Special Election to Fill Mass. Senate Seat

Special Election Eyed For Nov. 7 To Fill Senate Seat

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE – Senate President Karen Spilka plans during Thursday’s session to call a Nov. 7 special election to fill former Sen. Anne Gobi’s seat, her office told MASSterList, teeing up the contest for the same day that two cities in the district already have mayoral elections scheduled.

The moderate central Massachusetts district, which stretches across much of the state’s middle, includes Republican-leaning towns like North Brookfield and Spencer and the Democratic-leaning city of Gardner and a sliver of Worcester.

Gardner and Worcester both have municipal elections planned for Nov. 7.

Gardner is the home of Democrat Rep. Jonathan Zlotnik, who quickly jumped into the Senate race last month. Two Republicans have announced runs — Spencer Rep. Peter Durant and Rebekah Etique. State Secretary William Galvin’s office usually confirms primary election dates for four weeks ahead of general special elections, and Spilka’s office pegged the primary date at Oct. 10.

Gobi, a Spencer Democrat, won her first Senate race in 2014 against Republican Michael Valanzola by a margin of 398 votes. The district map was redrawn before last fall’s election, when Gobi secured reelection against another Republican candidate, James Amorello, with 54 percent of the vote.

Gobi’s plans to leave the Senate and work for the Healey administration were announced May 22, and Gobi resigned effective June 4. The delay in setting an election date — a duty that falls to the Senate president — led MassGOP Chair Amy Carnevale on Wednesday to accuse Spilka of “drag[ging] her feet” on the issue. – Sam Doran/SHNS |

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