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The Sun Chronicle – Markey gains endorsement in city

When U.S. Rep. Ed Markey started his political career in the Massachusetts House in the 1970s, he was a political ally of Max Volterra of Attleboro.

One of the reforms they championed was the elimination of part-time judges who also practiced law, a situation Volterra said was rife with abuse and conflicts of interest.

When Markey got a bill ending the practice passed in the Massachusetts House over the objections of then-House Speaker Tom McGee, the speaker punished Markey by evicting him from his Statehouse office.

McGee had Markey’s work desk placed in the hallway.

The move by McGee made Markey a hero to reformers and helped fuel his successful run for Congress in 1976.

“The speaker thought that would break Ed, but no, Eddie rode it all the way to Washington,” Volterra told a cheering crowd at Morin’s restaurant in Attleboro Saturday.

Volterra said the incident was indicative of the political courage Markey has shown throughout his career.

Markey and Volterra were together again Saturday because Markey is now running in the special election for U.S. Senate and brought his campaign to Attleboro.

About 75 Democratic activists crowded into the backroom pub at Morin’s as Markey made a swing through Southeastern Massachusetts, including Taunton, New Bedford and Attleboro.

The event included the unscheduled and unexpected endorsement of Markey by state Rep. Paul Heroux, D-Attleboro.

Heroux said he had intended to stay neutral in Markey’s primary race against U.S. Rep. Steven Lynch, but after hearing Markey speak, he decided to back him.