Sen. Roger Katz’s colleagues in the Maine Senate found some surprising news in their email inboxes Monday morning: The assistant Senate Republican leader had just earned a great gig as the in-stadium announcer for the Red Sox at Fenway Park.
The problem? The senator from Augusta would have to miss every Senate session that fell on the same day as a weekday Red Sox game, and Senate President Justin Alfond, D-Portland, wasn’t having it.
Katz, a diehard Red Sox fan, pleaded with Senate Democrats in an email to lobby Alfond to excuse Katz’s Sox-related absences:
I have been given the opportunity of a lifetime that I just don’t think I can pass up. The public address announcer for the Red Sox at Fenway Park just quit on Friday and I got a call from Tom Werner, one of the owners. We went to college at Harvard together and have stayed in touch since. He asked me if I wanted to audition for the job so I went down there yesterday and it went well, so they offered me the job. For games during the week, I just won’t be able to make session, but that is only about half the time. President Alfond is not agreeing to excuse me from votes when I am away, which I think is unfair; one wonders if he would have the same position were I a Democrat. I am asking each of you to please drop him a note to see if he will change his mind.
To add to the twist, the message to Senate Democrats from Katz came in an email from Ericka Dodge, Alfond’s communications director, who said she was jockeying for the job as Katz’s 2014 campaign manager:
Please see below for a communique from Sen. Roger Katz. He has asked me to forward this along to all of you so that you can be made aware of an impending issue. Many of you may know that as a result of the work done on the Joint Select Committee on Maine’s Workforce and Economic Future, my confidence in Sen. Katz’s leadership has grown. To that end, as his prospective campaign manager for his 2014 race, I think it is important that the issue below find quick resolution.
As much as Katz would like this Red Sox dream to come true, the only announcing he’s likely to be doing in the near future is how he plans to vote on contentious legislation.
The Maine Senate wasn’t the only political body to engage in an April Fools’ Day prank. The White House on Monday morning posted a “Special Message from the President” that featured a video of Kid President at the White Housing briefing room podium.