Bulger Regains Senate Seat
Challenger Holt Wins Precincts With Low Turnouts
Attorney Stephen Holt lost his bid for the State Senate to incumbent Senate President William M. Bulger last night in the Democratic primary.
Holt carried 32 out of 60 precincts--mostly in the more liberal Back Bay and South End--but garnered only 35 percent of the votes, because turnouts were far heavier in South Boston.
"We won all the places we thought we would win, but we did not win by as much as we thought we would," said Larry Ginsburg, Holt's campaign manager.
On one hand, Holt beat Bulger by a count of better than three to one in the South End and Back Bay, but an average turnout that may have been as low as 10 percent cost Holt the necessary lead, according to AI Glass, Holt's volunteer coordinator.
On the other hand, Bulger defeated Holt handily in South Boston. There, Holt got 2000 votes, just what he had expected he would need in order to win. Bulger's energetic campaign, however, collected 6000 votes for the incumbent president of the Senate and brought him a decisive victory.
Speaking to about 50 supporters and campaign workers, Holt pointed to the 2000 votes that he had gotten from South Boston, Bulger's traditional stronghold, and to the attention he had brought to the problem of rising automobile insurance costs as evidence of his campaign's hard work and success.
Holt vowed to fight again in 1990. "This will not be a senate district where the incumbent will run unopposed," he said.
Because of Bulger's conservative record in the Senate and his power to impede legislation he opposes, a host of liberal interest groups and labor unions worked for Holt's campaign and publicized their support for him.