White Withdraws From Williamstown Select Board Race
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Nicholls "Niko" White has removed himself as a candidate for the Select Board.
White had to run for the last year of the term being vacated by Jeffrey Thomas and had gained enough signatures to be placed on the ballot for the annual town election. White said he had announced to run for office when no other candidates had stepped forward and it appeared that the elected office would be uncontested or lack a strong progressive candidate.
But as of last week, it had turned into a four-way race.
"I decided to campaign to make sure my positions were represented in the field," White said in announcing his witgdrawal from the race last week. "And now we have an embarrassment of riches in that regard. If we had ranked choice voting or another alternative to first-past-the-post, I'd view my candidacy as an asset regardless. So many folks have told me they're glad I'm running, and were eager to turn out for me. Unfortunately, we do use first-past-the-post here, which means I have to worry that by staying in the race, I will instead split the progressive vote at a critical time. I'm not willing to risk that."
White is the owner of Spring Street's Purple Dragon Games and said that factored into his decision as his ability to open the store more fully is likely as more people are vaccinated.
"My store is an event space in addition to a retail space, and as my community becomes vaccinated, I'm eager to be able to hold events again for folks who have completed the course and waiting period. After being closed or mostly closed for over a year, there's a lot to be done to get ready for that," he said. In local elections, none of us are professional politicians, we all have lives we have to balance with campaigning."
White was able to meet the deadline for withdrawal and his name will not be on the ballot. He has not ruled out running for office in the future. He plans to endorse another candidate via his Facebook candidate page after the League of Women Voters forum, and urges his supporters to turn out for that candidate to advance progressive values in town.
Tags: election 2021, town elections,