Unions May Be Key to U.S. Senate Race

Congressmen Ed Markey (left) and Stephen Lynch (right).

It was another busy week in the race for U.S. Senate last week as we start counting down the weeks to the April 30 primary.

As of Wednesday, two Democrats and three Republicans filed the required number of signatures to run in the special election for U.S. Senate. On the Democrat side we have U.S. Reps. Edward Markey and Stephen Lynch. So far for Republicans, it’s former U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan, former Navy SEAL Gabriel Gomez of Cohasset and State Rep. Dan Winslow (R-Norfolk). All five submitted more than the required number of signatures to the Secretary of State’s office to appear on the April 30 Primary ballot. City and town clerks have until Monday to deliver all signatures.

The five are all vying for the seat left vacant by John Kerry’s appointment to Secretary of State back in December 2012.

Democrats Agree on Debate Schedule

Markey (D-Malden) and Lynch (D-South Boston) agreed to participate in six debates between now and the April 30 primary. Three will be general format and three will focus on jobs, domestic issues and foreign policy. The debates will be spread out and are scheduled to be held in Lowell, New Bedford, Worcester and Springfield. The location of the sixth debate is yet to be determined.

Endorsements Pouring in, Unions Could be Key to Democratic Race

Both democratic candidates picked up some key endorsements last week. With two candidates who are both pro-labor, Lynch and Markey are expected to split the labor vote in the democratic primary, and true to that both picked up key labor endorsements, as well.

Mass.live reported this week that although the unions don’t make up a large percentage of the voting population, they can be major contributors when it comes down to fundraising and manpower.

Earlier in the week Lynch was endorsed by the The Massachusetts Nurses Association /National Nurses United (MNA/NNU), the largest union of registered nurses and health professionals in the Commonwealth.

Lynch also received the endorsement of the Professional Fire Fighters of Massachusetts, Markey picked up the endorsement of the AFSCME Council 93. The organization represents more than 35,000 Massachusetts state, county and municipal workers.

He was also endorsed this week by NARAL Pro-Choice America’s political action committee.  

On the Republican side, Gomez gained support from Central Massachusetts’ Republican State Committee members Brent Andersen and Mindy McKenzie-Hebert when he kicked off his campaign last week. According to mass.live, the two issued a joint statement in support of Gomez.

On the Road Again 

Candidates continued to crisscross the state last week as their campaigns went into full swing.

Markey made stops last week in Belmont, Newton, Brighton, Taunton and Hyannis.

Lynch made the rounds on the North Shore that included stops in Lynn,Peabody and Salem.

The last day for residents to register to vote in the April 30 primary is April 10.

South End Patch