Independent Elected to Mass. House

Independent candidate Paul McMurtry was elected to the Massachusettes State House last week in a special election. He defeated a Republican and a Democrat, winning 38% of the vote.

From the Westwood Press...

Paul McMurtry, who pitched himself as the local candidate while campaigning for the 11th Norfolk District, needed the support of his hometown to win Wednesday’s special election.

The independent candidate from Dedham, who plans to enroll today as a Democrat, took 38 percent of the 7,838 district voters to fend off Westwood Republican Doug Obey, who won Westwood and Precinct 8 in Walpole, and Dedham Democrat Steve Bilafer.

“I’m feeling good. It’s an overwhelming feeling. It’s still sinking in,” McMurtry, owner of the Dedham Community Theatre, said last night on his way to celebrate at the Dedham American Legion.

The candidate was home when he learned that he had won. Both Obey and Bilafer came in with 31 percent of the vote, with the Republican sneaking past the Democrat by 42 votes.

The 11th Norfolk seat opened in January when former Rep. Bob Coughlin resigned to take an economic development seat in Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration.

McMurtry lost badly in Westwood and Walpole, taking just 12 percent and 13 percent of the vote, respectively. But in Dedham, McMurtry took 54 percent of the ballots, securing the overall victory by 482 votes.

Across the district, 30 percent of registered voters took to the polls.

Of his Dedham support, McMurtry said, “It’s a privilege and I’m honored. I said that the community has been good to me. Now I have the opportunity to be good to the community through public service.”

McMurtry promised to represent the other two towns as well.
“The entire district is going to be well-served. The bonds and alliances and friendships I made in Westwood and Walpole Precinct 8, I can only hope they will continue to grow (by) working with the supporters of the two other gentlemen in the race.”

Both Bilafer and Obey credited McMurtry for the win and his campaign.

“If I had to lose, I couldn’t have lost to a nicer guy,” Obey said. “This restores my faith that grass-roots campaigns do work. We were right on track. We had a grass-roots campaign, just not quite as big as Paul’s.”

Bilafer said he has offered to support McMurtry in his new position, and said, “I’m really proud of the races everybody ran. There was no negativity, it was never personal. A lot of credit goes to the other candidates.”

Both losing candidates said they would not have changed their strategy, praising their campaign teams for hard work.

Neither Bilafer nor Obey has immediate plans for a future run at elected office.

One Response to “Independent Elected to Mass. House”

  1. globalist_elitist Says:

    BORING! This story needs a dead hooker, some child porn, or an illegal-immigrant donkey show (ALLEGEDLY!) to spice it up. :)