Thursday, February 06, 2014 • 10:59 AM Comments ()

9th Hampden Field Gets Crowded

posted by Maureen Turner

Another candidate has entered the race for the 9th Hampden state rep seat, soon to be vacated by incumbent Sean Curran, who has decided not to run for re-election.

Earlier this week, Robert J. Underwood announced that he’s taken out nomination papers for the seat.

Underwood is a former Democrat who is running as an Independent. On his campaign website, Underwood faults the major parties for the woes that face ordinary Americans: “The Democrats have joined with the Republicans in the de-industrialization of the United States. Look at the closed factories and vacant lots. The designation of Democrat and Republican is merely a gang label to determine which group gets the spoils, licenses, civil service jobs etc.

“When you vote for one of them, you are voting to ship your job to China, and to pay taxes to subsidize someone who will take your job.”

Underwood also offers a harsh critique of the “Progressive wing of the Democratic Party,” which he calls “ineffective [at] best, frauds at the worse. While they say they are against war and unemployment they will support the very candidate [sic] which create that war and unemployment every time, while putting on a show of protesting the rest of the year.”

Underwood describes himself as “the only candidate in the Ninth Hampden District who wants to protect the interests of the average working person.”

School Committee member Peter Murphy has already announced his candidacy for the state rep seat, while former City Councilor Jose Tosado has changed his campaign finance account to reflect his candidacy. And—as Western Mass Politics & Insight’s Matt Szafranski recently reminded me, after I left his name out of a recent post on the campaign—Ed Collins, of the electricians’ union, is also considered a likely candidate. (Collins is the brother of School Committee member Chris Collins and of Tim Collins, head of the city’s teachers’ union.)

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