SPECIAL ELECTIONS : WHERE THE MONEY IS … AND ISN’T

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^ big money winner in the 13th Suffolk : Dan Hunt campaigning on a wintry night

—- —- —-

If you want to know what’s likely to happen in the four (4) Special state legislature elections now reaching climax day in the Boston area, it’s well worth looking at the money.

Always when I talk money, I have to offer this disclaimer, so here it is : yes, money isn’t everything in politics; people do the voting. They count too.

Yet Massachusetts’ $ 500 limit on donations, and the almost complete absence of secret conspiracy money in special elections, allows the greenback trail to say a lot about how many people are walking that trail to the voting booth. Here’s the OCPF for all four races :

13th Suffolk district (much of Dorchester and one precinct of North Quincy)

Liam Curran —- raised 22,387.53
spent 13,197.92
balance 9,189.71
Gene Gorman — raised 9,795.00
spent 4,878.37
balance 4,916.63
Dan Hunt ——- started with about 45,000.00
raised 49,615.00
spent 61,297.06
balance 43,371.11
PJ McCann —- raised 15,070.00
spent 3,180.52
balance 11,809.42
John O’Toole — no report filed as of this morning

2nd Suffolk District (Charlestown and three-quarters of Chelsea)

Roy Avellaneda — raised 28,460.00
spent 5,884.49
balance 22,575.51
Chris Remmes —- started with 23,560.00
raised 26,460.00
spent 30,476.36
balance 19,420.85
Dan Ryan ———- started with 2,500.00
raised 4,039.18
spent 29,990.43
balance 17,370.11

16th Suffolk District (most of Revere; one-quarter of Chelsea; two precincts of Saugus)

Josh Monahan — raised 6,455.18
spent 2,772.17
balance 3,682.01
Linda S Rosa —– raised 5,100.00
spent 2,596.76
balance 2,503.24
Todd Taylor (R) — raised 7,115.00
spent 2,551.06
balance 4,563.94
Roselee Vincent – raised 42,598.92
spent 27,257.19
balance 15,344.73

5th Middlesex Senate (Malden, Melrose, Stoneham, Wakefield, Reading, most of Winchester)

Chris Fallon — started with 8,400.00
raised 52,947.00
spent 52,284.01
balance 9,566.59
Anthony Guardia — started with 2,550.00
raised 19,245.00
spent 11,284.42
balance 10,510.58
Jason Lewis — started with 109,723.25
raised 37,185.00
spent 89,242.69
balance 57,665.56
Monica Medeiros (R) — started with 2,443.60
raised 4,275.00
spent 2,101.78
balance 4,516.87

As you can read, in two of the three State Representative races there’s a clear donor winner. Dan Hunt, in the Dorchester-Quincy District, has raised more money than all his rivals combined (leaving out John O’Toole, who has yet to report.) Roselee Vincent, of the Revere-centered District, holds an even larger advantage over her combined opponents. Even before I researched the money, Hunt and Vincent looked like winners on March 4th Primary day. Their dollar results certainly don’t wrongfoot me.

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^ overall money leader in the 2nd Suffolk : Chris Remmes

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^ 2nd Suffolk money leader in this reporting period : Dan  Ryan

Things are less clear in the Charlestown and Chelsea District. All three men have raised credible money. Question is, will this race’;s dominant money raiser, Chris Remmes, dominate the vote ? On the ground, he looks like 3rd place, but the money says otherwise. The bulk of it comes from donors living outside the district, but that isn’t a disqualification. Perhaps the decider is how much money the three have raised in this reporting period. Dan Ryan is the clear leader — but not by a number overwhelming. My conclusion : these three men are very, very dissimilar, and in a district with many different voter strains, there’s money to support those dissimilarities. Primary day may tabulate a very, very close result.

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^ scant money raised, in a District arguably Republican : Monica Medeiros of Melrose

The State Senate special election taking place along Route 28 north of Everett, from Malden to Reading, offers surprises of its own. For 22 years this was Republican Ricard Tisei’s seat almost uncontestably; yet now, the lone Republican candidate, a Melrose City Alderman, has raised almost no money at all. There are three Democrats running; two have raised large money. The big name, Chris Fallon, has, however, been significantly beaten in the money game by Winchester state representative Jason Lewis. I haven’t covered this race at all and have no opinion on who will likely win the Democratic nomination — though the twitter-verse has recently talked up Lewis.

If he wins, he will face the Republican, who in a District quite competitively two-party ought to be a serious opponent and even, given the disconnect going on right now between suburbs and Beacon Hill, the favorite. But the money record tells a much different story. Why Monica Medeiros shows so weakly, I don’t know, but given the anti-voter turn being taken by right wing activists — who have all but sharked our State’s local-level GOP — I can think of a reason : there’s no constituency, outside of right-wing cocoons, for anti-voter politics, and hopefully there never will be. Whether Medeiros shares this anti-voter bent I will try to find out during the run-up to an april 1st Final.

—- Mike Freedberg / Here and Sphere

Author: hereandsphere

Here and Sphere is an online journal of news, opinion, reviews, advice, & bits n' pieces of everything else - from HERE to SPHERE...... Co-founded by Michael Freedberg, a long-time Boston Phoenix journalist, and Heather Cornell, a South Coast Massachusetts columnist and editor.

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