Neal Sharing Campaign Offices With Warren, Downing
While both offices belong to Neal, Elizabeth Warren's campaign for U.S. Senate, the Massachusetts Democratic Party and Benjamin B. Downing's campaign for state Senate will operate out of Neal's headquarters.
"As we have seen in the past, Democrats are successful when we work together to achieve common goals," said Neal, currently the representative for the 2nd Mass District. "Once I established the locations for my regional campaign headquarters I knew offering Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts Democratic Party, and Senator Downing the opportunity to join my Springfield and Pittsfield offices would be beneficial to Democrats of the First Congressional District. I look forward to working closely with Elizabeth and continuing the close relationship I have shared with Ben and the Massachusetts Democratic Party."
Neal is running for the Democratic nomination for representative. Part of his current district will be merged with the 1st Mass Distrit beginning in January 2013. Warren is challenging the sitting Republican incumbent for the Senate seat. Downing is running for his fourth term in the state Senate representing communities in Western Massachusetts.
"I'm excited to be opening offices in Springfield and Pittsfield and to continue meeting people throughout Western Massachusetts," said Warren. "I look forward to working with Congressman Neal to address the unique challenges facing the region and to level the playing field for middle class families across the commonwealth."
"It's great to see the grassroots excitement and organizing that Democrats are committed to across Massachusetts," said Downing, who previously served as an intern in Neal's Washington congressional office. "I'm looking forward to working with the Mass Democratic Party, Congressman Neal, and Elizabeth Warren to make sure the Berkshires help elect leaders committed to fighting for the middle class."
Neal's regional campaign headquarters are both situated in residential areas with high traffic. While the Pittsfield office is a short distance from the downtown business district, the Springfield office is located in the heart of the East Forest Park neighborhood that was decimated during last year's June 1st tornado.
"Winning campaigns are fueled by volunteers with the buzz and excitement created through an active headquarters," Neal said. "We are fortunate to have campaign offices in prime locations that will enable our volunteers to mobilize and organize effectively."
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U.S. Rep. Hopeful Nuciforo Submits Nomination Papers
Andrea Nuciforo became the first canidate to officially enter the race on Thursday.
The Middle Berkshire Registar of Deeds and former state Senator submitted more than the required 2,000 signatures to become the first candidate on the ballot. Nuciforo will be running against U.S. Rep. Richard Neal, D-Springfield, and writer Bill Shein.
Nuciforo hand-delivered the nomination papers to the Secretary of the Commonwealth's Springfield office.
"Being the first candidate to complete this monumental task is a clear sign of the strength of our organization and message. Voters across central and western Massachusetts have told me time, and time again that after 24 years, they're ready to send a strong Democrat to Washington that will stand up for woman's right to choose, and stand up against the Wall Street deregulation ushered on by Rep. Neal," Nuciforo said.
"This is the first time Rep. Neal has had a meaningful primary challenge, so thanks to the dozens of volunteers, interns, family and friends that were out pounding the pavement and knocking on doors to secure my name on the Sept. 6 primary ballot, we're one step closer toward being represented by a real progressive."
The newly drawn district covers parts of Hampden, Hampshire, Franklin and Worcester counties and all of the Berkshires. The Berkshire's current Rep. John Olver, D-Amherst, is retiring and redrawn districts pits Nuciforo and Shein against Springfield-based Neal.
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Cariddi Campaign Plans State House Jaunt
Gailanne Cariddi, the new 1st Berkshire's newly elected representative, will be sworn in on Jan. 5 with other state officers.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The Committee to Elect Gailanne Cariddi has plans for supporters of the 1st Berkshire District's first woman representative to see her sworn in.
Cariddi, elected in November to replace outgoing Rep. Daniel E. Bosley, will be sworn in at the State House on Wednesday, July 5, at 11 a.m. with other incoming legislators.
The committee has engaged King Ward Coach transportation to accommodate the many requests of people in the 1st District to attend the ceremony. The cost for the round trip to Boston is $30 per person. There will be ample time to visit the State House, surrounding historical areas of Boston and enjoy lunch.
The bus will leave North Adams at 7 a.m. from TD Bank on Main Street. There will also be one stop in Pittsfield at the Crowne Plaza, departing at approximately 7:45 a.m.
The State House ceremony includes the oath of office for the governor, lieutenant governor, senators, representatives and members of the Governor's Council.
Anyone interested in attending the celebration should contact Antoinette Cariddi at 413-652-2023 or Marie Harpin at 413-664-4362 by noon, Thursday, Dec. 9. Participants may make their check payable to the Committee to Elect Gailanne Cariddi and send them to 100 Galvin Road, North Adams, MA 01247.
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Cariddi Clear Winner in 1st District
Gailanne Cariddi is hugged by supporters at Petrino's Cafe after winning the 1st Berkshire District.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Gailanne Cariddi emerged as the winner in the 1st District, the first new state representative in 24 years and the first woman to occupy the seat. Although a primary election, there's no Republican running so the Democratic winner will coast to victory in November.
The longtime North Adams city councilor was surrounded by well-wishers at Petrino's Cafe on Main Street in North Adams as numbers continued to flow in from the district's hilltowns.
"I'm sure that it really hasn't hit me yet because it's so wonderful for so many voters to come out and support me," said Cariddi. "I really want to thank all the voters because without all of them, and the team we put together to run this election, we wouldn't be this happy right now."
The city native felt she was the leading candidate and her father was sure. He wasn't excited Tuesday, she said, "he said he knew I was going to win."
"Right along I felt I was the leading candidate but I told everyone I had two opponents from Adams nipping at my heels so I had to keep going," said Cariddi, referring to House hopefuls David Bisssaillon and Edward MacDonald.
Cariddi easily took North Adams, pulling 1,710 votes to Bissaillon's 575 and MacDonald's 379. She came in second in Adams, no surprise, with Bissaillon sweeping the town with 1,328 votes; Cariddi took 356 and MacDonald 261. It was in Williamstown, however, that Cariddi pulled far enough ahead that it would have been tough to catch her. She pulverized both men with 70 percent of the vote. Some 1,028 ballots were cast for Cariddi in the Purple Valley compared to 293 for Bissaillon and 164 for MacDonald.
She continued to roll up the smaller towns, gaining 221 votes in Clarksburg (Bissaillon, 120; MacDonald, 48) out of the 425 votes cast, and took Charlemont with 84 votes.
Cariddi believed her stances on the economy, jobs, community development, green initiatives, agriculture, small business, tourism and arts and culture put her over the top.
"They want somebody with a positive attitude who's going to keep moving our district forward," she said. "I think all of those things resonated with the voters. I talked about them time and time again. People wanted issues; I gave them issues."
The party was winding down at the Bounti-Fare in Adams for David Bissaillon. The former Berkshire Chamber president said he didn't want his supporters to leave sad.
"The people who worked for me, who supported me, they were my heroes. I'm grateful for what they've done," he said.
David Bissaillon talks with a supporter at the Bounti-Fare after losing his first run for office.
He wasn't ready to speculate on if he'd make another try at elected office — "not tonight" — and planned to take a breather and get back to work at Coakley, Pierpan, Dolan & Collins Insurance Agency.
"Unfortunately, my message didn't resonate with the voters," Bissaillon said. "We ran a clean campaign and I learned a lot. .... I wish Gail all the best. It's a great victory for her."
Edward MacDonald, who had been confident of a surge on Sunday, had already closed up his gathering at the American Legion in North Adams before we got there. The Chester town administrator had worked hard but couldn't catch Cariddi nor capture his hometown of Adams.
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Primary Election Day: Voting
Update 11:00 p.m.
Well, the votes are in and Tom Bowler and Gailanne Cariddi are the big winners so far tonight. In the 2nd Berkshire District, Michael Case beat out Rosanne Frieri for the Republican nomination but we here it's still neck and neck in the Democratic primary between Tom Szczepaniak and Paul Mark. The Berkshire Eagle called the race for Szczepaniak at 10 p.m. but an hour later PCTV said Mark was in the lead by 6 percent.
Update: 7:38 p.m.
The North County towns are reporting at least 30 percent turnout. In Adams, some 1,874 had voted by 6 p.m. with 33 percent turnout at the town's DPW garage. The town has 5,634 registered voters.
This was the first election for new Town Clerk Haley Meczywor, who described the experience as "interesting." "You really don't know what's going on [in an election] until you've been here all day," she said. "It's been really interesting."
Clarksburg had a 37 percent turnout at 7:20, with 409 voting out of about 1,119 registered voters. Cheshire had a 32.5 percent turnout shortly before 7, with 1,874 ballots cast out of 5,634 voters. Cheshire, in the 2nd District, had primaries for both Democrats and Republicans. We're told few Republican ballots were selected.
Samantha LaValley-Leary submits her vote into the Ward 5 ballot box at St. Elizabeth's Parish Center in North Adams.
Update 4:59 p.m.
We're getting a late start with election news today but we can tell you that voting is steady in the three biggest North County towns. In North Adams, nearly 2,000 had already cast votes with three hours left. Poll workers at St. Elizabeth's Parish Center, site of voting for Wards 1, 2 and 5, said the turnout has been steady since early this morning.
Last year's hotly contested mayoral election in the city saw more than 5,200 votes cast; that compares to just under 4,000 for the special Senate election that featured native daughter Martha Coakley.
"We vote whenever there's an election," said Donna LaValley-Leary of Ward 5.
We ran into David Bissaillon outside the North Adams polling station. The Adams resident is running for 1st Berkshire District and said he had a good feeling about the voting so far.
Dave Bissaillon rallies the troups in North Adams.
The former chamber president said he'd spent four or five hours in the hilltowns and in Franklin and Hampshire counties this morning. "I wanted to get to them and spend some time there," he said, adding that it was quiet at the polling stations but he expected things to pick up later in the day.
He was more pleased with a heavy turnout in Adams and Williamstown.
"I think it will be a strong turnout ... whatever happens, we'll all be smiling at the Bounti-Fare later."
Dan Bosley, the man whose shoes Bissiallon is trying to fill, was headed back to his office. He too was pleased with the turnout in his stamping grounds. Turnout will be critical factor in the race for sheriff, with Pittsfield native Tom Bowler expected to do well in his hometown. However, the county's biggest city has no other races on the ballot to draw voters out.
The mayoral election last year drew 13,215 votes, or around 46 percent; a similar number voted in the special Senate election. Pittsfield's primary last September drew fewer voters, but still nearly 8,000 for a 28 percent turnout.
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