“I swear I’m not a serial candidate,” Senator Lydia Edwards joked Monday night at her campaign kickoff for the 3rd Suffolk State Senate seat.
Edwards, who won the special election for the vacant state senate seat back in January, needs to run for reelection during the state’s primary and general elections this November.
Edwards’s joke poked fun at the fact that she ran and won her reelection to the Boston City Council in November during Boston’s municipal elections, then ran for senate in the winter during a special election and is now running again to keep her senate seat.
“Right now my district is the 1st Suffolk & Middlesex, which includes East Boston, Beacon Hill, the North End, Chinatown, parts of the South End, Winthrop, Revere and Cambridgeport,” said Edwards. “However, this seat has been redistricted into the 3rd Suffolk and I am already up for reelection.”
Edwards explained that the redistricted seat includes all the parts of the 1st Suffolk & Middlesex except for Cambridgeport. However, Edwards will pick up all of the Back Bay.
“So Back was included and Cambridgeport was excluded during redistricting,” she explained.
Edwards, who was sworn into the senate in January, has kept her city council seat but will officially resign on April 30th.
“I’ll be your full time state senator at that time,” Edwards told guests. “It’s coming right around budget time. So what that means for us and my district is we’re looking at all sorts of ways to have an equitable recovery (from the pandemic) by looking at how we see the economy differently in each of the cities and towns.”
Edwards said this includes looking to make the Suffolk Downs project an economic center for small businesses in Eastie and Revere; creating a vibrant economic center in Revere; building more affordable housing in Boston and balancing economic development with creating strong communities; and making Winthrop’s economic business center vibrant and sustainable.
“I will also be looking at how we can make transportation better and more equatable with a Blue-Red Line connector or a better and more affordable ferry service,” said Edwards. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to really talk about what we can do creatively with American Recovery Act funds and create infrastructure for the public good.”
Edwards added that she will continue to be an advocate for environmental justice communities in the senate.
“We need to be making sure that when we think about how we build and plan for our state and cities and towns, we have a centralized definition that includes language justice, that includes racial justice, that includes health impacts,” she said. “Our future is going to be green, so we need to begin that partnership with the green future of labor. I’m excited that Eastie Farms is opening a new greenhouse in East Boston. The first thing I did was invite my friends in labor because I want them to see this new green infrastructure. We invited the plumbers, who are wondering what their future is going to be. We invited the pipefitters union because we want to show them that a thermal greenhouse in East Boston is good permanent infrastructure built through union jobs. Our future is going to change and we need the skill sets to bring about that change.”
During the Zoom portion of Edwards’s kickoff she was joined by Assistant Speaker of the US House, Congresswoman Katherine Clark of Revere.
“I just wanted a chance to come by and talk about Senator Edwards,” said Clark. “First of all, I just moved into her district so I am thrilled not only that she’s in the State Senate, but then she’s my state senator. Lydia is so effective and such the right person for this time. She looks at issues you find partnership, and uses equity as her threadline. And that’s exactly what we need to tackle these huge issues in front of us whether it’s transportation, addressing climate change, making sure healthcare is accessible and housing is for all. Lydia is so passionate and informed and really uses that base for finding great partners, keeping her community involved and using her integrity and her incredible voice to move us forward. She’s really going to help us in the communities she serves, and in the Commonwealth as a whole, and will meet this time of historic challenge with historic progress.”
Clark added that her and Edwards are beginning to have some of their first events together as state senator and congresswoman.
“Lydia’s voice, whether it is out celebrating an investment in a new station to connect Revere to the Commuter Rail or the host of other projects that are coming that are about making sure that we are meeting this moment,” said Clark. “This is our moment to keep working, making sure that people are able to thrive and that every single person can see themselves in the economy and see a place for their family to grow and succeed.”
“That is what Livia does so naturally so I am just thrilled to be part of her delegation and thrilled to have her voice in the state senate for the communities that she serves.”