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Tolg/My Turn: Can’t separate Isaac Mass from his politics

Isaac Mass, who is running for an at-large seat on the Greenfield Town Council does not talk about his past very much. This, for good reason. He has endorsed a parade of dubious Republican candidates in Franklin County and beyond.

On the other hand, he has worked against Elizabeth Warren, John Olver, Barack Obama, and Deval Patrick! It was Isaac Mass who co-chaired the Franklin County John McCain for President Committee to defeat Barack Obama. And in August of 2008, he called McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin for vice president “an inspired choice” and praised her “blue collar roots.”

Isaac traveled to the Republican National Convention in 2000 where he voted for George W. Bush, who lost by a large margin to Al Gore in Franklin County. About eight years ago, Mass ran unsuccessfully as a Republican for Franklin County Register of Deeds.

In that endeavor, he was endorsed by Republican Kerry Healey, Mitt Romney’s running mate, who was a cheerleader for merging Greenfield Community College and Holyoke Community College. Isaac came in last in that race with 23 percent of the vote.

Mass has a long resume as a conservative Republican operative in Franklin County, issuing press releases for candidates who were soundly defeated, including Scott Brown who lost to Elizabeth Warren by more than 2-to-1 in Greenfield.

In 2008, he gave $300 to the Massachusetts Republican State Congressional Committee and $200 to the McCain committee. Why recite his past performances? In politics, who you support says a lot about who you are.

As a Republican zealot, Isaac Mass has pushed a right-wing agenda in a town that has overwhelmingly rejected his candidates, such as Brown, McCain, Romney and Healey. Mass has served on the Platform Committee of the state Republican Party — the party that this year issued a very conservative anti-abortion and anti-gay-marriage platform. Some prominent Republicans have denounced this agenda, but not Isaac.

If we put Isaac in office, this is the kind of politics we can expect to get from him. You may hear that the Town Council race is “nonpartisan” but this is a bit of nice fiction. With or without political labels, I submit that Isaac Mass, and his conservative-to-reactionary past, has not changed.

He has aspirations for elected office much higher than Greenfield. Mass is carefully keeping his Republican history out of his campaign literature — hoping that we will not remember him as the man who called Palin an “inspired choice.”

For more than 20 years, Isaac Mass has promoted conservative, if not regressive, candidates in a town, Greenfield, that has rejected those candidates and his political beliefs. The issues, the candidates, and the general political philosophy he endorses are not in his press releases — but they speak volumes about his real politics.

In conclusion, I don’t think Mass would make a good fit in the Town Council or would be a positive addition to the council.

Tom Tolg is a Greenfield resident.

Speaking of talking about the past... Curious minds want to know whatever happened with Tulane University and his stint in the ROTC. Seems those would be things that an upstanding young Republican with political aspirations would be proud to put on his resume. I'd also like to have a heart-to-heart with him on the issues of womens' rights and domestic abuse prevention, both issues that are important to Greenfield residents. It's easy to write a nicely worded and formal statement but it's time that Mr. Mass gets down to the nitty gritty and tells us, the voters, something meaningful.

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