By Alison Kuznitz | email@example.com
September 8, 2022
Republican state auditor candidate Anthony Amore now boasts two gubernatorial endorsements as he prepares to battle Democratic state Sen. Diana DiZoglio in the general election cycle.
Amore, the security director of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, nabbed the support of former Gov. Jane Swift on Thursday, two days after the sole Republican candidate looking to succeed retiring state Auditor Suzanne Bump secured the GOP nomination.
With Democrats poised to take the Executive Branch in November, a two-party system is critical for protecting all citizens and providing checks and balances, Swift said during a press conference Thursday afternoon. As Swift sees it, Amore will not be beholden to any party or person, the former governor said as she lauded his private sector experience.
A former U.S. Department of Homeland Security official, Amore entered the primary with an endorsement from outgoing Republican Gov. Charlie Baker, who’s refused to endorse candidates in other statewide races, including for his successor in the corner office.
“I am very happy to join Gov. Baker and many of my fellow Republicans, independents and Democrats around the commonwealth, from the furthest corner of the commonwealth of Williamstown where I live to the tip of the Cape in endorsing Anthony Amore,” Swift told reporters outside the Massachusetts State House in Boston. “I hope that folks will pay attention to these down-ballot races, that they will come out and vote on Election Day, and that they will recognize that Anthony is both the most qualified and the most independent voice and independent person running to be our next auditor.”
Swift said she would not be making additional endorsements for GOP statewide candidates.
Should he win his bid, Amore has vowed to audit the Office of the State Auditor and bolster its transparency, including making audit reports more publicly accessible online. Urging for a change to state law, Amore wants the authority to audit the Massachusetts Legislature — or pursue a ballot referendum to state residents that would “make the Legislature subject to the public records laws, open meeting laws, and audits by the State Auditor,” according to his campaign website.
Bump’s office is slated to release a report later this month outlining whether Massachusetts has surpassed a to-be-determined tax revenue threshold that would then trigger income tax returns to Bay Staters.
If Bump refuses to comply with the obscure 1986 state statute that scrambled a massive tax relief and economic development bill on Beacon Hill at the end of the legislative session, Amore said he and a taxpayer coalition are prepared to sue her. A similar effort has been waged by the conservative-leaning Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance.
Bump told MassLive last month that her office’s assessment of the Chapter 62F, the statute at issue, would be released on or before Sept. 20.
“Despite the histrionics of some parties, this determination is not a political one,” Bump had said in a statement. “It is based on verifiable numbers and the law. Per MGL c. 62f section 5, the auditor’s role is clearly defined and we will comply with all statutory requirements as we have every year.”
Amore said Thursday he’s concerned that Bump has not certified the report already.
“I don’t see any reason why she doesn’t do it today,” Amore said as he noted the Department of Revenue has released updated financial information needed for Bump’s determination. “Sept. 20 is the statutory limit, but there’s no reason that this shouldn’t be expedited so that the money can come back to taxpayers.”
Bump’s pick for auditor, transportation advocate Chris Dempsey, lost to DiZoglio, a Methuen Democrat. With nearly all ballots tallied, DiZoglio garnered 363,438 votes to Dempsey’s 304,159, according to unofficial election results.
DiZoglio, who emphatically opposes taxpayer-funded non-disclosure agreements, has pledged to audit the Legislature and MBTA.
“Every wasted dollar is another child’s future opportunities at risk, another person who goes without housing or healthcare, or another unrealized climate change initiative,” DiZoglio told MassLive in a primary candidate questionnaire. “We need bold, meaningful change.”