While the final tally for the city’s unofficial election results wasn’t available on the morning of Wednesday, Nov. 3, Boston voters overwhelmingly supported Democrat Joe Biden over Presidential Donald Trump on the road to the White House.
Nearly 83 percent of voters citywide cast a total of 225,368 ballots for the Democrat ticket of Biden and Vice President-hopeful Kamala Harris while President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence trailed with almost 16 percent of the ballot, or 42,707 votes cast.
Statewide, Biden garnered the support of nearly 66 percent of voters to best Trump, who trailed with around 33 percent.
State Rep. Jay Livingstone said Wednesday morning, “It wasn’t surprising that Boston voted overwhelmingly to elect Vice President Biden to be the next President. I think Donald Trump has been incredibly unpopular with voters in Boston and Massachusetts, and the results yesterday bore that out.”
But Rep Livingstone added, “I just wish the rest of the country had agreed with us, and that their results were as definitive as Boston’s and Massachusetts were for Vice President Biden.”
Likewise, City Councilor Kenize Bok wrote Wednesday: “It’s been hard to govern at the local level without a strong federal partner helping us handle this pandemic, and I think what you see from Bostonians is a clear rejection of the incompetence, bias, and cruelty we’ve seen coming out of the Trump Administration. I’m proud that Boston voted so decisively for Joe Biden, and I hope Pennsylvania — where I was knocking doors for the final four days — and with it the country follow suit to make Biden president.”
Sharon Durkan, chair of the Boston Ward 5 Democratic Committee wrote, “As expected, Massachusetts went solidly for Joe Biden! We have been waiting for this race for four years, so taking time to count every vote doesn’t phase us, and we are committed to every vote being counted. We are particularly proud of the win in New Hampshire and Maine given our proximity and political interconnectedness.”
On Question 1, which allows car owners to access and share vehicle data with independent repair shops, nearly 75 percent of Boston voters cast a total 190,429 ballots to support it in contrast to the approximately 25 percent of the city’s voters cast who cast 63,872 ballots in opposition.
Similarly, 75 percent of voters statewide voted “yes” on Question 1 while 25 percent opposed it.
“There were a lot of privacy concerns and questions about the ability to implement the law as written, and like any other law, that can be tweaked by the legislation,” Rep. Livingstone said, “but the voters made it clear they want to be able to repair their cars everywhere and the legislature needs to respect that.”
Ballot Question 2 – a binding referendum that enacts ranked-choice voting in primary and general elections – was supported by nearly 62 percent of the city’s voters (155,123 ballots cast) while around 38 percent (96,264 ballots cast) rejected it.
Ultimately, around 55 percent of voters statewide rejected Question 2 as opposed to the approximately 45 percent of voters who supported it.
“My district and the voters I represent in Boston and Cambridge where you’ve had multiple-candidate races where several of the candidates looked very much the same, like the DA’s race from two years ago, overwhelmingly supported [Question 2],” Rep. Livingstone said. “Unfortunately, a lot of the state didn’t have the same experience with ranked-choice voting.”
Councilor Bok wrote: “I’m disappointed that Question 2 lost — I think it would have allowed for a better reflection of voter preferences, and I think the fact that organizers didn’t get the opportunity to explain ranked-choice voting to people face to face, because of the pandemic, really hurt its chances of success.”
More optimistically, Durkan wrote, “I applaud the organizers of RCV (ranked-choice voting). Our committee supported the ballot initiative. We know that organizing and educating voters on this issue takes time. We believe that RCV would help establish more consensus and a more representative government. Our committee believes in the merits of this, and hope this is start of momentum on this issue.”
Although the final tally was unavailable at the time of publication, Mayor Martin Walsh said Tuesday historic voter turnout in Boston was expected in the election – a milestone that can likely be attributed in part to early and mail-in voting in the election.
City Councilor Bok wrote, “I’m proud of everything the Boston Elections Department did to expand ballot access, with dropboxes and early vote sites, and I think it’s critical that across the country we ensure every vote is counted.”