Candidate John Chapman Visits
By David A. Mittell, Jr.
On July 1 The Duxbury Clipper welcomed John Chapman of Chatham, a Republican candidate for Congress for the seat now held by Democrat William Keating. Mr. Chapman grew up in Milton and graduated from Kenyon College and Suffolk Law School. In 1984, in his first job after college, he went to work as an intern in the Reagan White House. When introduced to the president he recalls Mr. Reagan saying, "So you're the other
Republican in Massachusetts!"
Mr. Chapman has had an extensive career in the public and private sectors. From 1992 to 1999 he worked in the Enforcement Division of the Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington. He later served in the Romney administration, first in the Department of Industrial Accidents, where he helped eliminate a back-load of 5,000 cases, and later as under-secretary in the Office of Economic Development. In the private sector he has been general counsel for the Joslin Diabetes Center and for the financial services firm of Tucker Anthony.
Mr. Chapman holds Republican views on issues such as "Obamacare," which he favors turning over to the states, and repealing its tax on medical devices – which, he says, particularly injures Massachusetts. He is passionate about delimiting government spending and favors a federal balanced-budget amendment. But he favors Governor Patrick's planned South Coast commuter rail and supports delaying new federal flood insurance rates for properties reclassified into potential flood zones. He characterizes himself as a big supporter of the state's community colleges.
Mr. Chapman asserts that in two terms the incumbent congressman has sponsored very little legislation. He also notes that the National Federation of Independent Business gives Mr. Keating's voting record a 15-percent-favorable rating. He would do a lot better than that, he says.
In recent years the Tenth (now Ninth) Congressional District has strongly supported Republican candidates such as former Senator Scott Brown, while voting Democratic when its candidate was fully trusted and the Republican was not. That is much of the story of Mr. Keating's first election to Congress in 2010. John Chapman's record looks to be unblemished, but the incumbent is a veteran of many competitive elections. The challenger, who lives in Chatham with his wife Diane and son Alec, knows his task won't be easy. First is a competitive Republican primary on Sept. 9. The nominee will face Mr. Keating on Nov. 4.