GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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October 23, 2013

Coakley prosecutor is first to jump into AG's race

BOSTON — Sparking a so-far dormant race, state prosecutor Maura Healey has announced that she will seek Massachusetts’ top law enforcement job, running as a Democrat to succeed her boss Attorney General Martha Coakley.

Healey, former chief of the business and labor bureau and the public protection and advocacy bureau, resigned from the attorney general’s office last week to pursue her campaign, becoming the first official entrant in the race with her Monday announcement.

A New Hampshire native with family roots in Newburyport, Healey said in an interview that she wants the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office to “lead the nation as a top public law firm.”

Largely unknown to the general public, Healey has never run for public office but brings a legal resume to the race she will work to build off, including her role as the architect of the state’s challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act.

“I realize as a first-time candidate I have my work cut out for me, but I’m really looking forward to working really hard and getting out all across the state to talk to people about the role of the attorney general and to hear from them, their concerns and how we together can make Massachusetts a better place,” Healey told the News Service in an interview on Beacon Hill.

Coakley is leaving the attorney general’s office after two terms to run for governor, but Healey won’t be alone in the race for long. Rep. Harold Naughton, a Clinton Democrat who initially had his sights set on the lieutenant governor’s race, recorded a campaign announcement video over the weekend that he is expected to release Thursday morning, according to an adviser.

Healey’s confirmed entry and any move by Naughton is expected to perk up a race that had not drawn a committed candidate until Healey’s announcement. And among the other names bandied about has been that of Gloucester Republican Bruce Tarr, the state Senate Minority Leader.

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