What has been rumored about, blogged about and whispered over morning coffees is about to hit the main streets as one of the more interesting political campaigns in recent memories gets set to officially kick off.
With the deadline for the return of nomination papers to local town clerks passing on Tuesday, the slate of candidates in the special election for state representative of the 6th Worcester District appears set – and it’s a lot different than what voters had to choose from in the general election last Nov. 2.
Incumbent state Rep. Geraldo Alicea, D-Charlton, and Spencer Republican Peter Durant, who after a recent Worcester Superior Court decision ended up tied at 6,587 votes in last year’s election, will likely have company on the way to a May 10 special election to, hopefully, once and for all determine who will represent the district towns of Charlton, Southbridge and East Brookfield, as well as two precincts in Spencer and one in Oxford, on Beacon Hill – until next year.
Charlton Selectman Peter Boria, Spencer blogger and Spencer-East Brookfield School Committee member Robert Cirba and former state rep. primary candidate and former Dudley-Charlton School Committee member Joanne Powell, along with Durant and Alicea, all had returned papers that were either certified or in the process of being so on Tuesday, according to clerks in each town.
Both Boria and Cirba are running as independents, meaning they do not have to run in a primary and will appear on the May 10 ballot. Powell, the last to pull out papers, is a potential huge wrinkle in Alicea’s plans to reclaim his seat, running as a Democrat and setting up an April 12 primary. No Republican challengers emerged for Durant, who shocked many in an apparent Election Day, four-vote win that was whittled to one during recounts and ultimately nullified in court. He recently earned an endorsement from upstart Bay State Republican Scott Brown, who last year scored a stunning U.S. Senate win to replace the deceased Ted Kennedy.
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