Saturday, September 24

Labor attorney Liss-Riordan scores major endorsements in final days of heated primary for attorney general

As the Democratic primary for attorney general heats up in the final days before the Sept. 6 election, labor attorney Shannon Liss-Riordan secured three prominent endorsements, raising the stakes in what is increasingly looking like a two-woman race.

Liss-Riordan’s campaign announced Friday evening that Senator Elizabeth Warren, Boston Mayor Michelle Wu, and former acting Boston mayor Kim Janey will endorse Liss-Riordan Saturday afternoon, on the first day of in-person early voting across the state.

In doing so, Wu and Janey snub their former colleague, former Boston City Councilor Andrea Campbell, who is also running for attorney general and has secured the endorsements of Massachusetts’ other Senator Edward J. Markey, as well as several members of Congress and current Attorney General Maura Healey, the presumptive Democratic nominee for governor.

Hours before Liss-Riordan’s endorsement event in front of the Boston Public Library in Copley Square, Campbell is scheduled to host her own event Saturday, an early voting kickoff with Healey and Representative Ayanna Pressley of Boston at a community center in Dorchester, just hours before Liss-Riordan’s endorsement event in front of the Boston Public Library in Copley Square.

The dueling events, and the competing high-powered endorsements on display, highlight the extent to which the Attorney General race has become the race to watch this political season, especially once Healey’s opponents in the Democratic gubernatorial race dropped out one by one. The AG primary contest has narrowed in recent days, with recent polling showing Liss-Riordan and Campbell in a near dead heat.

While Campbell polled ahead of Liss-Riordan for months, the labor attorney — bolstered by substantial, largely self-financed spending on direct mail, radio, and TV ads — has surged in the last few months.

According to a recent poll of likely voters by MassINC Polling Group, Campbell, who retained name recognition from her unsuccessful Boston mayoral campaign last year, leads Liss-Riordan by just two percentage points — 28 percent to 26 percent — well within the poll’s margin of error. Quentin Palfrey, a former assistant attorney general and the Democrats’ 2018 lieutenant gubernatorial candidate, drew just 10 percent.

The poll also found that a third of voters haven’t made up their minds in the race.

The new endorsements show a split of typical alliances, with Warren departing from Pressley, who has been in the trenches with the Senator in fighting for student loan forgiveness, and Healey, who she has endorsed in her race for governor and has worked alongside to take on predatory student loan servicers.

In a tweet, Warren called Liss-Riordan “a progressive champion” who “knows how to fight back and win against corporations and special interests that take advantage of working families.”

“I’m proud to endorse her to be the next attorney general of Massachusetts,” she wrote.

Campaign finance records show that Liss-Riordan has supported Warren in her past races. In 2017, Liss-Riordan and her husband, Kevin, each made $5,400 contributions to Warren’s political committee as well as $4,400 in donations to her campaign. In 2019, Liss-Riordan donated $2,800 to Warren’s presidential election campaign. Liss-Riordan donated $35,500 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in 2020, and donated $10,000 more in 2022.