"Extortion," "corruption" and "strong-arming" are not words any mayor wants to be associated with their administration. But that's what Boston Mayor Marty Walsh is facing following the conviction of two top City Hall aides.
"Everyone was really stunned by this, including the mayor," said Republican analyst Gene Hartigan.
Hartigan says Walsh said the right things in a statement — that "there is only one way to do things ... and that is the right way." But now, Hartigan says, people will be watching his actions.
"And that's made more difficult because he was a leader of the unions and he has a long history with the unions," Hartigan siad.
"There's always going to be speed bumps along the road if you're in elective office," said Democratic consultant Scott Ferson.
Ferson says with Boston being such a strong union city, Walsh will likely escape political backlash. He credits Walsh with standing by the two employees.
"He didn't throw them under the bus immediately," Ferson said. "He talked about the culture of the office and how he tries to instill it."
In-depth news coverage of the Greater Boston Area.
"He's still going to suffer a few blows because now, those who were thinking about running against him, whether it be Michelle Wu or Congresswoman [Ayanna] Pressley, this is an opening now that they'll play upon," Hartigan said.
And while a reelection bid may be fairly safe for Walsh, the verdict could come back to haunt him in a run for a higher office, like governor.
"I always think that when something like this happens, if you're looking for higher office, it's the way that you explain it," Ferson said.
Walsh will have the opportunity to explain himself and set a fresh tone, as inevitable negotiations with labor unions will be watched very closely in the future.