What do Westborough and Gaul have in common?
Like “Omnia Gallia,” Westborough is divided into three parts. And if Caesar, the originator of the one-party-rule, three-part-partition, outer Province political process, had named the Westborough precincts, Precincts 1 and 3 might now be known as Outer Sight; Precinct 2, Outer Mind; and Precincts 4 and 5, Outer Luck.
But, aside from a clumsy historical comparison, why is this significant to Westborough voters?
- First of all, most people are unaware of this. However, Westborough was gerrymandered into three Districts by the Democrats ten years ago, the political penance for consistently not voting Democrat – a prime example of the primary objective of one-party government - self-perpetuation.
- This obviously means that Westborough’s representation on Beacon Hill has been subdivided into three distinct Districts in which Westborough has the fewest number of voters.
- Which, in turn, makes it very unlikely that a candidate from Westborough will ever have the voter base to be elected as a State Representative.
- Which, in turn, means that as well as our Representatives carry forward the interests of our town, human nature suggests that priority will be given to their home communities with larger voter populations.
- And, due to the 2012 redistricting, as of the next election, four of the five Westborough precincts will have a new Representative, and potentially, all five.
If that does not seem quite fair, I agree with you. Still, this is where we are, and here is what we can do about it:
Precincts 1 and 3
After Democrat redistricting, these precincts will be now be connected to parts of Northborough and Marlborough (instead of Shrewsbury). Steve Levy (R) is the incumbent from Marlborough moving into essentially a new District.
This precinct has also changed and now includes all of Holliston and Hopkinton, part of Southborough and one precinct in Westborough. Marty Lamb (R) is running against the Democrat incumbent.
Precincts 4 and 5
These precincts will now be aligned with Shrewsbury instead of Grafton and Sutton. George Peterson (R), the current Representative will be replaced by Matt Beaton (R), who presently represents precincts 1 and 3.
There are at least three ways of looking at this as Westborough voters:
- On the darker side, and with all due respect to our existing Representatives, we can lament that the interests of Westborough will not be as consistently advocated as when a Westborough resident is representing Westborough, and most certainly when Westborough’s interests have been subdivided into three parts and with both parties.
- On the brighter side, were Westborough to have three Republican Representatives elected we would have three times the influence on Beacon Hill – potentially very significant in a one-party State government structure.
- And, very importantly, electing three Republican Representatives will bring the GOP even closer to a state-wide total of 54, the number of opposition Reps needed to procedurally enforce voting rules, and put an end to the wide latitude that the Majority Party exerts to ignore the Minority party and bully through their agenda.
So, what can you do, and what should you do? First and foremost, meet the candidates. The Westborough and Northborough Town Committees are holding a meet and greet for Representative Steve Levy at the Celtic Tavern on Thursday, May 3 from 6pm-8pm. Please stop by and meet him. Marty Lamb has already held several well attended “meet and greets”, with more planned, the next scheduled for June 7.
Secondly, think about what one-party government has done to dilute Westborough’s representation on Beacon Hill, and be ready to make a statement through your votes that Westborough must have a consolidated political effort that finally secures our fair share of State funding.
I welcome your on-line comments on the Patch blog. However, a number of you have told me that you have things to say but are not comfortable responding publically. I am eager to hear from you, so to those people, here is my personal email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.