Deval Patrick

Former governor of Massachusetts
Jump to  stances on the issues
Deval Patrick dropped out of the presidential race on February 12, 2020. This page is no longer being updated.
Patrick made a late entrance into the race in November 2019 after initially passing on a presidential bid. The former two-term Massachusetts governor is pitching himself as a leader who can bring people together.
Harvard College, B.A., 1978; Harvard Law School, J.D., 1982
July 31, 1956
Diane Bemus
Sarah and Katherine
Managing director, Bain Capital, 2015-2019;
Governor of Massachusetts, 2007-2015;
Board of directors, ACC Capitol holdings, 2004-2006;
Executive vice president and general counsel, Coca Cola 2001-2004;
Vice president and general counsel, Texaco, 1999-2001;
Lawyer, law firm Day, Berry &
HowardAssistant US attorney general for civil rights, 1994-1997;
Lawyer and later partner, law firm Hill &
Barlow, 1986-1994;
Lawyer at NAACP Legal Defense Fund, 1983-1986


Joe Biden is endorsed by Deval Patrick, another former 2020 contender
Updated 4:48 PM ET, Fri Mar 6, 2020
Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick on Friday joined several other former 2020 presidential candidates in endorsing Joe Biden for president. "At a time when our democracy is at risk, our economy is not working for many Americans, and our role in the world is unsteady, America needs a unifying and experienced leader, who can and wants to make life better for everyone everywhere. Joe Biden is that leader," Patrick said in a statement provided by the Biden campaign. Visit CNN's Election Center for full coverage of the 2020 race "I am today proud to endorse him for the Democratic nomination for President," Patrick continued. He joins former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, former Rep. Beto O'Rourke of Texas, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Maryland Rep. John Delaney in endorsing Biden this week. Buttigieg, Klobuchar and O'Rourke endorsed Biden on Monday, right before the Super Tuesday contests. Biden surged after his blowout win in South Carolina, and the Democratic centrist establishment has consolidated around the former vice president. CNN projected Biden would win 10 out of 14 states on Super Tuesday, including a dramatic upset victory in Texas and surprise wins in Minnesota and Massachusetts. Patrick said that when he was governor of Massachusetts he worked closely with Biden, who was vice president at the time. "I saw firsthand Joe's essential role in passing historic health care reform, saving the American auto industry and our country from another depression, leading our troops home from war, and championing historic civil rights and LGBTQ equality," Patrick said. He praised Biden's work on a number of other issues, and called the candidate a "genuinely caring and compassionate person." Patrick ended his own late-entry presidential bid in February after a disappointing performance in the New Hampshire primary. He had campaigned as a moderate, calling for a public option to be added to Obamacare rather than supporting "Medicare for All," a proposed government-run single-payer health care program.


climate crisis
Close Accordion Pane
After announcing his campaign in November 2019, Patrick named climate change as a priority.“We’re already late to climate change. The question is whether we are too late and if we continue to delay we will be too late,” he said in Iowa, The Gazette reported. In 2014, Patrick unveiled a $50 million plan while governor to assess and address vulnerabilities in Massachusetts surrounding climate preparedness. In 2014, Patrick called for Massachusetts to end all reliance on conventional coal generation by 2018 and move to natural gas. He said the state should migrate away from fossil fuels and double down on solar, wind and hydropower.
Open Accordion Pane
Patrick told CBS News in November 2019 he believes taxes should go up on the most wealthy. He said he envisions a “much, much simpler tax system for everyone where we eliminate all or most of the deductions and we smooth out and simplify the system we have.” He said he thinks greed is the problem, not wealth.
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Patrick told CBS News in November 2019 that he would support eliminating or vastly reducing student debt. In 2007, Patrick unveiled a plan to make community college free in Massachusetts within 10 years. The plan also called for universal prekindergarten, full-day kindergarten and extending the school day and school year. In 2010, Patrick signed a bill to increase the number of charter schools in the state, give administrators the power to overhaul failing districts and make Massachusetts eligible for up to $250 million in federal dollars.
gun violence
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Patrick in 2014 signed into law an overhaul of Massachusetts’ gun laws. The legislation added the state to a national database for background checks, and allowed police chiefs to go to court to block individuals they deemed dangerous from acquiring shotguns and rifles.
Open Accordion Pane
Patrick told CBS News in November 2019 he did not support “Medicare for All” “in the terms we’ve been talking about,” and that he backs a public option. “If Medicare is that public option, I think it’s a great idea,” he said. Patrick last year called Medicare for All a “terrific idea” but said he would support keeping private options under the Affordable Care Act.
Open Accordion Pane
In 2018, Patrick called for overhauling immigration and was critical of the Trump administration’s immigration policy, including the actions from US Immigration and Customs Enforcement. “The sadistic policies and practices of ICE today have got to go, separating families, the walking away from DACA, the deportation of spouses of immigrants who serve in the military today. Really?” Patrick told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “We are better than that. And the opportunity to have comprehensive immigration reform has been on the table before. There is bipartisan support for it. It needs to come back. We need to be serious about it.”


A huge moment for US democracy
Updated 9:36 PM ET, Tue Jul 27, 2021
Does truth even matter anymore?  That question lies at the core of the House Select Committee investigation on the January 6 insurrection that just opened on Capitol Hill with searing testimony from police officers beaten by the mob Donald Trump incited. It took six months for the House to probe the sacking of the citadel of US democracy because Trump's tame Republicans and fellow election fraud liars made extraordinary efforts to stifle an accounting for history.  House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made repeated concessions in getting a deal for a nonpartisan, independent commission composed of nonpoliticians to investigate one of the darkest chapters in US history. But after Trump publicly criticized it, House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy helped scupper the deal agreed to by his own side. When Pelosi blocked two of McCarthy's picks for the select committee she set up instead -- both of them promote Trump's false claims of vote fraud -- he boycotted the panel entirely.  There are two Republicans on the committee -- Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming (yes, that Cheney family) and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois -- who are likely sacrificing their promising careers to stand up to Trump's demagoguery. Cheney is one of the most conservative Republicans in the House, but she argued that the principles at stake justified her joining Democrats on the committee. "If those responsible are not held accountable and if Congress does not act responsibly, this will remain a cancer on our constitutional republic, undermining the peaceful transfer of power at the heart of our democratic system," she said on Tuesday. "We will face the threat of more violence in the months to come and another January 6 every four years."  But there is no hope that the committee will change America's political dynamic. McCarthy and his fellow Trump cult members are actually blaming Pelosi for the invasion of the Capitol -- saying she failed to provide sufficient security -- even though such responsibilities are beyond her purview. Let's remember the truth: A sitting President lied about his fair election defeat, called a crowd to Washington, told it to "fight like hell" and watched as it smashed its way into Congress to disrupt its certification of Joe Biden's presidency.  The opening of the select committee's probe underscored that the most important division in US politics these days is not between conservatives and liberals. It's between those who guard democracy and those who would destroy it for power.  Is it, finally, mission accomplished? Three days after the September 11 attacks 20 years ago, President George W. Bush declared a war on terror from a pulpit in Washington's National Cathedral. "This nation is peaceful, but fierce when stirred to anger. This conflict was begun on the timing and terms of others; it will end in a way and at an hour of our choosing," Bush said.  That hour is now.  President Joe Biden announced he will end the US combat mission in Iraq before the end of the year after also halting America's involvement in its longest war, in Afghanistan. Both wars, the one in Iraq most controversially, spun out of 9/11 and Bush's launching of a global war on terrorism and those who harbor terrorists, and to prevent radical Islamic groups getting weapons of mass destruction. The fact that WMDs were never found in Saddam Hussein's Iraq helped make the war one of the worst US foreign policy failures.  Biden's Iraq move is largely semantic. Much of the US mission there is already confined to an advisory, intelligence and training role -- designed to stem any large-scale return of ISIS. But the announcement, twinned with the Afghan decision, is important nonetheless because it represents the shifting of an era in foreign policy.  Bush and his fellow hawks defined the fight against radical Islamic terrorism as the dominant battle of the epoch. Yet 20 years later, the picture has shifted. America now sees its biggest threat coming from China.Washington hopes to keep the lid on global terrorism with arms-length operations and air and drone strikes in any number of countries without getting bogged down in wars that last several decades. Sending hundreds of thousands of troops to the Middle East, many to die or be maimed, now seems, from the perspective of time, to have been an approach always destined to fail.  But the other lesson from the first 20 years of the 21st century is that decisions made by foreign policy sages in Washington can no longer impose America's will on the world. Just like Biden, US enemies set their own hours of choosing too.