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Payano Drops Out Of State Senate Race

Jul 21, 2018 01:47PM ● By Bill Gilman

Lawrence City Councilor Pavel Payano,

The race for the Democratic nomination for State Senate from the 2nd Essex-Middlesex District has become a two-person race.
Lawrence City Councilor Pavel Payano announced Saturday that he his ending his campaign, leaving Andover attorney and former state Sen. Barry Finegold and Dracut resident and Lawrence firefighter Mike Armano as the two remaining candidates in the Sept. 4 Primary.
Dracut resident and Greater Lowell Technical High School Committee Chairman Joe Espinola is the only Republican in the race to succeed state Sen. Barbara L'Italien.
 “Several months ago, we launched a campaign to bring new representation to the 2nd Essex and Middlesex State Senate seat. We set out to speak to voters about a unifying vision which would improve the lives of residents of Andover, Dracut, Lawrence, and Tewksbury," said Payano, in a statement. "Throughout this campaign we have connected with volunteers and supporters who were excited to be a part of a movement that would create positive change in their community. I am proud of all of them and the work that we have done so far."
While he is ending his campaign, Payano may yet have a major influence on the result of the Democratic Primary. Payano is a popular civic leader in Lawrence and winning the city has been critical to the success of Democrats looking to win State Senate seats in the past.
In his statement announcing the end of his campaign, Payano did not indicate he was ready to offer an endorsement of either Armano or Finegold. Rather, he went out of his way to voice support for the MA-3 Congressional bid of state Rep. Juana Matias, a fellow Lawrence resident. He indicated that he ,would be actively campaigning on behalf of Matias in her bid for the party nomination against a crowded Democratic field.
"Running parallel to our campaign and with a similar message of changing the status quo, Juana Matias has shown that there is an incredible possibility for a young professional from Lawrence to be the next Congressional representative for the 3rd District," said Payano. "I believe that the issues facing our country are profound and with Juana Matias we have the opportunity to create the type of positive change that I have been advocating for.  It is for this reason that we have decided to end our campaign for State Senate and focusing all of our energy into electing the next Congressperson for this district."

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