Democrat captures seat in special state Senate election
By Jill Terreri Ramos, Boston Globe Correspondent
In a hard-fought special election for state Senate in Southeastern Massachusetts, Democrat Michael D. Brady, a state representative from Brockton, defeated Republican Geoffrey G. Diehl, with 58 percent of the vote, according to unofficial results.
Brady attributed his success to his longtime presence in the district, where he has held elected office for years, and a dedicated group of volunteers.
He was supported by teachers, nurses, public safety and fire unions, and, according to unofficial results, won Brockton and Easton.
“I think it was a great team effort,” he said.
In addition to interest from other high-ranking Massachusetts elected officials, the race also attracted money from outside groups, including teachers’ unions and antiabortion activists. The outcome won’t change the balance of power in the Senate; only six seats out of 40 are held by Republicans.
Diehl, of Whitman, is known for winning support from the conservative wing of his party, and for championing a ballot initiative last year that blocked automatic increases in the gas tax. He won the support of Governor Charlie Baker, who campaigned on his behalf, and has also attended a fund-raiser for GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump.
Brady, meanwhile, had the support of Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg.
“Senator-elect Brady will be a welcome addition to the Senate,” Rosenberg said. “Mike ran a great campaign against a tough opponent and I look forward to working with him in the years to come.”
Brady, who ran on his ability to get government funds for his district, is a well-known figure from his political career in Brockton, as a state legislator, city councilor, and School Committee member.
The Second Plymouth and Bristol Senate District includes all or parts of Easton, Brockton, East Bridgewater, Halifax, Hanover, Hanson, Plympton, and Whitman. A special election was called following the death of Democratic Senator Thomas P. Kennedy in June.