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Special State Election

Harvard has not had a representative in the Legislature since former state Rep. Jennifer Benson resigned in December 2019. It’s unfortunate that our seat has been vacant during one of the gravest of crises in town and state history, but on this Tuesday, June 2, after a three-month delay, we will finally vote to send someone to Beacon Hill to represent Harvard, Lunenburg, Shirley, Boxborough, and part of Acton, the five towns of the 37th Middlesex District.

The financial hurricane that is gathering for fiscal 2021 threatens Harvard’s ability to deliver critical services and educate its children. The town will need all the financial and public health assistance it can get. Having someone at the table to forcefully represent our needs as the House crafts its fiscal 2021 budget will be crucial.

The district is lucky to have in Cathy Clark and Dan Sena, two experienced candidates who are familiar with local issues. You can learn about their priorities in the May 22 edition of the Press. (See “Candidates Clark, Sena explain their priorities.”) Now it’s time to choose.

After all, we live in a democracy where, by definition, the most fundamental obligation of citizenship is the casting of your vote. For the first time in generations, the risk of infection by a rogue virus threatens to keep some of our most active citizens, older voters, from the polls. Younger voters, concerned about spreading the virus to family members or their own vulnerability, will be inclined to stay away as well.

But there’s a solution. Apply for an absentee or mail-in ballot this week, mark your selection, and send it to Town Hall. Your vote matters. Don’t let a virus deny you that right.

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