Runner for Tip's Seat Speaks to Club

Short Takes

One of the first contenders to announce his candidacy for the retiring Thomas P. O'Neill's Congressional seat last night told the Harvard Democratic Club that the decline of American society prompted him to enter the race.

"The past five years have been the beginning of the end of American life," said Vin McCarthy, an attorney from Boston's South End. "Ultimately, the voters are going to have to realize they need someone who can do an extraordinary job of trying to redirect American Society."

McCarthy cited the government's inability to solve problems involving housing, education, foreign policy, and economic development as evidence of the nation's decline.

He told the Eliot House gathering of about 25 undergraduates that he would make a special effort to in volve students in his campaign because the eighth congressional district encompasses 31 colleges and universities.

McCarthy, who graduated from Boston College and the Harvard Graduate School of Education, said people used to joke that the U.S. government came from Cambridge. "Frankly," he said, "I'd like to see that happen again"