Marblehead resident Amy Carnevale was elected chair of the state’s Republican party on Jan. 31 and is promising to make the Massachusetts GOP more inclusive.
“We need to get the party back on track,” Carnevale told the Marblehead Current on Feb. 1, the first day of her two-year term. She spoke about her goals for the Massachusetts GOP.
“We have some financial and legal challenges. We are in debt. We’re trying to determine how much the party owes to vendors.”
Carnevale said she will also need to deal with accusations that her predecessor, Jim Lyons, violated campaign finance rules by communicating directly with an outside political action committee to do opposition research on Gov. Maura Healey during the November election.
Carnevale ousted Lyons, a former state representative and conservative hard-liner, in a vote of 37-34. She hopes to reinvigorate the MassGOP, especially after big losses in November. Fewer than 30 of the 200 Massachusetts state legislators are Republicans. All nine members of the state’s congressional delegation are Democrats.
“We want to reach out to the unenrolled voters and be competitive in elections again,” she said.
Carnevale has been a Republican state committee member for more than a decade and was a delegate to the Republican National Convention in 2016 and 2020. She was a supporter of former president Donald Trump and campaigned for him in 2016. She condemned the violent Jan. 6, 2021 riots at the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters seeking to overturn President Joe Biden’s election, calling the intrusion “a serious crime” and arguing that Trump “should have made absolutely clear that he was committed to the orderly transfer of power.”
While in college, she worked at the White House and the Office of National Drug Control Policy. She then moved to Capitol Hill, where she served as chief of staff for a Republican congressman from Washington state.
Charlie Baker appointed Carnevale to the Governor’s Commisison on Intellectual Disability in 2017. She has worked as a lobbyist for K&L Gates in Boston and Washington, D.C. for nearly 20 years.
In Marblehead, Carnevale served on the town’s Special Education Parent Advisory Council from 2014 to 2018.
Material from the State House News Service was used in this report.