Massachusetts Auditor Candidate Amore: ‘I’ve Done the Work, My Opponents Haven’t’
In a highly competitive race for Massachusetts State Auditor, Anthony Amore looks to distinguish himself from the other candidates in the field with his more than three decades of experience doing the work of conducting audits and investigations.
Since 2005, Amore has been the Director of Security and Chief Investigator at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, a crown jewel of Boston's art and cultural profile that displays a multi-billion dollar art collection. Amore also conducted an investigation into the 1990 heist at the museum, which remains the largest theft in the history of the world.
For 15 years prior, Amore worked as a federal agent for both FAA Security and the Department of Homeland Security. After 9/11, Amore was tapped for the position of Assistant Federal Security Director and tasked with leading the effort to rebuild the security infrastructure at Logan Airport, which became the model nationwide. Amore is also a licensed private investigator and does freelance investigative work and security audits as well.
"Throughout my career I've been doing audits, and inspections, and investigations. That's my profession," Amore said in a recent appearance on SouthCoast Tonight.
Amore said that his opponents on the Democratic side have "interesting experience" but they don't have experience in audits and investigations needed to run the office effectively.
"You can't learn this on the job," Amore said. "There's too much work to be done. You have to audit 209 agencies in three years."
The office of Auditor has made headlines recently in part because of the election, and also because of the recently-rediscovered 1986 law that could see $3 billion in tax revenue returned to the people of the Commonwealth. The law states that if tax revenue exceeds the rate in which people's income grows, then the difference is rebated to the taxpayers of the Commonwealth. By September 20, the State Auditor must sign off on an amount to be refunded to the taxpayers.
If current Auditor Suzanne Bump fails to make the September 20 deadline, Amore said he is ready with 24 taxpayers to petition the Supreme Judicial Court to have the money returned to the people of the Commonwealth, as per state law.
Though Amore is on the ballot as Republican, he has broken from the majority of his electoral counterparts in the GOP by adopting more pragmatic and less ideologically-driven policy positions.
For example, when asked about the recently-passed law that allows undocumented immigrants to apply for drivers licenses, Amore, unlike most state GOP candidates and voters, said he supports the effort to allow those without a legal immigration status to be trained and licensed to operate a motor vehicle.
He said he would prefer the issuance of a "driver privilege card" rather than a regularly-issued Massachusetts drivers license due to the difficulty the RMV will have in authenticating foreign documents.
"Listen, they're human beings and let's be pragmatic," Amore said. "They're driving, and it actually helps law enforcement too to say 'okay, we have a reasonable idea of who this person is' for insurance purpose and if there's an accident. A driver's privilege card is a great thing."
It is policy prescriptions like that which demonstrate a pragmatic experience-driven approach and the willingness to make compromises that has been the hallmark of Governor Charlie Baker's tenure as governor, and likely the reason why Amore is the only statewide candidate endorsed by Baker this year.
"Our motto is 'professional, not political,'" Amore said. "That's how I see the office. That's how the governor sees it and that's why he's endorsed me and only me – because he trusts me to run the Auditor's office the way he's run the governor's office."
Listen to Chris and Marcus' Full Interview with Anthony Amore on SouthCoast Tonight.