Category Archives: Elections

Phoenix on potential voter suppression in Worcester

From the Phlog:

Enter Bonnie Lund-Johnson – former leader of the Seven Hills Tea Party, GOP state committeewoman for the

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First Worcester District, and the Freddy Krueger in every voter advocate’s nightmares from Boston to Springfield. …

Johnson is gearing up for battle. She says that Activate Worcester will have between 60 and 80 men and women working polls, and another 10 to 30 volunteering as observers.


Election Commission exhaustive coverage

Yesterday’s Election Commission meeting was one of the more thoroughly covered events Worcester has seen recently. This morning’s Telegram and Gazette report from Nick Kotsopoulos is only the beginning.

T&G reporter Steve Foskett was also at the meeting and livetweeted it. Walter Bird adds a bit of Worcester Magazine coverage here, with an odd take this morning on some of the exchanges. GoLocalWorcester has their coverage here.

Nicole liveblogged most of it, with MainSouthMom picking up where Nicole’s power ran out.

The flowchart created by Assistant Clerk Joshua Meduna, referenced several times during the meeting is available online here. It spells out what happens with inactive or ID-needed voters.

Audio of the entire meeting is here.

In addition, the following requests were made by the Voter Protection Network:

  • Request that the Election Commission and the City of Worcester continue to prioritize the pressing need for greater training of poll workers as well as for police officers who work at polling locations.
  • Request that the Election Commission place 2 large signs in the same languages as the ballots at all polling locations stating; “ALL ELEGIBLE VOTERS HAVE A RIGHT TO VOTE TODAY” and a second of the City’s official list of acceptable proof of residency.
  • Request the names of anyone that was removed from polling locations by the Worcester Police Department, or asked to leave by the Worcester City Clerk, be submitted by the City of Worcester to the Attorney General’s Civil Rights Commission and the City Solicitors Office to be reviewed and recommended for potential sanctions.


For those interested, the next meeting of the Voter Protection Network is Wednesday, September 26 at 6:15 pm at the YWCA, 1 Salem Square.  For more information, see here.

Voter Protection Network – Monday at Election Commission

via Facebook:

During Thursday’s primary election, there were numerous incidents of voter intimidation, voter suppression, and other serious issues that took place at a number of polling locations.

Our Elections Commission is meeting on Monday evening, and they need to hear from the community that such issues

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cannot be allowed to happen again. They need to hear that our polling places should not be a hostile environment where voters are intimidated and where the rules are not uniformly applied, and they need to hear it from YOU.

Please join us at City Hall this Monday, September 10th at 5:30PM! Activate Worcester and the others who are actively attempting to intimidate and suppress voters will be there, so we need you there too.

Our vote is our voice, and we must

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protect that for everyone!

Worcester primary wrapup

Mary Keefe wins Democratic primary for state rep, will presumably win election. She has run for City Council in the past and not done that well; in this election she soundly defeated, among others, long-time and very popular City Councilor Kate Toomey.

I don’t live in that state rep district, but based on the election mailers Jeremy Shulkin has collected and shared online, the Keefe team used the most consistent capitalization and punctuation of the primary campaign.

T&G has a good column on Tea Partiers coming into Worcester as “agitators” allegedly “intent on intimidation and voter suppression.”

These folks are reportedly worried about liberal Worcester activists registering “disenfranchised people” to vote. Expect that word choice to be mocked in the coming weeks.

Nicole has a little commentary and followup.

Kate Toomey joins 15th Worcester District Race

Via FB:

On Tuesday, I will be taking out nomination papers for the 15th Worcester District State Representative position recently vacated by Representative Vincent Pedone.
I have given this a great deal of thought, and want you to know that I will continue to do my very best as a City Councilor At Large, as you expect, while the campaign moves forward. I love being

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a City Councilor, but this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to serve Worcester in a different capacity.

It is my understanding that there will not be a special election, so there will be a primary in September, and of course, the final in November.
I know that I am eminently qualified with 13 years of service as a School Committee Member and City Councilor. I spent six years on the School Committee lobbying at the State House on behalf of the Worcester Public Schools.

Vacant seats and black boxes

The State House News Service had a long article about the House seat left vacant by Vincent Pedone:

O’Day said that residents from the vacant Worcester district can turn to

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Sen. Harriette Chandler or to the other local lawmakers should they need assistance from Beacon Hill.

“The other four of us feel certainly a kinship to that district and we will do our level best, along with Senator Chandler as well who represents that district, to provide constituent services to make sure we don’t let anything fall short in the budgetary process as well,” he said. “[Pedone] still has an active phone number where constituents can reach. He’s made it pretty clear that Senator Chandler is available and we certainly can all, through her, assist with whatever work needs to be done in that district.”

And a CommonWealth poll about Tim Murray is also of interest:

A whopping 56 percent of those polled answered “don’t know” when asked whether they view him favorably or unfavorably, while 27 percent said they viewed him very or somewhat favorably and 17 percent viewed him very or somewhat unfavorably. (His anonymity, spoofed last fall in this video for a MassINC fundraising event, remains intact.)


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crash itself didn’t register with a lot of people. The poll indicates 52 percent of those surveyed knew nothing or not very much about the crash, while 47 percent knew a great deal or a fair amount.

Today in Worcester Political News

But wait!  There’s more!
The rumor mill is spinning with the names of at least three elected officials who might be interested in the seat.
There’s another who might be interested, but — alas — that person might have to admit to living in one residence while registering to vote at another in order to qualify for this race.  Tant pis!
And the REAL news is the best gif we wish were related to Worcester politics (but, sadly, is not):

Delle can’t sue the T&G

Robert Delle, one of the many contenders in last year’s Third Congressional race Republican primary, unsuccessfully sued the Telegram for a Clive McFarlane column describing him as a “birther” and a comment on that referred to him as a “dope.”

From the Lawyers’ Weekly Docket blog:

Judge C. Jeffrey Kinder threw out the lawsuit, finding that any accusation of racism “centered on McFarlane’s interpretation” and was therefore protected speech.

The claim about the comment was rejected because federal law mandates that the newspaper “cannot be held liable for comments posted to its website,” said Kinder. Dalle’s allegation that a Telegram employee had posted the anonymous comment was “entirely devoid of detail or elaboration,” added Kinder.

City Council and School Committee video

If you’re like most Worcester residents, you’ve missed at least one debate.  Here’s another roundup of the video from debates (and other candidate-related video)…

School Committee debate sponsored by the Worcester Chamber of Commerce:

At-large Council debate sponsored by the Worcester Chamber of Commerce:

District Council debate sponsored by the Worcester Chamber of Commerce:

(updated, 11/4 at 2:08pm) Mayoral debate sponsored by the Worcester Chamber of Commerce:

Tony Economou ad:

Devin Coleman on the Clark News:

Steve Buchalter in non-blue-screen mode: