Massachusetts' 6th Congressional District elections, 2014

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2012

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Massachusetts' 6th Congressional District

General Election Date
November 4, 2014

Primary Date
September 9, 2014

Incumbent prior to election:
John Tierney Democratic Party
John F Tierney.jpg

Race Ratings
Cook Political Report: Toss Up[1]

Sabato's Crystal Ball: Lean D[2]

Fairvote's Monopoly Politics: Lean D[3]

Massachusetts U.S. House Elections
District 1District 2District 3District 4District 5District 6District 7District 8District 9

2014 U.S. Senate Elections

Flag of Massachusetts.png
The 6th Congressional District of Massachusetts will hold an election for the U.S. House of Representatives on November 4, 2014.

Heading into the election the incumbent is John Tierney (D), who was first elected in 1996.

He faces four primary challengers in the Democratic primary. He potentially faces a re-match with Republican candidate Richard Tisei in his bid for re-election.

Tierney is a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Frontline Program. The program was designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents heading into the 2014 election.[4]

The 2012 election race was a close race, with John Tierney securing victory with a 1.1% margin of victory. The district has been evaluated as leaning Democrat, with Cook Political Report giving it a Partisan Voter Index of D+7.[5] One of the major factors that contributed to the closeness of the race was competitor Richard Tisei's ability to out raise and out spend Tierney.[6] Tisei's efforts were bolstered by his own standing as a liberal and openly gay Republican, as well as the controversy surrounding Tierney's wife's legal problems.[7]

Tisei is also included in the National Republican Congressional Committee's Young Guns program.[8] This program highlights challengers who represent the GOP's best chances to pick up congressional seats in the general election.[9]

Candidate Filing Deadline Primary Election General Election
May 6, 2014
September 9, 2014
November 4, 2014

Primary: Massachusetts is one of 21 states with a mixed primary system. Unaffiliated voters are allowed to vote in the primary election. They may choose which party ballot they wish to vote on and still remain unaffiliated.[10]

Voter registration: To vote in the primary, voters had to register by August 20, 2014. For the general election, the voter registration deadline is October 15, 2014.[11]

See also: Massachusetts elections, 2014

Incumbent: Heading into the election the incumbent is John Tierney (D), who was first elected in 1996.

Massachusetts' 6th Congressional District is located in the northeastern portion of the state and includes Middlesex and Essex counties.[12]

Candidates

Race background

Incumbent John Tierney (D) is a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Frontline Program. The program was designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents heading into the 2014 election.[4] The 2012 election race was a close race, with John Tierney securing victory with a 1.1% margin of victory. The district has been evaluated as leaning Democrat, with Cook Political Report giving it a Partisan Voter Index of D+7.[18] One of the major factors that contributed to the closeness of the race was competitor Richard Tisei's ability to out raise and out spend Tierney.[19] Tisei's efforts were bolstered by his own standing as a liberal and openly gay Republican, as well as the controversy surrounding Tierney's wife's legal problems.[20] Tisei was also included in the National Republican Congressional Committee's Young Guns program.[21] This program highlights challengers who represent the GOP's best chances to pick up congressional seats in the general election.[22] However,Tierney has historically done well in his district, winning the previous election by a 13% margin of victory. Consequently, despite the strong hits he took as a result of his wife's troubles and being outspent by his opponent, Tierney was able to retain a sufficient portion of his base to win re-election.

Politico published a list in August 2013 of the five primaries to watch in 2014. Massachusetts' 6th Congressional District was included on the list.[23]

Vulnerable after the scandal surrounding his wife, Tierney barely managed to win re-election in 2012.[23] In 2010, Patrice Tierney pleaded guilty to helping her brother file false tax returns in connection with his operation of an illegal offshore casino.[23] Republicans criticized Tiernery about his wife, alleging that he was fully aware of her conduct.[23] He ultimately defeated Richard Tisei (D) by fewer than 4,000 votes — or 1 percent of the vote -- in the general election.

Tisei, a former state house minority leader, is running again in 2014.[23] This time, Tierney has an added obstacle for re-election, a Democratic primary. Seth Moulton, a Harvard-educated former Marine, launched a campaign to unseat the congressman. He has recruited veteran Democratic strategist Joe Trippi to help with his campaign.[23] Also running is Marisa DeFranco (D), an attorney who ran unsuccessfully for Senate in 2012.[23]

Key votes

Below are important votes the current incumbent cast during the 113th Congress.

Government shutdown

See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Voted "No" On September 30, 2013, the House passed a final stopgap spending bill before the shutdown went into effect. The bill included a one-year delay of the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate and would have also stripped the bill of federal subsidies for congressional members and staff. It passed through the House with a vote of 228-201.[24] At 1 a.m. on October 1, 2013, one hour after the shutdown officially began, the House voted to move forward with going to a conference. In short order, Sen. Harry Reid rejected the call to conference.[25] Tierney voted against the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.[26]

Yea3.png The shutdown ended on October 16, 2013, when the House took a vote on HR 2775 after it was approved by the Senate. The bill to reopen the government lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[27] The House passed the legislation shortly after the Senate, by a vote of 285-144, with all 144 votes against the legislation coming from Republican members. Tierney voted for HR 2775.[28]

Issues

Controversy

Campaign accounts

Reports circulated in July 2014 that Tisei, a former state Senator, spent funds from his legislative campaign account on polling for a congressional bid in 2012. Under campaign finance law, this is prohibited as only federal funds may be spent on federal races.[29]

Republican convention

Richard Tisei (R) announced on March 21, 2014, that he would not attend the state Republican convention because of his opposition to the state committee’s more socially conservative platform.[30][31] The Massachusetts Republican State Committee approved language in its party platform in February 2014 that included opposition to abortion and gay marriage.[30][32]

“I don’t want to go and be seen in any way to be endorsing that. I don’t really feel comfortable being at a convention where the platform takes the party backward, rather than forward, as far as appealing to a large group of Massachusetts voters,” Tisei said.[30] Tisei, who is gay, got married in 2013.[32]

Polls

Democratic primary

Democratic primary
Poll John Tierney (Inc.) Seth MoultonMarisa DeFrancoJohn DevineUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Emerson College
April 3-7 2014
64%10%10%2%14%+/-5.4326
DCCC
March 26-27, 2014
64%17%0%0%20%+/-4.9402
AVERAGES 64% 13.5% 5% 1% 17% +/-5.15 364
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org


General election

General election match-up
Poll John Tierney (D) Richard Tisei (R)UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Emerson College
June 12-18, 2014
40%45%16%+/-6.12253
Emerson College
April 3-7, 2014
44%44%13%+/-5.4326
AVERAGES 42% 44.5% 14.5% +/-5.76 289.5
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org

Endorsements

Richard Tisei

  • The Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund endorsed Tisei on February 25, 2014.[34]
  • The National Republican Congressional Committee added Tisei to their "On the Radar" list in November 2013. According to the NRCC, candidates that make this list receive "...the tools they need to run successful, winning campaigns against their Democratic opponents."[35][36]

Media


Richard Tisei's July 2014 ad, "Tisei's Take on Leadership."

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce's May 2014 ad for Tisei.

Richard Tisei

Former state Senate Minority Leader Richard Tisei (R) released an ad on July 29, 2014, that focused on his prior experience.[37]

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce launched an ad campaign for Richard Tisei in his bid against incumbent John Tierney in May 2014.[38] The ad buy was worth approximately $350,000.[38]

Campaign contributions

John Tierney

Candidates for Congress are required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Tierney’s reports.[39]

John F. Tierney (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[40]April 15, 2013$22,170.06$264,135.36$(60,416.24)$373,413.97
July Quarterly[41]July 16, 2013$225,889.18$214,317.05$(63,981.70)$376,224.53
October Quarterly[42]October 14, 2013$376,224.53$251,259.49$(66,328.56)$561,155.46
Year-end[43]January 31, 2014$561,155$228,408$(80,622)$708,940
April Quarterly[44]April 15, 2014$708,940$348,386$(80,608)$976,718
Running totals
$1,306,505.9$(351,956.5)

Seth Moulton

Seth Moulton (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
October Quarterly[45]October 15, 2013$0$355,548$(53,813)$301,735
Year End[46]April 15, 2014$301,735$253,070$(159,024)$395,781
April Quarterly[47]April 15, 2014$395,781$469,457$(214,116)$651,122
Running totals
$1,078,075$(426,953)

Marisa DeFranco

Marisa DeFranco (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
October Quarterly[48]October 15, 2013$0$24,866$(2,037)$22,828
Year End[49]January 31, 2014$22,828$19,247$(7,984)$34,090
April Quarterly[50]April 15, 2014$34,090$22,193$(24,823)$31,460
Running totals
$66,306$(34,844)

John Devine

John Devine (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[51]April 15, 2014$0$40$(0)$40
Running totals
$40$(0)

Richard Tisei

Richard Tisei (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[52]April 15, 2013$0$17,510$(10,841)$7,606
July Quarterly[53]July 15, 2013$7,606$119$(6,097)$1,628
October Quarterly[54]October 15, 2014$1,628$158$(0)$1,786
Year End[55]January 31, 2014$1,786$434,768$(42,549)$394,005
April Quarterly[56]April 15, 2014$394,005$301,343$(126,093)$569,256
Running totals
$753,898$(185,580)

District history

Candidate ballot accecss
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2012

The 6th District of Massachusetts held an election for the U.S. House of Representatives on November 6, 2012, in which incumbent John Tierney (D) won re-election. He defeated Richard Tisei (R) and Daniel Fishman (L).[57]


U.S. House, Massachusetts District 6 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJohn Tierney Incumbent 46.4% 180,942
     Republican Richard Tisei 45.3% 176,612
     Libertarian Daniel Fishman 4.3% 16,739
     N/A All Others 0.1% 514
     N/A Blank Votes 3.9% 15,045
Total Votes 389,852
Source: Massachusetts Secretary of State "Return of Votes"

2010

On November 2, 2010, John Tierney won re-election to the United States House. He defeated Bill Hudak (R) in the general election.[58]

U.S. House, Massachusetts District 6 General Election, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJohn F. Tierney 56.8% 142,732
     Republican Bill Hudak 43% 107,930
     N/A Write-in 0.2% 419
Total Votes 251,081

See also

External links

References

  1. Cook Political Report, "2014 HOUSE RACE RATINGS FOR June 26, 2014," accessed August 7, 2014
  2. Sabato's Crystal Ball, "2014 House Races," accessed August 7, 2014
  3. Fairvote, "FairVote Releases Projections for the 2014 Congressional Elections," accessed August 7, 2014
  4. 4.0 4.1 Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, "DCCC Chairman Steve Israel Announces 2013-2014 Frontline Members," March 5, 2013
  5. Cook Political Report "Partisan Voting Index Districts of the 113th Congress: 2004 & 2008" accessed July 2014
  6. Open Secrets "2012 Race: Massachusetts District 06" accessed July 2014
  7. NYTimes "House race ratings" accessed July 2014
  8. Gloucester Times, "Tisei gets national Young Guns endorsement," accessed April 15, 2014
  9. NRCC "Young Guns 2012" July 2014
  10. Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Website, "Massachusetts Directory of Political Parties and Designations," accessed January 3, 2014
  11. Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Website, "Voter Registration Information," accessed January 3, 2014
  12. Massachuestts Redistricting Map "Map" accessed August 31, 2012
  13. John Devine for Congress, "Home," accessed February 17, 2014
  14. Red Mass Group, "Marisa DeFranco to run for Congress in MA 6th District," accessed February 26, 2014
  15. Salem News, "Challengers eye Democratic nomination," accessed March 3, 2014
  16. Massachusetts Secretary of State Elections, "Democratic Primary Candidates," accessed June 5, 2014
  17. Tewksbury Advocate, "Tisei renews Congressional battle," accessed February 3, 2014
  18. Cook Political Report "Partisan Voting Index Districts of the 113th Congress: 2004 & 2008" accessed March 2013
  19. Open Secrets "2012 Race: Massachusetts District 06" accessed March 2013
  20. NYTimes "House race ratings" accessed March 2013
  21. Gloucester Times, "Tisei gets national Young Guns endorsement," accessed April 15, 2014
  22. NRCC "Young Guns 2012" March 2013
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 23.3 23.4 23.5 23.6 Politico, "5 House primaries to watch," accessed August 8, 2013
  24. Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
  25. Buzzfeed, "Government Shutdown: How We Got Here," accessed October 1, 2013
  26. Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
  27. The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
  28. U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 550," accessed October 31, 2013
  29. Boston Globe, "Officials appear to misuse Mass. campaign funds," accessed July 29, 2014
  30. 30.0 30.1 30.2 Hamilton Wenham Patch, "Tisei Spurns GOP Convention," accessed March 24, 2014
  31. Glouster Times, "Tisei skips GOP convention over gay rights stand," accessed March 24, 2014
  32. 32.0 32.1 Boston Globe, "Richard Tisei to boycott GOP convention," accessed March 24, 2014
  33. Boston Globe, "US Chamber of Commerce launches ad backing Richard Tisei," accessed July 30, 2014
  34. Washington Post, "LGBT group to back two gay Republicans for Congress," accessed February 26, 2014
  35. Roll Call, "House Republicans Put 36 Recruits ‘On the Radar’" accessed November 21, 2013
  36. NRCC Young Guns, "List," accessed March 20, 2014
  37. Youtube, "Tisei's Take on Leadership," accessed July 30, 2014
  38. 38.0 38.1 Boston Globe, "US Chamber of Commerce launches ad backing Richard Tisei," accessed July 30, 2014
  39. Federal Election Commission, "John F. Tierney Summary Report," accessed July 25, 2013
  40. Federal Election Commission, "John F. Tierney April Quarterly," accessed July 25, 2013
  41. Federal Election Commission, "John F. Tierney July Quarterly," accessed July 25, 2013
  42. Federal Election Commission, "John F. Tierney October Quarterly," accessed October 23, 2013
  43. Federal Election Commission, "Year End Report," accessed February 17, 2014
  44. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed April 21, 2014
  45. Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed May 15, 2014
  46. Federal Election Commission, "Year End," accessed May 15, 2014
  47. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed May 12, 2014
  48. Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed March 4, 2014
  49. Federal Election Commission, "Year End Report," accessed March 4, 2014
  50. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed May 12, 2014
  51. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed May 15, 2014
  52. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed March 4, 2014
  53. Federal Election Commission, "July Quarterly," accessed March 4, 2014
  54. Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed March 4, 2014
  55. Federal Election Commission, "Year End Report," accessed March 4, 2014
  56. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed May 12, 2014
  57. Politico, "2012 Election Map, Massachusetts"
  58. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013