About 75 people watched the Kennedy School ARCO Forum's giant sized television screen last night as it displayed the latest results of the various nationwide races with the impact of a closed circuit boxing match.
During the evening, a panel of four professional politicos treated the crowd to commentary and analysis. Paul Nace, former chief secretary to Lt. Gov. Thomas P. O'Neill Jr., moderated the panel's discussion of both local and national elections.
Focusing on the Hatch-King race for governor, Thomas Joyce, a political activist in New Jersey and New York, said he was sure King would win "in spite of himself," citing King's strength in small towns around the state.
Joyce also said King's election was helped by the fact that some Republicans crossed over to King. "He represents the conservative businessman's approach to government--they see him as a savior," Joyce said.
Nace, who called the governor's election "the race of the mental midgets," said he thought King was "not winning on what he stands for, but because Tip O'Neill came in to hold his hand up and stop the bleeding. He had a lot of support."
One prominent democrat who did not support King was Sen. Edward M. Kennedy. The panel agreed that Kennedy's support was one of the strongest factors in Rep. Paul D. Tsongas' election to the Senate. Tsongas, unlike King, was willing to support Kennedy's National Health Insurance plan without reservation. "So Kennedy went on T.V. for him," Joyce said, adding "those areas where Kennedy is effective will show tonight in Tsongas' returns."
Alice Wolf, a member of the Cambridge School Committee, discussed the classification amendment, saying the most important factor in its passage was the money Boston put in to spotlight the problems of 100 percent valuation. "That publicity turned the situation around and made it possible for classification to win," Wolf said.