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About GovernorBill Weld

Bill Weld was elected Governor of Massachusetts in 1990 and reelected in 1994 with 71% of the vote, when only 14% of the electorate shared his party registration.

In 2016, Bill received four and a half million votes as the Vice-Presidential nominee of the Libertarian Party, on a fiscally responsible and socially tolerant platform. This was more than triple the party’s best previous showing, and gained the Libertarian Party major party status or other ballot access standing in a record number of states. 

As Governor, Bill cut taxes 21 times and never raised any taxes.  He was rated the nation’s most fiscally conservative governor by both the Wall Street Journal and the CATO Institute. Before the end of his first term, Massachusetts’ unemployment rate went from highest to lowest among the nation’s 11 industrialized states.

During his tenure as Governor, Bill led 16 official trade missions to countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. He also served as national co-chair of the Privatization Council, which pioneered public-private partnerships, particularly in the area of infrastructure, and as national co-chair of U.S. Term Limits.

As Governor, Bill restructured the electric industry, setting a model for other states to introduce competition and market mechanisms.  He substantially reformed environmental clean-ups and pollution prevention by privatizing those functions better performed by the private sector. 

Bill was an early proponent of gay and lesbian civil rights; he appointed the judge whose opinion recognized marriage equality as a constitutional right for the first time in the United States.  He has always been an outspoken defender of a woman’s right to choose, and he was an early proponent of medical marijuana. 

Before becoming Governor, Bill served in Washington as Assistant Attorney General overseeing the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division.  This followed his five-year tenure as U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts, during which he successfully prosecuted 109 of 111 public corruption cases.

 At the beginning of his career, Bill served as a staff member in both the U.S. Senate and House, including participating in the Watergate impeachment inquiry. Bill graduated summa cum laude in classics from Harvard, received a degree in international economics from Oxford University in England, and graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School.

Bill is an active member of the Council on Foreign Relations and of the InterAction Council, an organization of former heads of state who meet around the world and issue annual reports on international issues of transcendent importance such as nuclear proliferation, religious sectarianism, and food and water. Bill served by Presidential appointment on the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council.  A partner in a Boston law firm, he currently serves on a number of public and private company boards. 

Bill and his wife Leslie Marshall live in Canton, Massachusetts. Bill has three step-children, and five children by his previous marriage to Susan Roosevelt, the great-granddaughter of President Theodore Roosevelt.

 

One of the functions of government is to act as a safeguard not just of property but of our liberties.
-Bill Weld

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