After serving as the Bristol Town Council chairman, Democrat Ken Marshall is now in the race for a seat in the Rhode Island House of Representatives.Mr. Marshall soundly beat out Warren candidate, John Hanley, to get his name on the November ballot where he will face Republican Michael Donahue. Mr. Marshall tallied 592 votes, more than doubling Mr. Hanley’s 266.
With his 9-year-old daughter, Amanda, by his side at Bristol’s Democratic headquarters on Metacom Avenue, Mr. Marshall thanked all those who supported him thus far.
“We can’t forget what today represents. You’re the ones who have been standing with me or going door-to-door with me,” he said.
Before he invited all to enjoy the churico and peppers he made for the occasion, Mr. Marshall tried on his campaign hat.
“I will work hard at the state level, as we’ve done here. This town got to where it is because of the people here tonight. We have worked as a team for over two decades. We truly need that same team theory,” he said.
Mr. Marshall also offered congratulations to Armand Bilotti who did not make it through to the general election in the town council race, for the work he has done on town boards.
“We have a slate. Let’s get in and get that slate elected,” Mr. Bilotti said.
Council primary winners
While two former town councilmen, Raymond Cordeiro and Richard Ruggiero, hope to sing “happy days are here again” now that they’ve made it past the primary, “Happy Birthday” was the song for the night as Mr. Ruggiero celebrated his birthday by getting his name on the November ballot.
Just after 8 p.m., Nathan Calouro began entering poll results into a computer spreadsheet showing that he, too, was among the top vote getters, along with Edward P. Stuart, Jr. and newcomer, Timothy Sweeney.
Once the unofficial results were brought into Bristol’s Democratic headquarters and the winners announced, Mr. Stuart asked for a moment of silence to honor 9/11 before he acknowledged his early success.
“This is the first jog. Now comes the sprint to November 6,” said Mr. Stuart. “I’m very humbled and honored.”
Likewise, Mr. Calouro recognized that the work behind the candidates paled in comparison to the work ahead.
“Honestly, we’re all a team,” he said.
Although Mr. Cordeiro was not re-elected to the town council seat in 2010, he remained optimistic for the November race.
“This is outstanding for the chance to represent again,” he said.
In his first political race, Mr. Sweeney was the second highest vote getter, with only 100 ballots fewer than Mr. Stuart. Because he did not receive the party’s endorsement, Mr. Sweeney did not share in the celebration at party headquarters.
“They’re bringing me into the fold now,” he said of his fellow Democrats.
Mr. Sweeney attributed his successful primary run to his grassroots campaigning efforts. A method he’ll continue to use through November.
“I’ve been knocking on doors. I don’t think people respond to signs. They like the face-to-face contact,” he said. “I plan to stay in contact with voters through Facebook and using technology.”
Democratic primary results
(Top 5 advance to general elections)
Edward P. Stuart, Jr. 1,147
Timothy E. Sweeney 1,047
Nathan Calouro 1,020
Raymond Cordeiro 876
Richard Ruggiero 781
Armand Bilotti 754
Steve Katz 593
Representative, District 68
(Top vote-getter advances)
Ken Marshall 592
John Hanley 266