Amesbury, MA Mayor’s Hire of 19-year-old Chief of Staff Draws Ire

The Newburyport Daily News has a piece today about the new Mayor of Amesbury, Ken Gray and his recent hire of 19-year-old college sophomore as his “interim chief of staff.” Gray’s decision has drawn some criticism, the Newburyport Daily News reports.

While I tend to stay out of the small town political arena and commentary on it, in favor of national politics, however, I find this story begs commentary.

Mac Cerullo, staff writer for the Daily News notes Evan Kenney of Wakefield “is a rising and somewhat controversial star in the state Republican party.”

In 2012, he became a central player in a brouhaha that erupted over the nomination of Mitt Romney at the GOP convention. His efforts to buck the party’s establishment won him significant attention, culminating in a lengthy interview on the nationally televised “Rachel Maddow Show” on MSNBC.”

There was little more in the piece by Cerullo of Evan Kenney’s experience, in my opinion, that would lead me to feel this young man has the creds to garner such a job, even as an interim position.

Serving as a delegate is not really “working” in the poltical arena. Likewise, getting an interview on the Maddow Show because he acted in a controversial manner isn’t all that uncommon in the days of 24/7 news and the internet. Finally, Cerullo notes that Kenney served on his local school committee for a year (?); that is also not that impressive in the political realm.

I question, does Kenney have any business experience? Assisting the Mayor in running a small city is in many ways like running a business.

What other experience outside of the poltical realm does Kenney have? Is he studying politics or business in college?

Finally, I would suggest that Mayor Ken Gray wants to rise above partisan politics and work with everyone, as he has told the residents of Amesbury,  then he should be looking for an aide with moderate political views, not a 19-year-old partisan college student who advocated for guns in schools in the wake of Newtown.

We’re off to a great start in Amesbury with our new Mayor Gray… He’s already ordered a spending freeze since he took office, which could explains why our roads weren’t plowed as well in the most recent storm, as they have been in the past.

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