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Former Westford School Committee Chairman Terry Ryan ran unsuccessfully for the state Senate seat vacated this spring by Eileen Donoghue. A newcomer to state level public office, Ryan was a long shot and ultimately came in last in Lowell — the community within the district that brought the greatest number of registered voters with an overall population of about 111,000.
Ryan received 550 votes in Lowell as compared to the candidate who came in second to last with 1,481 votes: William F. Martin, Jr. The winner of the Lowell primary was Edward J. Kennedy who squeaked by Rodney M. Elliot with 2,983 votes to 2,874 votes. John Drinkwater got 2,331 votes in the Lowell Primary.
But in Westford, Ryan was the clear winner with 1,552 votes. Drinkwater came in second in Westford with 558 votes. Kennedy got 549 votes. Martin got 274 votes and Elliott, 119 votes.
In addition to Lowell and Westford, the First Middlesex District covers Pepperell (population approximately 12,000), Groton (population approximately 11,000), Dunstable (population approximately 3,300), and Tyngsborough (population approximately 12,000).
Here’s Ryan statement after the outcome of the primary election:
“While the outcome of the race was not what I had hoped for, I am deeply humbled by the number of votes that I received, particularly in Westford. I couldn’t be prouder of the positive campaign we ran, focusing on the issues and my qualifications as a leader and problem solver. It is clearly a message that resonated with many people, and a message that energized people to join our campaign—many of whom had never participated in a campaign in the past. That is exciting and gives us hope for the future.
I doubt that most people have any idea the amount of work and the number of people required to run a political campaign of this size. I cannot express in words my appreciation and gratitude to each and every person who gave of their time, talent, and treasure to support this campaign, from those who worked on day-to-day operations to everyone who donated, put up signs, held signs, knocked on doors, and voted. I especially thank my wife Kerry, who has worked by my side throughout every step of this process, and my children Alexandra, Matthew, and Emily, who make me proud every day to be their dad.”