Baker won’t seek third term as governor

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito and Gov. Charlie Baker walk past the podium at a State House news conference, Friday, May 29. _ Sam Doran/SHNS/File

Gov. Charlie Baker, a two-term Republican who at his peak was one of the most popular governors in the country, will not seek a third term, throwing wide open the 2022 race for the state’s top political office, after close to two years of managing through a global pandemic, according to the State House News Service.

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, who was widely considered to be the heir to the Baker political legacy, has also decided against a run for governor in 2022, dramatically reshaping the contest on the Republican side, and, perhaps, clearing a path for Attorney General Maura Healey to enter the race on the Democratic side, the news service reported.

“After several months of discussion with our families, we have decided not to seek re-election in 2022. This was an extremely difficult decision for us. We love the work, and we especially respect and admire the people of this wonderful commonwealth. Serving as governor and lieutenant governor of Massachusetts have been the most challenging and fulfilling jobs we’ve ever had. We will forever be grateful to the people of this state for giving us this great honor,” Baker and Polito said in a joint statement.

Republican Geoff Diehl, a former state lawmaker, has already entered the race for his party’s nomination, with the endorsement of former President Donald Trump, and three Democrats — Harvard Professor Danielle Allen, former state Sen. Ben Downing, and Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz — are also running, according to the State House News service.

Baker would have been the first governor in recent memory to run for three terms. The last governor to serve three four-year terms was Democrat Michael Dukakis, though his terms were nonconsecutive.


  1. I am a registered independent voter who has voted Democratic 90% of the time in recent years. …. Gov. Charlie Baker was in that 10% of Republicans I considered a good, hard working, considerate, well balanced governor. I was disappointed to hear he won’t be running for office again.

    A government with all Republicans or Democrats would not work. Like it or not, a government that uses checks and balances, and that has thoughtful folks who are “yeah “ and “naysayers”, are the best governing combination.

    Having said that, I could never vote for someone who Trump endorsed… that would be asking for trouble!

  2. I am neither a dem or rep but I think Charlie Baker is a man of common sense and did an outstanding job as governor, especially his handling of the covid crisis. Don’t make yourself believe he did a lousy job just because he’s a republican. Thats the problem with this country, no bipartisanship. Thank you for your public service Mr. Baker.

    • Carl, my guess is that most dems like Baker. It’s the republicans who don’t like him because he is not a crazy trump sycophant and all that goes along with that.

  3. I am fully on the left of the political spectrum, but I pay attention. I base my decisions on what I hear and see, not what some propogandist with an agenda tells me what someone thinks. I cant stand it when I see comments here from someone telling me what I think, or listen to hate radio or fox “news”. They get ratings by berating liberals and claim the liberals hate America, want open borders and socialism etc — Sorry to those who hate NPR, but NPR does not do that.. I do not vote straight party lines. I voted for Baker both times he ran and think he was a great governor. I still want to hear from Althea or anyone else about what he did wrong.
    I know, he didn’t suck up to trump. so he’s a rino..
    I guess that’s a problem for some people.
    I would vote for Baker for president, and it would not be the first time I voted for a republican for president. — Ford.. BECAUSE he pardoned Nixon. I had no love for Nixon but I was impressed that Ford put the partisan BS aside and had the leadership to do what he thought was best for the country.

    • Keller, I have sparred with you for almost 15 years and know your views on almost all subjects as you do mine. Of course I tell you what you think because I know how you think and your ideological prism. I might get one out of 20 wrong but mostly I am going to be correct about you as you are me. Isnt that right? Interestingly you voted for Ford and I voted for Carter because Ford told us on National TV three times that Poland is free. I thought what an idiot. In congress for all those years and doesnt know Poland is under the communist boot. Only time I voted for a Democrat and what a mistake that was but I was only 32 years old then.

      • I would hope that whatever your opinion came to be of Mr. Carter as president, that you would agree that he is a fine, upstanding gentleman of the caliber we rarely see any more.

      • Interesting– I had no regrets voting for Ford. I of course voted for Carter the second time he ran.
        But I will disagree with your assessment that you know what I think. You are at best 60-40. Certainly no where near 95 %.
        The first time we met face to face, you were shocked that I did not think that organic food had more nutritional value than foods that were sprayed with chemicals. And you have been wrong about me ever since.
        We humans are complicated. We all have a lens that we look through, we all have biases.
        You know that. I know that. We all know that
        But one difference between you and I is that I do not project my biases and falsely pontificate about the opinions and beliefs of large groups of people who have a different opinion than I do.
        I won’t project about what you or anyone else thinks , Andrew.
        That would be rude, arrogant, and most likely incorrect.
        I have no moral right to publicly state that someone else thinks this or that about this or that. Of course, we have freedom of speech in this country– So you can legally tell everyone on this site what I think. And you more often than not be wrong.
        I have a moral obligation to let others speak for themselves.

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