Boston isn’t the only city with a hot mayoral election
Seven other municipalities feature races without incumbents
EIGHT MASSACHUSETTS cities are holding preliminary elections for mayor this month without an incumbent standing for reelection.
The exodus of the eight incumbents, who occupy roughly a quarter of the mayoral offices up for grabs this year, is an unusually high number and undoubtedly reflects the grind of COVID. Five of the incumbents decided to step down and three took jobs elsewhere.
Of the eight, Boston has grabbed most of the attention, with five candidates, four of them women, vying to become the first mayor of color in the city’s history.
But there are seven other similarly wide open races in Holyoke, Lawrence, Lynn, Newburyport, North Adams, Northampton, and Somerville. Many of them feature crowded fields that will be narrowed in this month’s preliminary election to two candidates who will compete in the final on November 2.
GBH’s Adam Reilly profiled the race early last month, prompting Curtatone to take a whack at him and Tauro afterward on Twitter. “How do you write a profile of Somerville mayoral candidates and not include that Billy Tauro is a convicted felon who spent time in jail for fraud? How is that not in the first sentence of his bio?” Curtatone asked.
In Lawrence, five candidates are seeking to replace Dan Rivera, who left before his term expired when he was appointed to the top job at MassDevelopment by Gov. Charlie Baker. City Council President Kendrys Vasquez took over as acting mayor when Rivera stepped down and now wants the job permanently. He is running against popular former city councilor Brian DePena, Doris Rodriguez, former Rivera aide Vilma Martinez-Dominguez, and former mayor William Lantigua.
Four women are running for mayor of North Adams, which guarantees the city will have its first woman mayor. Six candidates are running for mayor in Holyoke, five are campaigning in Northampton, and three in Newburyport.
In Lynn, City Council president Darren Cyr and School Committee members Jared Nicholson and Michael Satterwhite are running for mayor, seeking to replace Thomas McGee, who is stepping down.Left-leaning Boston Globe columnist Yvonne Abraham took a look at McGee’s tenure in late June and raised concerns about the candidacy of Cyr, who she described as “hotheaded” and a “throwback.” Abraham raised concerns about who will turn out to vote.
“This is a crucial moment for Lynn. But this massively important election, like those for mayor in Boston and other cities, comes at a time when folks are exhausted by the pandemic, and less engaged with politics after the Trump years. Which means the September 14 primary might be decided by the small minority of voters — disproportionately white, and older —who cast ballots in every election,” she wrote.