Democrat Jay Gonzalez to Challenge GOP Gov. Charlie Baker

Republican Gov. Charlie Baker is facing his first official Democratic challenger in next year's governor's race.

Jay Gonzalez, the former budget chief for former Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick, announced Monday that he plans to challenge the popular incumbent.

Gonzalez says Massachusetts needs a governor who will stand up to Republican President Donald Trump and defend the state's values.

Gonzalez says Baker is too satisfied with the status quo and too often stands on the sidelines.

The names of other potential Democratic challengers have surfaced, including Newton Mayor Setti Warren, but Gonzalez is the first to formally declare his candidacy.

Baker is widely expected to seek re-election in 2018, though he has yet to make any formal announcement.

Baker opposed Trump during last year's election and refused to vote for him.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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