Friday, June 1, 2018

Third Congressional District Candidate Forum in Littleton

The Littleton Town Democratic Committee in collaboration with Westford Indivisible recently held a forum in the Couper Room of the Reuben Hoar Library with three of the candidates running for the Third Congressional District to replace retiring Representative Niki Tsongas. The three candidates – Barbara L’Italien, Dan Koh, and Bopha Malone – are among thirteen Democratic candidates vying for this congressional seat by first winning the September 4thDemocratic Primary. The last time this district experienced such a large field of candidates was in 1976 when current Senator Ed Markey won the primary for representative in a 12-person field. Many of the current candidates cite the results of the 2016 election as the motivating force behind their decisions to run for office.
Since the end of last year the candidates have been appearing individually and in small forums in towns and cities around the Third District attempting to distinguish themselves from each other. The forum in Littleton was an opportunity for the audience of twenty-five to hear first-hand the views and proposals of the three candidates.
Barbara L’Italien is currently a State Senator from Andover and one of only two elected officials in the field. Senator L’Italien noted her record of constituent services in a district of broad diversity. She led the fight in the State House for marriage equality and, as a parent of an autistic child, ran a successful campaign to secure medical coverage for people along the autism spectrum and those with intellectual disabilities.
Dan Koh was a former chief of staff for Mayor Marty Walsh and left the position to run for office. He emphasized his success in addressing constituent concerns in the Walsh administration. He spoke about this country’s past in welcoming immigrants, such as those in his family, and the need to return to a nation of inclusiveness.
Bopha Malone from Lowell is a bank vice president. She spoke about her past as a Cambodian refugee and the many opportunities she was given in this country to become a successful business person and live the American Dream. She regretted that the existence of extreme inequality in the country is now preventing many people from attaining that Dream.
Whichever Democrat wins the prize on September 4th, he/she will face Republican Rick Green, a Pepperell businessman, in the general election in November 2018.

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