Published March 6, 2020




MELROSE — At-Large City Councilor Kate Lipper-Garabedian is headed to Beacon Hill.

The Mystic Avenue lawyer and mother of two scored an impressive victory Tuesday over Republican opponent Brandon Reid in the special election for the open 32nd Middlesex District seat in the state House of Representatives. Unofficially, Lipper-Garabedian, a Democrat, captured 81.5 percent of the votes cast throughout the district, which is all of Melrose, half of Wakefield and a sliver of Malden.

In Melrose, she received a total of 8,084 votes to Reid’s 1,680. It certainly didn’t hurt Lipper-Garabedian that a contested state Democratic presidential primary was held the same day. Across the district, Lipper-Garabedian got 10,816 votes to Reid’s 2,461.

She carried each of the Melrose’s 14 precincts by wide margins.   

Tuesday’s special election was needed after Paul Brodeur was elected mayor of Melrose in November, and resigned his House position. In the special primary election held last month, Lipper-Garabedian bested fellow Democrats Ann McGonigle Santos, a popular Wakefield town councilor, and Malden political operative Mathew Helman.

Reid, a schools’ facilities and security manager who lives on Grove Street, waged a write-in campaign and got enough signatures to win his party’s nomination.

The 32nd Middlesex seat is up again for election in November.

Lipper-Garabedian said in an email, “Thank you, voters in the 32nd Middlesex District, for selecting me to be your next State Representative. I am immensely grateful for the efforts of the dozens of volunteers on the campaign trail. Together, we worked to ensure that the District is represented by someone who believes passionately about the role government can play in supporting people and their families. Thank you to Mark, Harrison, and Oscar for your constant love and encouragement.

“During this campaign, I visited more than 1,000 doors and met with countless constituents to discuss the issues are important to you. I thank the residents of Malden, Melrose, and Wakefield who made the time to speak with us over the course of the campaign and who came out to vote in this election in hopes of a strong future for our District. Let’s keep our conversations going.

“I’m proud to have support from so many current and former elected colleagues who share my vision for the District:

• State Senator Jason Lewis

• District Attorney Marian Ryan

• Melrose Mayor Paul Brodeur and former Melrose Mayors Rob Dolan and Gail Infurna

• Malden City Councillors Debbie DeMaria, Steve Winslow, Amanda Linehan, and Ryan O’Malley

• Malden School Committee Members Adam Weldai, Rob McCarthy, and Jennifer Spadafora

• Melrose City Councilors Jennifer Grigoraitis, Jack Eccles, Leila Migliorelli, Chris Cinella, Jeff McNaught, Robb Stewart, Mark Garipay, Shawn MacMaster, and Cory Thomas

• Melrose School Committee Members Jennifer McAndrew, John Obremski, and Jennifer Razi-Thomas

• Wakefield Town Councilors Ann McGonigle Santos, Jonathan Chines, and Julie Smith-Galvin

• Wakefield School Committee Members Chris Callanan and Tom Markham

• Former Melrose City Councilors Mike Zwirko, Jennifer Lemmerman, Frank Wright, Bob Boisselle, Peter Mortimer, and Scott Forbes

“I am humbled by this support. As your State Representative, I’m committed to working hard on the issues that matter to us and to ensuring you are involved in the process,” her email ended.

Brandon Reid, displaying complete grace in defeat, wrote, “First, I would like to congratulate Kate Lipper-Garabedian and her team on a successful, well-run campaign. We may have ideological differences but she’s an intelligent and thoughtful person with a great work ethic. Although she had advantages going into this election, she continued to campaign hard throughout, taking nothing for granted, and that is commendable. I’m hopeful that she will be a strong representative for everyone in this district, and strive to achieve bipartisanship in her efforts on Beacon Hill.

“I would like to thank the many of you who have supported my campaign and came out to vote for me in this election. You are so very appreciated and your votes did matter. Although we did not get the result we desired, your voices were heard, and they are clear: You want representation from someone who will protect you — the taxpayers, and advocate for government transparency and accountability. You want to see real progress and change, including better infrastructure, more affordable and accessible veteran and senior services, and lower fees for business operations. You want fairness and a government that works for you.

“This was my first run, and I’m very proud of what we have accomplished together, from a successful write-in campaign — which is no easy feat — to a respectable showing in the general election, despite little resources or political support. We also waged this effort in a very Democratic region and state, during an extremely politically divisive time, in the midst of a Democratic presidential primary.

“Anyway, it’s been a heck of couple months and I wouldn’t change any of it. I am glad that I could demonstrate to my students, and others, that you can be a part of the change. I am proof that anyone can take the initiative and run for office.

“Lastly, many thanks to my family, friends, local Republican leadership, and all the voters in this election. You guys made this campaign possible and I’m grateful for each and every one of you. God Bless everyone.”