In today's Leominster Champion:
Congressman James P. McGovern (D-Worcester) and state Sen. Jennifer Flanagan (D-Leominster) led a Democratic rally in support of Natalie Higgins, Democratic candidate for the 4th Worcester District, at the Knights of Columbus in Leominster on Sunday, Sept. 18. The event was attended by about 75 people.
Joining Flanagan and McGovern in their support for Higgins were state Reps. Hank Naughton (D-Clinton), Jen Benson (D-Lunenburg), Stephan Hay (D-Fitchburg) and Jonathan Zlotnik (D-Gardner). Also supporting Higgins are Leominster City Councilmembers Sue Chalifoux Zephir, David Cormier, Wayne Nickel andJames Lanciani Jr., and Leominster School Committee membersNona Ojala, Heather Poirier Mazzaferro, Cody Caisse, Suzanne Koehler, Ron Houle and Wendy Anderson.
Also in attendance at the upbeat rally were Steve Kerrigan, candidate for Democratic state party chair and former Democratic nominee for Massachusetts lieutenant governor, Registrar of Deeds for Northern Worcester County Kathleen Reynolds Daigneault, Leominster Democratic City Committee member Bryan Leblanc, Lancaster Selectman Mark Grasso and Democratic State Committee members from surrounding towns.
In his remarks, McGovern said the more he gets to know Higgins, there are three things that he has been so impressed with.
“First, she’s a very hard worker,” said McGovern. “Her win in the primary is evidence of that. No one worked harder than Natalie. The second is that she’s very smart. She brings a fresh a vision and new ideas to the job of state representative and she has a very deep understanding of the issues. And third, Natalie is talking about the issues that really matter to the people of Leominster. She will be a strong representative for them on Beacon Hill.”
“Natalie is committed to the City of Leominster,” Flanagan said. “She knows this city and knows what’s important to the people of Leominster. As state representative, she’s going to be a strong advocate and a great partner for me on Beacon Hill.”
Higgins, executive director of the Public Higher Education Network of Massachusetts, said that public education is among her top priorities. She pointed out that she will be voting no on Question 2.
“Lifting the cap on the number of charter schools allowed in the state will siphon millions of dollars away from our public schools which are already struggling to provide adequate education to our children, and we lose more than $700,000 each year in Leominster,” she said.
She added that the issue of affordability and accessibility of higher education must be addressed so that everyone has an opportunity to go to college without the burden of overwhelming student debt. Higgins also pledged to fight for more access to mental health care and support for small businesses in north central Massachusetts.
“I’m humbled and thrilled by the outpouring of support from Democratic Party leaders as we gear up for the general election in November,” Higgins said. “We have a lot of work to do, and I’m excited to partner with them to ensure that Leominster’s state rep seat remains Democrat.”