After nearly two decades out of the public eye, Lexington resident Mike Barrett has his sights set on a state Senate seat and is touting an unlikely combination of experience and fresh ideas as a means to get him there.
Barrett, a former state legislator who left politics 17 years ago after unsuccessful bid for governor in the 1994 Democratic primary, has announced his candidacy for the 2012 Democratic nomination for the Third Middlesex state Senate seat currently held by Susan Fargo, a Lincoln Democrat.
On Wednesday, Barrett told Patch he feels now’s the right time to get back to politics because his kids are entering college, he’s in the right place in his career and the district needs a strong Democratic candidate to face a “credible” Republican challenge, potentially
“At this point in my life, I feel that I can give the ridiculous amount of time and effort it’s going to take,” said Barrett. “I’m hoping to be a unity candidate because we do face a credible Republican and I think we need a Democratic candidate at the top of his energy and ideas.”
Although he did not mention Fargo by name, Barrett said he anticipates facing a Democratic opponent and would run on his record against any challenger. (Read more about Barrett here.)
According to Fargo’s Chief of Staff, Don Siriano, the veteran senator plans to keep the seat she’s held since 1997 and confirmed her intention to do so recently on “Politically Incorrect,” a local access television program in Chelmsford.
“I’m assuming I’ll have to raise a lot of money and walk a lot of miles before this is done,” said Barrett. “I think it’s going to be a trench war. I think it’s going to be a very long road and anyone who walks down it will have to give 150 percent.”
According to his bio, Barrett has dealt with healthcare and information technology issues since leaving state politics 17 years ago. Additionally, he has served as a gubernatorial appointee to the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) and Lexington’s alternate representative to the Hanscom Field Advisory Committee.
That breadth of experience, Barrett says, is invaluable for a state senator representing this district, a hotbed of innovation and intellectual capital.
“The state Senator in this district should be casting a big shadow,” said Barrett. “We should have a larger than life state senator just to match the achievement level of the people who live here, and I’m looking to give voters a legislator who works as hard as they do.”