MEDFORD — Fresh off his victory Tuesday, Senator-elect Edward Markey said he hoped to revive the gun control debate in Congress after 20 years of pressing for measures like a ban on assault weapons, but avoided any direct discussion of the re-election campaign he will have to mount over the next 16 months.
Markey prevailed over Republican Gabriel Gomez in a special election for U.S. Senate, winning by a 10 percentage point margin, though voters on the steamy summer day set records for the low number of ballots cast in the statewide election. The vast majority of eligible voters took a pass on the election.
“I feel great. It was a tremendous victory and I know that it was about the issues. I know it was about the differences that existed between me and my opponent, but it’s very gratifying and I’m excited to be able to represent the people of Massachusetts in the United States Senate,” Markey said.
Markey visited Dempsey’s where he greeted voters at one of his favorite breakfast spots near his home in Malden. Medford state Rep. Paul Donato was there to meet him. Though he planned to return to Washington in afternoon to attend to House business, Markey said he did not think he would be sworn into the Senate until after the 4th of July.
His victory is less than a day old, but thoughts are already turning to the expected re-election effort the Democrat would have to mount next year, when voters will decide who will hold the Senate seat for a full six-year term.
Markey repeatedly declined opportunities during a 12-minute conversation with reporters to specify that he would seek re-election, instead saying he was focused now on working for the people of Massachusetts.
“The best way to convince people that you deserve to serve them from the state of Massachusetts is to go down and do the work to make sure you’re fighting for the things that their families care about,” he said.