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We could reasonably expect that the NVA would support candidates for Alderman-at-Large who share their concerns about the Austin Street development. Whether they suggest that you bullet-vote for Lynne LeBlanc or also support Jake Auchincloss as an independent (progressive) thinker, their strategy is most clearly to knock incumbents Johnson and Albright off the Board of Aldermen. But, who is supporting incumbents Johnson and Albright? Are they friends of the developers in the City or are they supported by and open to hearing the wishes and thoughts of the people they represent? If you don’t really know or if you have any doubt about their leanings, let me tell you about a breakfast invitation to O’Hara’s sent out by the prominent and ubiquitous attorney for most of the 40B projects in this City to a long list of lawyers, developers (from Robert and Geoff Engler to Cabot, Cabot and Forbes), housing advocates, builders, architects, political lobbyists, local surveyors (Verne and Joe Porter), real estate professionals, insurers, supporters of Engine 6, and accountants in Newton. Over 100 people were invited with these words:

“Sent: Wednesday, August 26, 2015 10:59 AM Subject: Breakfast for Susan Albright and Marcy Johnson

There is a critical election in the Ward 2 Aldermanic race this year.

I hope that you can join us for breakfast on Wednesday, September 9th at O’Hara’s to meet Aldermen Susan Albright and Marcia Johnson, both incumbents who are seeking re-election. Susan and Marcy have dedicated themselves to improving the quality of life in Newton, and have been staunch supporters of housing opportunities for all and sound economic development in the City.

I hope to see you there.”

Note: I don’t know who attended or how much financial support was gathered. But, the most astute political aphorism by which one can judge bedfellows remains: “Follow the money!”

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