Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday the Massachusetts National Guard was ready to deploy over the weekend to deal with dozens of scheduled protests, but was not needed.
"We heard from a number of municipal officials who asked us if we would have people available to support them if those events turned out to be bigger than what they would be able to manage on their own," Baker said.
Baker said there were "somewhere between 45 and 50 events of one type or another" posted to social media sites at the end of last week that lead town and city officials to request potential National Guard deployment. The weekend's events were orderly and no deployments were made, according to Baker.
"The great thing about this is everybody came out, they did their thing, their voices were heard. We didn't hear from any municipal officials, and after we didn't hear from them, we deactivated [the Guard]," Baker said.
Baker also said that he voted for Republican Kevin O'Connor in Tuesday's primary and that he mailed his ballot early since he did not know if he'd be able to get to his Swampscott polling place on Election Day. O'Connor faces Shiva Ayyadurai in the race for the Republican nomination.
Baker said the mail-in balloting law put in place by the legislature this year and executed by Secretary of State William Galvin "was the right way to do it."
"I think the integrity of the process with respect to how the state set it up is actually quite high," Baker said.
The governor, along with Lt. Gov. Kayrn Polito, Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack and MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak were outside the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston to celebrate the MBTA's 123rd birthday as well as the re-opening of portions of the Green Line that were shut down for rapid repairs during the month of August.
Instead of shutting down the Green Line's E Branch most weekends for one year, work crews had 28 straight days to repair three miles of outdated track, replace road and pedestrian crossings, wash stations and manage overgrown vegetation.
"The 28 days of work that we were able to do allowed us to avoid a year's worth of weekend shutdowns to get this work done," Poftak said.
Baker said the pandemic allowed the T to "take advantage of this time and the low ridership and the limited traffic to make upgrades to improve service and save taxpayer dollars along the way and get work done quickly."