You can read a transcript of the entire podcast here.
Hi, this is Anna Callahan and you’re listening to Incorruptible Massachusetts. Our goal is to help people understand state politics: we’re investigating why it’s so broken, imagining what we could have here in MA if we fixed it, and reporting on how you can get involved.
Today I’m interviewing Representative Jonathan Hecht.
Jon Hecht has been State Representative from Watertown and Cambridge since 2009. His current legislative priorities include climate change, transportation, and public health. He has been a leader in efforts to promote transparency in the legislative process and sponsored independent citizen review of major ballot questions in 2016 and 2018.
Rep Hecht has been a representative for ten years, so he has a very clear, insightful view on what is wrong in our State House and how that has changed over time. You’ll hear him compare our current State House to what it was like 20 years ago (and that’s somewhat horrifying!), and he also compares it to legislatures in other states. Spoiler alert — the concentration of power in the MA State House is, in his words, “beyond parallel.” Rep Hecht is not only willing to disagree with the speaker, he’s willing to talk about why it’s so important for representatives to disagree with the speaker, and all of the mechanisms in use to prevent that healthy debate. It’s a fascinating take from someone who has been leading the fight on these issues as well as on climate change for many years.
Without further ado, here is my interview with Rep Jonathan Hecht.