Malone, Soter win primaries for Mass. House seat

Malone, Soter win primaries for Mass. House seat

Republican Michael Soter of Bellingham, left, and Democrat Patrick Malone of Uxbridge won their parties' nominations in the 8th Worcester District primary election on Tuesday, September 4.

BLACKSTONE, Mass. – Democrat Patrick Malone and Republican Michael Soter will face off for the 8th Worcester District state House of Representatives seat in the November general election after winning their party nominations in the state primary Tuesday.

In a political upset, Malone, a 22-year-old former Statehouse intern, beat Kevin Tagliaferri, a Democratic State Committeeman and chairman of the Bellingham Democratic Town Committee, to claim the Democratic nomination by a 55-45 percent lead. While Tagliaferri led his hometown of Bellingham, Malone claimed wide margins in the district’s three other municipalities, including 83 percent of the vote in his hometown of Uxbridge.

Speaking to The Breeze Wednesday morning, he attributed the win to the strength of his volunteer team and a targeted effort to get college students and others traveling out of town to cast absentee ballots.

“We worked hard. Our expectations for turnout were very surpassed, so we were surprised and all the work paid off,” he said.

In November, Malone will face Soter, chairman of the Bellingham Board of Selectmen. Soter beat out former Blackstone Board of Selectmen member Ryan Chamberland to claim the Republican nomination, losing by a narrow margin in Blackstone, Millville and Uxbridge but winning 80 percent of the vote in his hometown of Bellingham for a final 60-40 percent lead.

"It was a great win last night. A great Republican turnout, and we ran a great strong hard campaign and now we move on to November and I look forward to debating the issues with Pat Malone," Soter told The Breeze Wednesday.

The two candidates will compete for the seat vacated by Republican state Rep. Kevin Kuros, who will run for Worcester Register of Deeds in November. Kuros had backed Chamberland for the nomination.

In total, 3,363 residents of the four towns cast ballots in the Republican primary and 2,820 cast ballots in the Democratic primary.