Gov. Patrick makes historic pick for interim Senator

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January 30, 2013, 10:46 pm
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(NECN: Deanna Morgan, Boston) - William "Mo" Cowan is now the second of two African Americans to serve in the Senate from Massachusetts - the second in decades.

"Mo is a highly respected public citizen," says Governor Patrick.

Although highly respected, the question came up during Wednesday's news conference whether Governor Deval Patrick chose to appoint a person of color to take over John Kerry's position in the Senate. And, the question got an answer.

"The breadth of diversity of background and ethnicity and race us deeper and broader than ever," says Patrick.

We asked the people of the Commonwealth if Governor Patrick appointing an African American to serve as an interim Senator is significant.

"It's very important to have people of color, people who are gay and lesbian... Hispanic... women in government," says Russ Morgridge.

"I hope someday it'll no longer become significant," says Jessamyan Hodge while passing by Copley Square.

NECN's Deanna Morgan sat down with Mel King, a former Massachusetts lawmaker and former MIT Professor.

"Why are we still in a place where this [race] is significant?" asked King.

King feels people are hung up on race, but says he isn't. Cowan isn't.

"The reason I'm standing here is not because I'm a person of color," says Cowan. "I believe he [Governor Patrick] has confidence that I will do the job he's sending me to do."

"So, if this opens people's eyes and ears or more importantly, their hearts, then it is an important thing," says King.

Tags: Boston, massachusetts, US Senate, John Kerry, Deval Patrick, Deanna Morgan, interim senator, William Mo Cowan, Mo Cowan, Mel King
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