Barnstable County Commissioner Ends Gubernatorial Exploratory Effort

BARNSTABLE – Barnstable County Commissioner Ron Beaty has announced that he is ending his exploratory effort into running for governor against fellow Republican Charlie Baker.

Beaty announced his potential candidacy in September, but in a statement issued Tuesday, said he was bowing out.

“At this time, I’m ending my GOP exploratory effort, and have decided NOT to seek to run against Charlie Baker for Governor of Massachusetts in 2018,” said Beaty in the statement.

“With that said, only God knows what the future may hold,” he said.

Beaty filed a “change of purpose” form with the Commonwealth’s Office of Campaign and Political Finance earlier this year.

That would have been the first official step in the process.

Beaty said in September that he was unhappy with Baker’s Republican credentials.

“For the last several months, longer even, I’ve spoken to a lot of conservative and moderate Republicans. There is a lot of dissatisfaction and a lot of people have lost confidence in Charlie Baker,” he said.

In emails between Beaty and the Office of Campaign and Political Finance, he clearly expressed his intention to remain in his commissioner’s seat regardless of whether he sought the state’s highest office.

Since his election last year to the county’s executive board, Beaty has earned admirers and enemies for his relentless pursuit of open meeting law violations, even against his own commission. He picked a very public fight with fellow Republican and 5th Barnstable District State Representative Randy Hunt over a parking space.

And then there’s the shark issue.

Beaty took some public heat for a proposal to bait and kill great white sharks off the Cape’s shores. His proposal was mocked, but Beaty said his supporters will say that at least he is putting solutions forward and starting a conversation.

“I think I question and I challenge the status quo and I think that is what we need to do. When I have the opportunity to explain my positions and proposals there’s a lot of positive feedback,” he said.

Most recently, Beaty caused a firestorm for criticizing the #MeToo movement on social media which has been used to raise awareness about sexual assault and abuse.

In his own social media post, Beaty previously called the campaign, “a bunch of nonsense, in my humble opinion.”

That prompted several weeks of protest at county commissioner meetings by those offended by his remarks.


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