College Junior Vies for State GOP Seat

Portrait for Office
Francheska M. Loza

Cabot House classics concentrator Michael E. Cowett '13 is campaigning for the Republican State Committee. Cowett has spoken at two forums and plans to have a press release and make calls to voters this coming week.

He’s a junior. He’s a classics concentrator. Now he might be a political representative.

And his chance of winning his race looks good. Facing a currently uncontested election two weeks from now, Michael E. D. Cowett ’13 is still campaigning to serve as the Republican State Committee member for the Middlesex and Suffolk state senatorial district, which includes sections of Cambridge and Boston.

With current committee member Allan R. Zenowitz deciding not to seek reelection, Cowett said he was motivated to enter the March 6 race, citing the need for new energy and progress in the Cambridge area as driving inspirations.

“In my experience in the past two years, the only really effective member of the State Committee who represented Cambridge was not in the district I lived in,” Cowett said. “My current committee member made the decision not to run again, so it made my decision to run clear.”

The Massachusetts Republican State Committee organizes Republicans in the state by establishing strategies, assisting in local elections, recruiting candidates, raising money, and seeking new party members in the area.

Each district is represented by a male and female committee member.

“As a state committeeman, he will ensure that there will be city and ward committees throughout the district, and he will attend meetings with these committees to provide support and training to the members,” said Barbara T. Bush, who is campaigning to be the female State Committee member for the Middlesex and Suffolk district.

As Cowett’s potential counterpart on the committee, Bush praised his accomplishments as both a full-time student and candidate.

After collecting more than the 60 resident signatures necessary to be placed on the ballot, Cowett also participated in a recent forum for candidates running for other offices in the Cambridge area.

“One of my biggest tasks will be to expand and, in some cases, begin Republican efforts in my four areas,” Cowett said.

He said he plans to strengthen local Republican infrastructure and create effective city-wide political organizations. At a broader level, he said he hopes to shift focus from top-of-the-ticket governor races to State House and municipal offices.

“I have more of an interest in refining and recruiting...local offices that can be stepping stones to higher offices, making sure that the party will focus beyond the governor’s mansion in ways that are likely to broaden its base,” Cowett said.

Cowett has volunteered for Cambridge City Council campaigns, interned for State Representative Nicholas A. Boldyga, and served as an active member of the Cambridge Republican City Committee.

“Michael is a nuts-and-bolts kind of guy with a very good grasp on the details of the process—he seems to live and breathe politics,” Cambridge Republican City Committee Chairman Henry Irving said. “We’ve become much more productive since he’s joined us...and he’s got a lot of energy there, in a quiet way.”

—Staff writer David Song can be reached at davidsong@college.harvard.edu.

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:

CORRECTION: Feb. 28

An earlier version of this article stated that Michael E. D. Cowett ’13 and Barbara T. Bush are running for Republican State Committee member positions that represent the Middlesex, Suffolk, and Essex district. In fact, due to redistricting, Cowett and Bush would represent the Middlesex and Suffolk district if elected.

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