Something Old, Something New On Election Day
Voters across the Greater Boston area trickled to the polls to make their voices heard in municipal elections. Here’s a quick recap of what happened last night while you were probably doing other things.
The Boston City Council lost its two longest serving members, Charles Yancey in District 4 and at-large councilor Steve Murphy, to political outsiders Andrea Joy Campbell and Annissa Essaibi-George. Campbell won in a blowout while Essaibi-George won the final spot on the council with a comfortable lead. Yancey is the only person to hold the District 4 seat since its creation in 1983. Murphy was elected in 1997. All the incumbents won easily, but in District 2, Bill Linehan faced tough opposition from…blanks. Linehan even lost one precinct in Ward 5 to blanks.
The third bout in Quincy between rivals Mayor Tom Koch and Bill Phelan ended with Koch cruising to victory with 56 percent of the vote. Koch will now serve his first four year term as Quincy mayor, as the city recently increased the term length from two years to four.
At-large councilor Brian Arrigo defeated Mayor Dan Rizzo by 117 votes in an upset that caught some political observers by surprise. The vote is likely headed to a recount though, as there were problems with a voting machine in one precinct where Arrigo was leading by 70 votes, according to sources. Rizzo was in a tough spot, as he guided the city through disaster recovery after a freak tornado hit Revere, but failed to deliver a casino at Suffolk Downs that many were hoping would prop up the city’s finances.
State Sen Bob. Hedlund crushed Mayor Sue Kay in an election that will now trigger another special election, as he will give up his seat on Beacon Hill. The libertarianish Hedlund was first elected in 1995.
Voters picked Stephanie Burke over veteran city councilor Robert Penta in an election that gives Medford its first ever female mayor. Burke defeated Pentay by 555 votes.
Cambridge returned all of its incumbents to the city council except for vice-mayor Dennis Benzan, who was replaced by Jan Devereux, a member of a growing contingent of progressive NIMBYs opposed to development. Former Occupy Boston leader Nadeem Mazzen was reelected to his seat on the council when he topped Cambridge’s quirky single transferable vote system.
Low turnout and few opponents in Somerville ended with all incumbents in the city being reelected to the board of aldermen and school committee. Mayor Joe Curtatone ran unopposed for reelection.
Mayor Bill Carpenter coasted to reelection over C.J. MacMillan 55-44 percent on Tuesday, earning himself another two year term as the CEO of the City of Champions.