Congressman Edward Markey is moving up to the Senate after defeating Republican challenger Gabriel Gomez in yesterday’s special election. However, the votes coming in from North Shore cities and towns were split.
Markey, D-Malden, got the nod from Beverly, Ipswich, Marblehead, Salem and Swampscott, while Gomez won in Danvers, Hamilton, Peabody and Wenham.
With 99 percent of the precincts reporting last night, Markey had 638,811 votes to Gomez’s 520,307.
A third candidate, Richard Heos of the Twelve Visions Party, failed to receive even 1 percent of the vote from any of the communities.
Markey, 66, has served in the U.S. House of Representatives for 37 years, while Gomez, 47, a businessman and former Navy SEAL from Cohasset ran as a political newcomer. Markey will fill the remaining term of John Kerry, who was appointed secretary of state earlier this year.
“Massachusetts is not a Gomez-type state. It is not a Republican state,” said Charles Berfield of Danvers, who voted for Markey at the Holton Richmond Middle School. “We tried that with Scott Brown, and that didn’t work out so well.”
Calling the election “sort of lackluster,” Arthur Thompson of Beverly said he voted for Markey at Centerville Elementary School.
“I want someone there who is going to support the president,” Thompson said. “Markey is a Washington insider, but he will help the president get things done in Washington.”
Donald Ganim, who voted at Winthrop Elementary School in Hamilton, said he voted for Gomez.
“I like his integrity and commitment,” he said. “He is a fresh face, with fresh ideas. He is not a political insider.”
Danvers resident Jeannie Monahan agreed.
“I am looking for fresh blood,” Monahan said. “Markey has been in for 37 years and has not made any big changes.”
While low turnouts were expected across the state, many North Shore towns and cities reported higher vote counts than expected.