On the GOP side failed Senate candidate Doug Obey is facing Bill McKinney, a former MDC Commissioner under Romney and an unsuccessful candidate for this very seat in the past. As frugal as he is tall, McKinney once made national headlines by flying into Pheonix, driving to southern California, and then staying at a campground to save money during a RNC. Obey, like his GOP counterparts nationwide, got “a thumpin” by Sen. Marian Walsh in November. Reusing it from his last campaign, Obey has got a decent webpage up already, the only one I could find.
On Democratic ticket will be Steve Bilafer, Joanne Flatley and Anthony Antonellis. Bilfar is a former aide to Tom Reily, Flately is a Dedham School Committee member and Antonellis, a Selectman, is the only Democrat from Westwood who has pulled papers. New to the race is Thomas M. Boncek, also from Dedham. He pulled papers on Thursday but I’ve never read his name in the papers before.
Aside from Boncek, two other Democrats have not yet returned their papers. They include Dedham Planning Board and Local 7 member Jay O’Brien and the Chairman of Dedham’s Town Meeting’s Precinct Chairmen, Cheryl Shoenfeld. [Update: Shoenfeld hasn’t returned her papers yet, but I saw an ad for her today, so it looks like she is in for sure.]
All the GOPers have returned their papers, but independents Margot Pyle and Stephen B. MacAusland have not yet. They have until Tuesday to do so, if they want to run.
My early prediction here is that with so many Democrats from Dedham in the running (especially if O’Brien goes all the way) that Antonellis will squeak in. Having recently had his name on the ballot, the couple Republicans who will be voting will cast their ballots for Obey rather than the almost perennial candidate McKinney (he is a Commissioner of the Trust Funds in Dedham, but I think that race was uncontested and I doubt most people even know there is a Commission for the Trust Funds). I’d be surprised if Pyle returns her papers. She is no spring chicken and wouldn’t be able to keep up in a campaign against the others. MacAusland is only running to raise awareness about global warming and won’t be a factor.
If the General turns out to be Antonellis (D, Westwood) vs Obey (R, Westwood) then that would leave a big opening for the Dedham Independent, McMurtry. Dedham is by far the biggest town in the district. McMurtry is very well known and respected in his hometown and if two outsiders are on the ballot I think you might see a lot of people in Dedham pulling the lever next to the favorite son. Not only that, but he owns the Dedham Community Theatre right in Dedham Square. A couple banners up on the marquee would be seen by thousands everyday. You can’t ask for a better sign location than that.