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Adam Gomez Becomes First Puerto Rican Elected To Massachusetts Senate

State Senator-elect Adam Gomez of Springfield
Western Mass Politics & Insight

        Voters in Western Massachusetts are sending some new people to the Massachusetts legislature.  One closely watched race remains too close to call.

     Two Springfield City Councilors will be heading to Beacon Hill in January to become members of the next state legislature.  

     Adam Gomez, who defeated a five-term incumbent in the September 1st Democratic primary, had no opponent in the general election.   His victory is historic. He is the first Latino elected to the State Senate from Springfield and the first Puerto Rican to serve in the Senate.

   "We're feeling amazing,"  Gomez said Tuesday night as he spoke from his campaign headquarters to a virtual election watch party held by Hampden County Democrats.

   "We're looking forward to really hit the ground running to represent western Massachusetts at the State House," said Gomez.

      City Councilor Orlando Ramos, also a Democrat, crushed his opponent, Robert Underwood and will replace State Rep. Jose Tosado in the 9th Hampden District House seat.

     " It was a long hard-fought battle from when I announced my campaign," said Ramos, who was victorious in a three-way Democratic primary.  "I am grateful for the confidence of the voters, relieved that it is official now, and I am ready to get to work."

    In the 7th Hampden District, the race to succeed longtime State Rep. Thomas Petrolati is too close to call.   With more than 22,000 votes counted and all precincts reported, Democrat Jake Oliveira leads Republican Chip Harrington by 134 votes.  That district is made up of all of Ludlow and parts of Belchertown, Springfield, and Chicopee.

      Oliveira said Wednesday morning that he is confident the vote totals being reported are correct, but he is not claiming victory.

           Making his first bid for elected office since retiring from a 20 year military career, Republican Kelly Pease of Westfield defeated two other candidates for the open seat in the 4th Hampden House District.

  "I am truly humbled by the people of Westfield electing me to be their next Representative," said Pease.

   In Holyoke, Patricia Duffy won the election for the 5th Hampden District and will succeed State Rep. Aaron Vega. Duffy, who is a legislative aide for Vega, won a three-way Democratic primary in September and faced no Republican opponent.

    In one of the few contested State Senate races in Massachusetts, Democratic incumbent John Velis defeated Republican John Cain in the 2nd Hampden and Hampshire District.   Velis, of Westfield, defeated Cain to win the seat in a special election last May.


Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston. He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester. Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011. Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.
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