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Boston Herald: Edward Markey: Only Hillary Clinton can beat Donald Trump

Republican Donald Trump is “a formidable candidate” who can only be bested in the general election by Hillary Clinton, U.S. Sen. Edward J. Markey said yesterday as he stumped for the Democratic front-runner.

“I think the more real Donald Trump becomes as the potential nominee for the Republicans, the more real Democratic primary voters are becoming knowing we have to nominate a new president — not send a message to Washington, we have to send a president. And if you’re going to compete against a Donald Trump, you’re going to need somebody like a Hillary Clinton to take him on,” Markey said yesterday at the Boston headquarters of the New England Regional Council of Carpenters, where he was joined by union executive secretary Mark Erlich and Middlesex Sheriff Peter Koutoujian.

Markey, a Malden Democrat, said he’s “not at all” surprised reality TV star Trump’s campaign has 
become a juggernaut.

He “is a formidable candidate,” Markey said. “He understands the media. … If we’re going to be able to beat him, we’re going to need somebody like Hillary Clinton. And Massachusetts, I think, is going to … deliver her a victory on Tuesday night.”

When asked who might get Clinton’s nod to run as vice president, Markey said, “There’s a lot of good people whose names are being 
talked about, including Sen. Tim Kaine from the state of Virginia.” Markey insisted he’s “not interested in any Cabinet posts.”

Markey, Erlich and Koutoujian said they are backing the 68-year-old former first lady in large part because they believe she is best qualified to take on the nation’s opioid addiction crisis, which Markey said killed 30,000 people across America in 2014 — 1,300 of those deaths occurring here in Massachusetts. Koutoujian said last year alone, his medical staff had to detox 2,000 inmates — 43 percent of new jail commitments.

“It is a common problem for those of us in the construction industry,” Erlich added. “People get hurt, people get injured, and doctors routinely prescribe painkillers, unfortunately, some of them like candy.”