Early Voting ends today; town prepares for Tuesday’s state election; 50–60 percent turnout expected
By Mark E. Vogler
For the second time in three years, Massachusetts voters got a chance to cast their ballots at the polls early.
And from all indications from Town Clerk Ellen Schena’s office, hundreds of Saugus residents are still loving it – the same as back in 2016 when Massachusetts voters were able to cast their ballots before Election Day for the first time. “It’s a lot of work, but I would say a lot of the voters like it,” Schena said in an interview Wednesday.
By day’s end, 1,344 voters – close to 12 percent of the town’s total registered voters – took advantage of the Early Voting, which concludes today (Friday, Nov. 2). Town Hall will be open from 8:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Most of the town will go to the polls to vote next Tuesday (Nov. 6) from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
In 2016, when Massachusetts had Early Voting for the first time, 3,717 registered voters – or close to 20 percent of the town’s 18,967 registered voters – cast their ballots before the election. More than one million ballots were cast across the Commonwealth, as 22 percent of Massachusetts registered voters took advantage of Early Voting.
“Normally, we usually get a 50 to 60 percent turnout,” Schena said of next week’s state election, which features the following:
- Three candidates on the ballot in eight of the town’s 10 precincts (except Precincts 3 and 10). State Rep. Donald Wong, R-Saugus, seeks his fifth two-year term on Beacon Hill. He faces opposition from Matthew Crescenzo, a U.S. Army veteran and 2011 Saugus High School graduate who is running as a Democratic candidate in his first political race. Former Saugus Selectman candidate Michael A. Coller is on the ballot as the unenrolled candidate (see this week’s “The Advocate Asks”).
- The gubernatorial race, where Republican Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito seek a second four-term as they face Democratic challenger Jay Gonzalez, who is running on the ticket with Quentin Palfrey.
- A U.S. Senate race. Incumbent Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren faces two challengers: Republican Geoff Diehl and Independent candidate Shiva Ayyadurai.
- There’s also a three-way race for the 6th Congressional District seat, where the incumbent, U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, a Salem Democrat, faces Republican candidate Joseph Schneider and Mary Jean Charbonneau, who is running as an Independent.
- Long-time incumbent Secretary of State Bill Galvin, a Democrat, is being challenged by Republican candidate Anthony Amore and Green-Rainbow Party candidate Juan Sanchez Jr.
- Democrat Maura Healey faces a challenge from Republican James McMahon III in her reelection bid for state Attorney General.
- Incumbent state Treasurer Deborah Goldberg, a Democrat, faces two challengers: Republican Keiko Orrall and Green-Rainbow candidate Jamie Guerin.
- The state auditor’s race has four candidates: the incumbent, Democrat Suzanne Bump, Republican Helen Brady, Libertarian Daniel Fishman and Green-Rainbow Edward Stamas.
- In the race for the Sixth District Governor’s Councillor, Incumbent Democrat Terrence Kennedy faces Unenrolled candidate Vincent Dixon.
- The race for Essex Southern District Register of Deeds has Democratic incumbent John O’Brien Jr. facing opposition from Republican Jonathan Ring and Unenrolled candidate David Colpitts.
- Several candidates are running unopposed in next week’s elections; that includes State Rep. RoseLee Vincent, D-Revere, whose districts include Precinct 3 and 10 in Saugus. Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett, a Peabody Democrat, faces no challenge. Essex County Clerk of Courts Thomas Driscoll, Jr., is also running without opposition.
- Voters will consider three ballot questions. Question 1 would limit the number of patients that could be assigned to each registered nurse in a Massachusetts hospital and other health care facilities. Question 2 seeks to create a citizens commission to consider and recommend potential amendments to the U.S. Constitution to establish that corporations don’t have the same Constitutional rights as human beings and that campaign contributions may be regulated. Question 3: This law adds gender identification to the list of prohibited discrimination in places of public accommodation, resort or amusement.
Where You Can Vote
Precinct 1 – American Legion Post, 44 Taylor St.
Precinct 2 – Veterans Memorial Elementary School, 39 Hurd Ave.
Precinct 3 – Italian American Club, 1 Beachview Ave.
Precinct 4 – Belmonte Middle School, 25 Dow St.
Precinct 5 – Lynnhurst Elementary School, 120 Elm St.
Precinct 6 – Veterans Memorial Elementary School, 39 Hurd Ave.
Precinct 7 – Knight of Columbus, 59 Appleton St.
Precinct 8 – Belmonte Middle School, 25 Dow St.
Precinct 9 – Oaklandvale Elementary School, 266 Main St.
Precinct 10 – Italian American Club, 1 Beachview Ave.
The voter Makeup
The 19.051 registered voters in Saugus include:
- 11,461 Unenrolled.
- 5,363 Democrats
- 1,983 Republicans
- 61 Libertarians