In 2010, I regularly expressed surprise that the race for governor’s councilor of the first district got so much attention.
A total of seven people — five Democrats and two Republicans — ran for the seat two years ago, and one of those Democrats is back for another shot: Walter Moniz of New Bedford, who was in Yarmouth last week to kick off his campaign.
According to a press release, Mr. Moniz has remained active since 2010 election building a support base in the first district, so he sounds very serious about winning this year.
The seat is currently occupied by Republican Charles O. Cipollini of Fall River, who won a rather odd race. His brother, Oliver P. Cipollini Jr. of Marstons Mills, was the Democratic nominee, and Charles openly declared that he wasn’t really interested in winning and voters should back Oliver. They didn’t.
(My theory? No one knows jack about the governor’s council, so they just voted for the guy whose name was listed first on the ballot.)
State Representative David T. Vieira (R – Falmouth) confirmed this week he plans to run for re-election, and he has a fundraiser coming up later this month.
The Lincoln Day Dinner is on Friday, February 12 at The Nimrod in Falmouth, with cocktails at 6 PM and dinner at 6:30 PM. The evening will include dancing and a roast of the host, so if you’ve ever wanted to insult the rep in a public setting (good-naturedly, of course), now’s your chance!
Tickets are $50 apiece, and you can grab those by contacting Addie Drolette at 508-540-6727 or email@example.com.
Since it’s a light week, let me take a moment to enlighten readers about some terminology they’ll see in this column from time to time.
Candidates who do not belong to what Massachusetts recognizes as a political party — Democrat (D), Republican (R), and Green-Rainbow (which, counter-intuitively, is noted as (J) on official documents) — and who do not claim affiliation with any of the 22 “political designations” recognized by the state, will be referred to in this paper as a “non-party” candidate.
In the past such candidates have been referred to as “unenrolled,” the preferred term of the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Office, but in the 2010 election cycle the office began to shift toward the term “non-party” due to complaints that “unenrolled” made people sound like they’re not registered as voters.
The office does not use the term “independent” when describing non-party candidates, in order to avoid confusion with the Massachusetts Independent Party or the American Independent Party — which, despite having “party” in their names, are only political designations as far as this state is concerned.
Addendum one: in Massachusetts, a political entity must receive three percent of the total vote in a state election in order to be recognized as an official party in the next state election, otherwise they are classified as a political designation. The main difference: parties have primaries, designations do not.
Addendum two: non-party candidates may choose the label “independent” to place next to their name on ballots instead of the tags “unenrolled,” “non-party,” or “minor party.” There is a bill in the Legislature that could change that and make “independent” the default label for non-party candidates, while another bill – filed by our own State Representative Demetrius J. Atsalis (D – Barnstable) would make “no party affiliation” the default ballot label.
Addendum three: among the more amusing recognized political designations in Massachusetts: the Pirate Party and the Pizza Party…and no, I did not make up either of those names.
Political news and announcements may be e-mailed to Michael Bailey, senior political reporter, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The views and opinions in the Enterprise blogs are those of the author and are not neccessarily shared by Falmouth Publishing.