Andover Townsman, Andover, MA


May 2, 2013

Many sit out special Senate primary

Timing of vote keeps turnout low


“I’ve been consumed with the story,” she said.

She said she’s been watching TV coverage of the bombing and reading stories about the two young men involved in an attempt to understand their motivations. As a result, she hasn’t had any time to catch up on reading about the election.

“I believe in voting,” she said. “It’s a privilege I love to exercise. But I like to be an edified, educated voter, and I didn’t read enough about the candidates to vote.”

Susan Woodman, 54, an employee of a tutoring service on Main Street, said she wasn’t voting in the election because she is “disillusioned with the state of politics.”

“I’ve kind of lost hope in the system,” she said. “I’m an Obama supporter, but they aren’t letting him get anything done.”

After years of stability among the state’s two U.S. senators, Massachusetts is now heading into its second special election for the office in three years, and Galvin said voters appear less enthusiastic than in 2009.

State Sen. Barry Finegold, D-Andover, was among the small numbers who turned out to cast his ballot at Andover High School.

“It’s been a difficult campaign,” he said. “We had a major snowstorm in February, and what happened in Boston, along with voter fatigue, it’s just not what people are talking about at the water cooler.”

Some voters were energized to get out and cast their ballots, hoping their candidates would prevail both in the primary and final elections.

“I’m a hard-core conservative,” said Dan Shine, 69, of Grenada Way. “I voted for Mike Sullivan. He was the most attractive of the candidates.”

He said he ultimately hoped that Markey loses in the final election.

“I couldn’t vote against Markey,” he said, because he voted in the Republican primary. “But,” he said, “Republicans have no chance” in the final election. “We’re in Massachusetts.”

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