Looks Like ‘Unopposed’ Is the New Majority Party

This year, most state senators and reps are running without major-party opposition.

More than half of Massachusetts State Senators are running for re-election without major-party opposition this year, along with more than 60 percent of State Representatives.

Voter choices are especially slim in Boston, where five of the six Senate incumbents are unopposed. Sonia Chang-Diaz is being challenged in the Democratic primary by perennial candidate Roy Owens, and in the general election by last year’s mayoral race footnote, Republican David James Wyatt.

The Secretary of State’s office provided a list of candidates who have qualified for the ballot, following Tuesday’s deadline for submitting qualified signatures. (Statewide candidates have until next week.) The list does not include non-party candidates (independents), and there could be changes from challenges or withdrawals. Write-in campaigns are also possible.

But, as things stand, competition is slim as usual in the Commonwealth.

In the Senate, 19 Democrats and 2 Republicans are unopposed. Another, Jen Flanagan, failed to make the ballot due to disqualified signature—but no other candidate is running in the district, so she will be unopposed if her primary write-in campaign is successful.

A dozen Democrats have Republican challengers, and three of those also have Democratic primary opponents. Two Republican incumbents have Democratic challengers.

There will, at least, be candidates from both parties for all four of the open Senate seats where the incumbent is retiring.

On the House side, 70 of 118 Democratic incumbents running for re-election have no opposition; 11 face other Democrats but no Republican, and Republicans are fielding candidates against 37.

Democrats are challenging only 9 of the 26 House Republicans running for re-election, with one Republican facing just a primary challenge, and 16 completely unopposed.

There are 16 open House seats; there is at least one Democrat running in each of those districts; Republicans have candidates in nine.

Some of the most interesting competition, especially in the Boston area, could come from primary challenges to Democrats who recently won their seats in the city’s numerous special elections. Dan Ryan, Evandro Carvalho, and Dan Cullinane all face rematches or fresh challenges according to the Secretary of State’s list.