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slides: Markey Vs Lynch: By the Numbers

Thursday, March 14, 2013

 

As the Democratic primary heats up for the Commonwealth's open U.S. Senate seat, GoLocal takes a look at the numbers to see how U.S. Reps. Ed Markey and Stephen Lynch compare.

We pick apart the rankings on taxpayer friendliness, gun control, protecting the middle class and more to show how these Congressmen have performed in recent years before one takes on a Republican challenger in the June 25 special election.

Strengths and Weaknesses

Both candidates have key groups that have shown their support, and now the question is which one has more swinging power.

“Markey comes from the progressive wing of the Massachusetts Democratic Party, and I would expect groups on the left will strongly support him,” said Clark University professor of political science, Mark Miller. “Lynch comes from the more conservative wing of the Democratic Party, and I would think center-right groups will support him. “

Miller added that Markey has been a “darling” of environmental groups, and can count on them for support. Robert Boatright, another Clark political professor, agreed.

Markey, he said, will likely have a better chance gaining support from left-leaning advocacy groups, but will split union support with Lynch.

“I think Markey has a substantial edge in support, but Lynch may well be a better campaigner and more capable of making personal appeals, particularly to working class Democrats,” Boatright said. “That might help overcome Markey’s edge, but given the dynamics of turnout in a special election, I doubt it.”

Local Support

Both candidates for Kerry’s empty seat have local supporters, with councilors and state-level politicians throwing their support behind Markey and Lynch for various reasons.

More than forty labor organizations, including the Massachusetts Nurses Association, and a number of other elected officials across the Commonwealth have endorsed Lynch in his Senate run, and more announced their support this week.

State Reps. John Fresolo (D-Worcester) and John Binienda (D-Worcester), At-Large City Councilors Kathleen Toomey and Michael Germain and former state Rep. Jennifer Callahan (D-Sutton) officially announced their endorsement of Lynch in the special election.

“I want a Senator who remembers where they come from, and that’s Steve Lynch,” said Toomey. “He's an independent, self-made man who strapped on a pair of work boots for 18 years.” She added, “Steve Lynch doesn’t need a GPS to get to Worcester, he knows where Worcester is and knows how important our future success as a city is to the people of Massachusetts.”

Rep. Fresolo said that Lynch isn’t a “carbon copy of the progressive Democrats who have been successful recently,” but said he fits best with the people he represents.

“My constituents are the working class and the working poor. In my opinion, there is no better advocate for the people I represent and the people of Worcester than Stephen Lynch in the U.S. Senate,” he said.

Given their track records and momentum thus far, political experts say it’s just a matter of keeping that support going and translating that into votes.

The Grades Come In

Before the April 30th primary, see how Lynch and Markey have stacked up so far during their years in Congress by reading how national groups ranked these candidates for taxpayer friendliness, gun control, protecting the middle class and more.

 

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