By Brendan Clogston
In a night of historic political upsets across the Commonwealth, Everett largely backed its incumbents, though by margins modest enough to suggest that a still ripening appetite for change does exist in the city.
Two-term State Rep. Joseph McGonagle overcame a challenge by local activist Gerly Adrien for the 28th Middlesex State Representative seat by a 168-vote margin, netting 1,968 votes, or 42.17 percent, to her 1,800 votes, or 38.57 percent (a third candidate, former State Rep. Stat Smith, came in a distant third, winning only 893 votes or 19.13 percent). Local interest in the race was high, with only 108 blanks and six write-in votes cast. (For comparison, 470 blanks were cast in the Democratic primary for U.S. Congress between Ayanna Pressley and Michael Capuano, and 1,461 blanks and 79 write-ins were cast in the Democratic primary for Governor.)
McGonagle called the race a “tough campaign” which has made him “a better State Representative” – “My opponents ran a great race and I applaud their efforts. I’m looking forward to continuing to deliver for the people of Everett.”
With such a showing, Adrien’s political future in the city looks bright; however, for the moment, Adrien stated, she has no immediate plans for another run, instead taking the time to focus on completing her master’s degree.
She also expressed her gratitude to her voters and supporters. “Thank everyone for coming out and supporting me,” she said.
Smith’s political life, on the other hand, appears to have had an end Tuesday night. In his first election since being forced to resign as State Rep. in 2013 after pleading guilty to a voter fraud scheme in which he cast absentee ballots for voters who were either ineligible or unaware that ballots were being cast in their name, Smith’s dismal showing this week dashed any hopes of an easy political comeback.
Because no Republican candidate has been nominated for the seat, McGonagle is all but assured to be reelected in November.
In other races, Everett largely followed the rest of the state, though with a few notable exceptions. Boston City Councillor Ayanna Pressley earned a stunning and unexpected victory in the 7th Congressional District against longtime incumbent Michael Capuano by a massive 17-point margin, 58.6 percent (59,815 votes) to 41.4 percent (42,252 votes). Everett backed the incumbent by an even larger 30-point margin, with 2,798 votes (64.98 percent) for Capuano and 1,497 votes (34.77 percent) for Pressley.
In the Democratic primary, in the only other race where Everett diverged from the state, Everett narrowly backed local comedian and climate activist Jimmy Tingle over former Assistant Attorney General Quentin Palfrey by 39 votes, awarding Tingle 1,581 votes (49.95 percent) to Palfrey’s 1,542 (48.72 percent). Local interest in the race seems to have been limited: 1,611 ballots left the Lt. Governor’s race blank, about a third of all ballots cast and more than any individual candidate received. Statewide, Palfrey defeated Tingle by a comfortable margin, winning 58.9 percent of the vote to Tingle’s 41.1 percent.
Otherwise, Everett voters were in-line with the rest of the state, voting to nominate Democratic candidate for Governor Jay Gonzalez, Secretary of State William Galvin, Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan, Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Geoff Diehl, Governor Charlie Baker and Republican candidate for Attorney General James McMahon.
A number of races were uncontested. Among Democrats, Governor’s Councillor Terrence Kennedy, State Senator Sal DiDomenico, Treasurer Deborah Goldberg, Auditor Suzanne Bump, Attorney General Maura Healey, Clerk of Courts Michael Sullivan and Register of Deeds Maria Curtatone were nominated after running unopposed, as were Republicans Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, Secretary of State candidate Anthony Amore, Treasurer candidate Keiko Orral and Auditor candidate Helen Brady.
The results from Tuesday’s election in Everett are listed below.
Joseph McGonagle – 1,968 votes (42.17 percent)
Gerly Adrien – 1,800 votes (38.57 percent)
Stat Smith – 893 votes (19.13 percent)
108 blanks, six write-ins
Michael Capuano – 2,798 votes (64.98 percent)
Ayanna Pressley – 1,497 votes (34.77 percent)
470 blanks, 11 write-ins
Jay Gonzalez – 1,847 votes (55.73 percent)
Bob Massie – 1,388 votes (41.88 percent)
1,461 blanks, 79 write-ins
Quentin Palfrey – 1,542 votes (48.72 percent)
Jimmy Tingle – 1,581 votes (49.95 percent)
1,611 blanks, 42 write-ins
Secretary of State
William Galvin – 2,943 votes (73.81 percent)
Josh Zakim – 1,029 votes (25.81 percent)
789 blanks, 15 write-ins
Marian Ryan – 1,993 votes (55.42 percent)
Donna Patalano – 1,584 votes (44.05 percent)
1,180 blanks, 19 write-ins
Geoff Diehl – 321 votes (56.61 percent)
John Kingston – 170 votes (29.98 percent)
Beth Lindstrom – 72 votes (12.7 percent)
48 blanks, four write-ins
Charlie Baker – 332 votes (55.7 percent)
Scott Lively – 262 votes (43.96 percent)
19 blanks, two write-ins
James McMahon – 326 votes (66.53 percent)
Daniel Shores – 160 votes (32.65 percent)
125 blanks, four write-ins