Massachusetts' Congressional delegation is made up entirely of Democrats. Attorney Kevin O'Connor is running for U.S. Senate as a Republican, challenging incumbent Sen. Edward Markey, in an effort to change that.
O'Connor made the argument on Boston Public Radio Monday that a delegation that includes a Republican like him could better advocate across the aisle for local issues.
"I look at the candidates who are running and I feel like they're the quintessential career politicans, and I don't think they're serving us well," O'Connor said. "I think Massachusetts is placed at a significant disadvantage by the fact that we have a one-party delegation. Every time the White House or any chamber of Congress is controlled by Republicans, we lose out. That's just bad, that's not healthy."
Markey has represented Massachusetts as a U.S. senator since 2013, and has served in Congress since 1976. He faces a primary challenge from fellow Democrat U.S. Rep. Joe Kennedy III, who has been the U.S. Representative for Massachusett's 4th district since 2013. Independent Shiva Ayyadurai, who ran in the 2018 Senate race, is also vying for the Republican nomination.
"On balance, I feel like this is a major fork in the road, in terms of the role government plays in our lives," said O'Connor. "It's critical for our children's future, I believe, that all organized activity begins with safety and safe comunities. I think my opponents are very different on that front. I believe our brightest days in terms of solving our problems will occur when we promote private sector innovation, whether that's in health care, whether that's environmentally, whether that's economically in technological developments. I'm a capitalist in this race, and probably the only one."
According to his campaign website, O'Connor believes "recent calls to defund the police are misguided," instead supporting "grant programs that encourage more training and support for officers on the street." In addition to his stance on other issues, his website also says O'Connor is against "[s]ocialized medicine ... [that] will increase costs and reduce the quality of care" and instead "favors increasing competition, expanding premium tax credits for middle-income families, and moving more subsidy-eligible individuals into Marketplace plans."
O'Connor said he supports President Donald Trump's re-election.