Republican joins Worcester and Middle...

Republican joins Worcester and Middlesex state senate race

Posted in the Leominster Forum

independent_vote r

Leominster, MA

#1 Jul 13, 2014
Bastien to take on Flanagan in write-in contest
Sentinel & Enterprise
UPDATED: 07/10/2014 06:50:07 AM EDT0 COMMENTS

Richard Bastien... in the runningSentinel and Enterprise staff photos can be ordered by visiting our SmugMug site.
Richard Bastien ... in the running

Sentinel and Enterprise staff photos can be ordered by visiting our SmugMug site.
State House News Service

GARDNER -- After failing to win back his old House seat in 2012, former Republican Rep. Richard Bastien plans to challenge Sen. Jennifer Flanagan this fall, but neither candidate will be on the ballot for their respective parties' primaries on Sept. 9.

Bastien, of Gardner, announced Wednesday that he will run a write-in campaign for the Worcester and Middlesex District seat Flanagan has held since 2009.

Flanagan, a Leominster Democrat, ran into problems filing campaign documents in April and failed to qualify for the ballot. She since has mounted a write-in or sticker campaign to retain her seat.

Bastien represented the Second Worcester House District in the 2011-2012 session before being defeated by Democratic Rep. Jonathan Zlotnik. Bastien now works as a teacher and retail clerk.

Bastien attempted to mount a comeback against Zlotnik this year, but failed to gather enough signatures to qualify for the House election.

Neither the Democratic or Republican Party has put forward an official candidate for the Senate race, so the primary ballots will both be write-in only.

"With Sen. Flanagan not being on the ballot, a lot of people have reached out to me and contacted me about running," Bastien said on Wednesday.

"It's a bit quirky but it's definitely something we're looking forward to putting a ground game on and get going," Bastien said of the rare dual write-in election.

Leominster residents Steven Cote and Aaron Arsenault have also said they are running write-in campaigns for the seat as independent candidates.

City Editor Chris Camire contributed to this report.

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