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Historically Low Turnout Expected In Mass. Senate Special Election

By Bobby Sisk, WBZ-TV

BOSTON (CBS) – On a hot Monday evening, The Common Market in Quincy was packed. Gabriel Gomez supporters came to see their candidate, but to also see a man many of them helped elect three years ago. “Please join me in welcoming our next Senator from Massachusetts, Gabriel Gomez,” Scott Brown said as he introduced Gomez.

Read More: Voters To Finally Decide Between Ed Markey, Gabriel Gomez

Gomez’s faithful would like to see a repeat of Brown’s win in 2010, but this campaign has lacked enthusiasm, reflected in what’s expected to be record low voter turnout. “All of the indicators indicate to us that the interest is not there,” said Secretary of State Bill Galvin citing absentee balloting, voter registration and inquiries to his office’s website.

“It’s a different time and a different race, different candidates,” Brown said. “But the bottom line is the voters of Massachusetts have an opportunity to send a very powerful message to Washington.”

Related: Behind The Mic With Joe Mathieu: This Election Is Important

Monday’s gathering was the first public campaign event between the Brown and Gomez, although Gomez said Brown’s been working behind the scenes to help. “You know, helping to raise money and he and I have been talking and texting and you know he’s been a great advisor,” Gomez said. “I’ve been doing things that I’ve been asked to do and I’m happy to be here,” Brown added. (Continued…)

Meantime in Malden, hundreds braved the heat to support Ed Markey. He held a hometown election eve rally at the YMCA, where he first announced his run for Senate.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens reports

Low Election Turnout

His focus in the final full day of campaigning focused on the work still to be done in Washington. “It’s about jobs. It’s about a woman’s right to choose. It’s about banning assault weapons. It’s about making sure that the wealthy pay their fair share,” he said at an event in Worcester.

Markey enjoys a double-digit lead in the latest poll from Suffolk University, 52% to Gomez’s 42%. But the Congressman said he’s not taking anything for granted. “We’re trying to generate the highest possible turnout that is imaginable,” Markey said.

Related: Keller @ Large: Break A Sweat, Get Out And Vote

Secretary of State Bill Galvin hopes he’s wrong about how many people show up to vote. “I would love nothing more than to be wrong,” he said. “I believe that tomorrow’s turnout will be in the range of 1.6 million which will mark a record low turnout for an election for the United States Senate,” he stated. Distractions, Galvin speculated, include the Bruins run for the Stanley Cup, the Whitey Bulger trial, vacation season and finally, the unpredictable hot streak gripping the state this week. The race also lacks the national momentum of Brown’s contest in 2010 when, for example, healthcare reform was being debated in Washington.

The polls are open from 7am to 8pm tomorrow. Markey will vote in his hometown of Malden. Gomez will cast his ballot near his home in Cohasset.


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