Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Michael Lake for the Democrats

A generation has come of age knowing one man as state auditor, a post that in many states would be appointed, not elected.

But that’s unlikely to change and so the next best thing would be to put someone in that office who isn’t a creature of Beacon Hill, someone who sees the office as one that can be used to simply make government more cost effective.

Among the three Democratic contenders that has to be Michael Lake, a smart up-and-comer who would arrive owing nothing to anyone. Yes, an auditor without political baggage would be a beautiful thing.

But Lake also has a background that makes him uniquely qualified in this field for the Democratic nomination.

Lake served during the Clinton administration as special assistant for White House operations, where his streamlining efforts saved taxpayers money. He’s currently executive director of Northeastern University’s World Class Cities Partnership, which brings together community leaders to discuss best practices in city management.

And that’s what Lake intends to do as auditor - to be pro-active, doing performance audits, rather than simply delivering the bad news about how much money has been wasted.

In addition to rescinding the 5 percent raises recently awarded to his employees by Auditor Joe DeNucci, Lake proposes to restructure the office. He actually finds it odd that there are currently 42 “audit supervisors” riding herd over 45 “field auditors,” and frankly so do we.

Lake would be the kind of “new broom” the office needs and the Boston Herald is pleased to endorse his candidacy in the Democratic primary.