Had enough? Citizens, take back your government!

Governor ignores official Council vote - will install radical lesbian activist as Mass. family court judge. Supported by both Boston newspapers.

The political sleaze continues.

June 11, 2008

Maureen Monks, about to become the newest judge of the Middlesex Probate and Family Court, is a long-time radical lesbian activist attorney. She specializes in "gay" family issues. Last week, when her nomination hit some rocky waters getting through the Governor's Council, Governor Deval Patrick simply ignored their official vote and announced he will swear her in. Monks' nomination - and the governor's action -- was strongly supported by both the Boston Globe and Boston Herald on their editorial pages.

Probate and family court is very sensitive and important for families. And it's capable of doing terrible damage. Just ask anyone in the fathers' rights movement in Massachusetts. This is a very important type of judgeship.

How bad is she?

Among Monks' sterling qualifications:

  • Former co-chair and founding member of the Massachusetts Lesbian and Gay Bar Association (MLGBA)

  • Board of Directors of the far-left Massachusetts Law Reform Institute

  • Pro bono counsel for Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD)

  • Partner in The Women's Law Collective, Cambridge, MA.

"Maureen will be a phenomenal addition to the bench. MLGBA is very proud to call her a member and a friend," fellow Mass. Lesbian and Gay Bar Association member David Eppley told the homosexual newspaper Bay Windows.

But Governor's Councillor Mary-Ellen Manning did her homework. Her public statement brings up even more difficulties with Monks:

"While [Maureen Monks'] agenda in favor of women in divorce was telegraphed in even a cursory reading of her resume, her attempts at hiding her agenda are of more concern. First, we needed to overcome embellishments to her resume, such as her claims of participation in the creation and initial design of the award-winning Women's Bar Foundation Pro Bono Family Law Project. Second, we had to ignore an intentional omission from her resume -- teaching same-sex marriage concepts to high school students. Third, we must accept her distancing herself from the meaning behind the naming of the Women's Law Collective, at which she was a partner for twenty hears as a nothing more than "inherited" nomenclature.

"When questioned about her representation of men versus women in divorce matters, she answered that she represented 65% women and 35% men in those cases. A review of the scheduled appearances at the relevant counties revealed quite a different ratio. With dozens of appearances in the last eight years, she has represented only one man in a divorce. In her Governor's Council questionnaire, she stated that she has "represented hundreds of women and men in divorce." No doubt she has represented hundreds of women--as for the men?

"Finally, Attorney Monks' divorce was filed, finalized and impounded in one day, sealed from view. How could this candidate possibly have been vetted properly when her public filings were sealed from public view while her application was pending before the Judicial Nominating Commission?"

Read Counsellor Mary-Ellen Manning's full statement here

(Mary-Ellen Manning, the District 5 Councillor, is by far the most "sane" member of the elected Governor's Council and deserves a LOT of gratitude from all of us for courage, hard work, and willingness to tell the truth under fire.)

Here's how it happened

On April 29 it was announced that Gov. Patrick had nominated Monks for the position. On Wednesday, May 21, the Governor's Council interviewed her with some spirited questioning by some of the councilors about her resume and activities, according to State House News.

On May 27 the Council met and voted. According to news reports, there was a voice vote that went 5-2 in favor of Monks. But then Mary-Ellen Manning arrived late and voted 'no'. After that, Councillor Marilyn Devaney switched her vote, deadlocking it into a 4-4 tie. That 4-4 vote was recorded in the Council's official register. Lt. Governor Tim Murray was present but did not vote, so by normal rules the vote would have failed.

On July 3, after a week of thinking about what to do, the governor announced that he would consider initial the 5-3 vote as "official", and go ahead and install Monks as a judge.  "After review, the administration has determined that the confirmation of Maureen Monks by the affirmative vote of five councillors stands," administration spokesman Kyle Sullivan said "This vote is reflected in the Governor's Council's minutes and its taped recording of the assembly. We are delighted with this outstanding nomination and look forward to a thoughtful, impartial administration of justice throughout her tenure."

There's only small problem: the Massachusetts Constitution, which says that the official register - not a voice vote or anything else - is what counts.

"The resolutions and advice of the council shall be recorded in a register, and signed by the members present . . . "
- Massachusetts Constitution  Chapter II, Section III. Article V.

(Interesting State House News article from June 2)

But Massachusetts politicians haven't paid attention to the Constitution for years, so why should they start now?

Boston's major newspapers in the tank

It truly sickens one to see how both the Boston Globe and Boston Herald distorted and twisted the facts about the situation.

On June 6 the Boston Globe wrote a scathing editorial attacking the Governor's Council as "just a sideshow" and praising Monks.

"Maureen H. Monks is a well-regarded Cambridge attorney, a recipient of a Massachusetts Bar Association 'access to justice' award for her volunteer work with battered women's groups and the indigent. . . This latest performance nearly derailed a distinguished legal career."
Read entire Globe editorial

Then on June 9 the Boston Herald published its own editorial with an even nastier blast:

"If we can't permanently padlock the Governor's Council chamber - as we would dearly love to do - the next best thing is to have the Patrick administration get a firm grip on this merry band of mischief-makers," said the Herald's editorial. They described the four dissenting votes as "the shenanigans of a handful of councilors". [NOTE: Of course, some people would call that democracy.]
Read entire Herald editorial

Forget about constitutional government in Massachusetts, folks. It's going down fast. And just imagine what family courts will be like with Monks as a judge.

Do something!

Tell the Governor NOT to thumb his nose at our Constitution:

     Phone: 617.725.4005  Governor's email form

Write a letter to the Editor of the Globe and Herald:

     Boston Globe: letter@globe.com

     Boston Herald: letterstoeditor@bostonherald.com

And by the way . . .

Don't be shocked that the "conservative" Boston Herald is so left-wing. We warned you about that back in 2006 when owner Pat Purcell named Kevin Convey as editor-in-chief. Convey, who proudly has a poster of the communist murderer Che Guevera on his Herald office wall, is an angry liberal through and through. Our personal experience dealing with Convey when he ran the Herald's Tab newspaper chain was that his anger and contempt of social conservatives was never hidden.

(Regarding the Governor's Council: All judges are appointed by the Governor and must be approved by the 8-member elected Governor's Council. Most of the time it's a shoo-in. But lately, they've been paying attention!)