For those who love good old-fashioned political races, incumbent Council President Jeffrey Turco and challenger Peter Gill are providing Winthrop residents with spirited and highly visible campaigns for the position of Council President. It’s hard not to notice the many lawn signs and the presence of the two candidates and their supporters holding signs each day.
The two candidates also are present at high-visibility events such as Tuesday night’s Women’s Health Forum sponsored by Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo. Both candidates were courteous and respectful of the event and were there to show their support for women’s health issues. There’s no doubt the election has been picking up in intensity since the recent candidates’ debate on WCAT. We’re sure that both candidates have been stopped on the street by residents who watched the debate either live or on one of the rebroadcasts to comment on their debate performance. And we can predict that there will be a larger audience than usual watching Tuesday night’s Council meeting, which is the last Council meeting before the November 8 election.
People have asked us why there seems to be so much interest in this election in particular. For one, townspeople understand that there are very important issues to be decided in the next year, such as whether Winthrop should build a middle school/high school complex. The election also matches two knowledgeable candidates who bring different perspectives about how the affairs of town government should be conducted. President Turco is citing his many accomplishments over the past two years in his campaign materials, while candidate Gill is pointing to his lengthy record of service to the town and his Winthrop roots. Gill also has inferred that he would change the “style” of leadership if he were elected Council President.
Another reason for the heightened interest in this campaign is that the election has the entire political stage to itself on the local level. There are no contests for state or national offices on the ballot. To borrow some phraseology from nearby Suffolk Downs, the election is in the homestretch and heading to the finish line.