The Endorsements Start For Marty Walsh

John Barros and Felix Arroyo weigh in on the mayoral race.

John Barros and Felix Arroyo are endorsing Marty Walsh for mayor today. Neither is a huge surprise: Barros, of Dorchester, has known Walsh a long time, while Arroyo has a notoriously bad relationship with John Connolly. Still, both have a reputation to maintain among their supporters, and would not risk that if they didn’t believe in Walsh—and it’s that perception of integrity that makes both endorsements valuable. Few voters are likely to decide based on these endorsements, but many will now give Walsh a second look—particularly minorities and progressives who might otherwise have dismissed him as an old-Boston pol.

Walsh is getting, and will continue to get, other endorsements of this stereotype-busting nature. Arroyo is a very good one. State Senator Linda Dorcena Forry, who I’m told is likely to endorse Walsh, would be another A-lister. Less well-known to the wide public, but extremely credible to the LGBT community, is political consultant Arline Isaacson, who was the lead gay-marriage lobbyist in the state.

Today’s announcements are going to get bulldozed by the breaking school bus drivers story, but that’s OK. The endorsements will find their way to the intended voters in time. They should help to get Walsh a second look from a lot of voters who might not otherwise have considered him. It’s still up to Walsh to win their votes, but at least he’ll have the chance to persuade them.