News

V.P. Biden congratulates wrong man in Boston mayor’s race

V.P. Biden congratulates wrong man in Boston mayor’s race

WRONG NUMBER: V.P. Joe Biden calls the wrong Marty Walsh. Photo: Reuters

BOSTON (Reuters) – As he watched the returns in Boston’s most competitive mayoral race in two decades on Tuesday night, Marty Walsh’s cell phone rang.

“A 202 number popped up, and I picked it up. It was Vice President (Joe) Biden. He went right into it, ‘Congratulations, Marty, you son of a gun. You did it!’” Walsh recalled on Thursday. “I said, ‘Mr. Vice President, you have the wrong Marty Walsh.’”

Biden had intended to call labor activist and state Sen. Marty Walsh, who had just been elected mayor of Boston. Instead he was on the line with the Marty Walsh, president of Gateway Public Solutions, a public affairs consulting firm in Boston.

“He laughed, and he was great about it,” said non-Mayor-elect Walsh, who worked in the administration of Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and before that for Senator Edward M. Kennedy.

He has been getting calls for the other Marty Walsh for more than a decade, he said, and considers him a friend.

He was so used to the drill that he gave Biden the correct phone number, and the vice president signed off by saying, “Congratulations on not being the mayor,” according to Walsh.

This year the longest-serving mayor in the city’s history, Thomas Menino, decided not to seek reelection after 20 years in office. Incumbent mayors in Boston are rarely defeated.

Boston’s political scene is crowded with Democrats of Irish descent, illustrated by the fact that the losing candidate in Tuesday’s race, City Councilor John Connolly, also fit that description.

The consultant Marty Walsh said he was not sure that having a name doppelganger in City Hall would make his life any easier.

“I don’t think it’s going to help my parking situation at all,” he joked.

Recent Headlines

in Lifestyle

If you need a passport, prepare to wait

Fresh
passport

The State Department says its global database for issuing travel documents has crashed, causing major delays for travelers.

in Music

Jason Aldean fan found dead after concert

Fresh
aldean

The 22-year-old's body was discovered after the concert in a local landfill among trash from the stadium.

in Music

Alan Jackson lands Country Music Hall exhibit

Fresh
alanjackson

Beginning on Aug. 29, fans will be able to visit the exhibition chronicling his rise to fame.