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Perhaps the biggest story about the 2018 midterm election was not who won, but how many voted.
In Westford more than 69 percent of the 17,000 registered voters turned out to cast ballots, either by voting early or by standing on line on election day, Nov. 6.
“In my 20-plus years of working in the Town Clerk’s office and helping with elections, I cannot recall a midterm election with this many voters,” said Town Clerk Patty Dubey.
In contrast, 8.1 percent of 16,904 registered voters turned out for the town-wide election in May.
The numbers seemed to dovetail with the voter turnout across the country, with a record 34 million casting early votes, according to published reports.
The Gazette of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, published this headline on the morning of Nov. 6: “Tuesday morning voter turnout surpasses 2014 numbers by 9 a.m.”
For the key seats, Westford voters brought no surprises. Incumbent James Arciero, a Westford Democrat won handily over Republican Kathy Lynch of Westford for the 2nd Middlesex District state Representative seat, 7,596 to 3,842. The position represents Westford, Littleton and Precincts 5, 7 and 8 in Chelmsford. Arciero beat Lynch by 1,000 votes in Chelmsford, 3271 to 2,213. Results from Littleton were not available on the night of Nov. 6.
Democrat Edward J. Kennedy beat Republican John MacDonald for the First Middlesex District state Senate seat, 6,930 to 4,319 in Westford. In addition to both candidates’ hometown of Lowell, the district covers Groton, Westford, Pepperell, Dunstable and Tyngsborough.
Democrat Lori Trahan won the Third District Congressional seat over Republican Rick Green and Independent Mike Mullen. In Westford, Trahan got 7,620 votes, to Green’s 3,684 votes and Mullen’s 263 votes. Throughout Middlesex and Worcester Counties, Trahan got 59.6 percent of the total votes as compared to Green’s 35.3 percent and Mullen’s 5 percent.
In other elections, incumbent Democrat Elizabeth Warren outpaced Republican Geoff Diehl and Independent Shiva Ayyadurai for the United States Senatorial seat.
The Baker-Polito Republican ticket overwhelmed the Gonzalez-Palfrey Democratic ticket for governor.
Incumbent William Francis Galvin, a Democrat, prevailed as Secretaover Republican Anthony M. Amore and Green-Rainbow Party candidate Juan G. Sanchez, Jr.
Democrat Maura Healy won for attorney general over Republican James R. McMahon, III.
Democrat Deborah B. Goldberg won for treasurer over Republican Keiko M. Orrall andGreen-Rainbow Party candidate Jamie M. Guerin.
Incumbent Suzanne Bump, a Democrat, won as state auditor in Westford over Republican Helen Brady, Libertarian Daniel Fishman, and Edward J. Stamas of the Green Rainbow Party.
Democrat Eileen R. Duff beat Republican Richard A. Baker and Libertarian Mark C. Mercier for Councillor.
Democrat Richard P. Howe, Jr. won over Unenrolled candidate Karen M. Cassella for Register of Deeds.
Democrat Michael A. Sullivan was unopposed for Clerk of the Courts.
Democrat District Attorney incumbent Marian Ryan was also unopposed for another term.
Ballot Question #1 – Westford voters denied an effort by registered nurses to create a law that would limit patient to nurse ratios. The yes votes totaled 2,362 as compared to 9,049 no votes.
Ballot Question #2 – Voters in Westford approved the creation of a citizens commission, 8,096 to 3,346, that would advance an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to limit the influence of money in elections. It would also establish that corporations do not have the same rights as human beings.
Ballot Question #3 – Westford voters chose to keep a law which prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity in public places, 7,793 to 3,749.
Find all Westford election results here.
UPDATE – A quote from the town clerk was added.