Democratic State Representative hopeful and former Mayor John Hanlon said this week that he has decided to continue his efforts to represent the city of Everett in the statehouse, despite his special election primary loss earlier this month, with a sticker campaign in the April 2 general election.
Hanlon who knows he is facing an uphill battle to win the seat as a write-in candidate said that his campaign will be producing two different informational mailers, designed to help voters who want to vote for a Democrat but don’t want to vote for the Democratic candidate.
“The first will provide instructions for people who wish to vote with a sticker and will include a detachable sticker they can stick to the ballot on election day,“ explained Hanlon. “The other will describe the process for writing in a candidate.”
State law tries to account for “voter intent” on write-in ballots, so some errors in the process may be overlooked, as long as the intent of the voter is clear from the ballot. For instance, if a name is written in, or “stickered in” on a blank line, but the wrong oval is shaded on the ballot, the vote still counts for the write in candidate.
Hanlon said that he was prepared to close down his campaign in the days following the Special Primary Election, which was won by City Councilor Wayne Matewsky, “but we kept getting calls from people who said they wanted to have a real Democratic choice for State Representative and they asked me to run. So, we’re going to run this sticker campaign and we’ll see what happens.”
Fewer then 4,000 democratic voters turned out for the Special Primary on March 5, and with six candidates in the race at the time, Matewsky won the election with barely one-quarter of the voters (982 votes out of 3,894) votes. Hanlon came in a fairly close third, with 830 votes, less than 100 behind the winner.
If Hanlon can ensure that his 830 votes turn out in the general election and he can convince enough general election voters to take the time to write-in or stick on his name, he could pull off on the largest Election Day upsets in Everett voter history.