to sustain any of the governor’s vetoes. The three senators who voted the most times with Baker to sustain his veto are Sens. James Eldridge, D-Acton 19 times (12.5% of the time); Sonia Chang-Diaz, D-Boston, 17 times (11.2% of the time); and Becca Rausch, D-Needham, 11 times (7.2% of the time). The other six Democratic senators from that group of nine only sided with Baker once or twice.

None of the four Republicans voted with Baker 100% of the time. The Republican senator who voted the greatest number of times with Baker was former Sen. Dean Tran, R-Fitchburg: 132 times (87.4% of the time). The GOP senator who voted with Baker the least number of times was Sen. Patrick O’Connor, R-Weymouth: one time (0.6% of the time).

Even GOP Minority Leader Bruce Tarr, R-Gloucester, supported Baker only 22 times (14.5% of the time) while Sen. Ryan Fattman, R-Sutton, voted with Baker 75 times (49.6% of the time).

Tarr and Eldridge come from different ends of the political spectrum with Tarr to the right and Eldridge to the left. But interestingly, they supported the governor almost an equal number of times: Tarr 22 times and Eldridge 19 times.



Here is how your senator fared in his or her support of Baker on the vetoes.

The percentage next to the senator’s name represents the percentage of times the senator supported Baker. The number in parentheses represents the actual number of times the senator supported Baker.

Some senators voted on all 151 roll call votes. Others missed one or more of the 151 votes. Each record is based on the number of roll calls on which a senator voted and does not count the roll calls for which he or she was absent.

Sen. Michael Barrett, 0% (0); Sen. James Eldridge, 12.5% (19); Sen. Barry Finegold, 0% (0); Sen. Cindy Friedman, 0% (0); Sen. Anne Gobi, 0% (0); Sen. Edward Kennedy, 0% (0); Sen. Bruce Tarr, 14.5% (22); Former Sen. Dean Tran, 87.4% (132).

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