Contrary Belmont: Voters Support Coakley, Yes on Casino Ban, Gas Tax Index

Belmont was true blue for Martha Coakley as the left-leaning town’s voters gave the Democrat their support in her run for Massachusetts governor against Republican Charlie Baker in the Massachusetts General Election on Tuesday, Nov. 5.

But the “Town of Homes” backing wasn’t enough as Baker won a squeaker over Coakley by just fewer than 38,000 votes as of 7 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 6.

Belmont voters also bucked the state-wide trend on two of the four ballot questions, voting for a casino ban in Massachusetts and supporting continuing the automatic increase of the state’s gas tax by the rate of inflation.

Residents did support the measure requiring employers to provide paid leave and voted no on expanding the bottle bill.

Nearly three of five Belmont voters turned out to cast a ballot at the town’s eight precincts, according to Town Clerk Ellen Cushman. A total of 10,310 voters cast ballots on Tuesday.

“We have strong voter interest across town,” said Cushman at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, noting lines were common through out the day at polling places.

The 57 percent participation rate is significantly lower than the 67 percent who showed up for the last gubernatorial election in 2010 when 11,140 voter went to the polls.

Complete results can be found at the Town Clerk’s web page here.

In the feature Governor’s race, Coakley defeated Baker, 5,598 to 4,296, or 55 percent to 42 percent. Independent Evan Falchuk received 224 votes, or 2.2 percent, slightly lower than his statewide result of 3.3 percent.

Baker slightly improved on his result in Belmont of four years ago when he was defeated by sitting governor Deval Patrick, 6,514 to 3,953.

On the ballot questions, Belmont voters ran counter to the state on the casino bill, Question 3, voting to approve a casino ban by a wide margin, 56 percent to 44 percent. Statewide, the measure was soundly defeated, 60 percent to 40 percent.

Belmont also voted against the rest of the state on removing the automatic indexing of the state gas tax, Question 1. Statewide the measure passed 53 percent to 47 percent, while being voted down by residents, 58 percent to 42 percent.

Residents joined state voters in rejecting expanding the bottle bill, Question 2, but by a tighter margin, 55 percent to 45 percent, as opposed to the overwhelming vote, three to one, statewide. And they approved in greater numbers the earned sick time measure, Question 4, 65 percent to 35 percent, while Massachusetts voters approved the question 60/40.

And 74 percent of residents voted in favor of the non-binding Question 5, asking State Rep. Dave Rogers to vote in favor of legislation that would regulate and tax marijuana in the same manner as alcohol.

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