, Newburyport, MA

Local News

March 21, 2014

Pols ponder House seat

Port, Amesbury councilors consider race to succeed Costello


”I have not made up my mind, but I am talking to my family about it, my wife,” he said. “I will make a decision, I’m sure, in the near future if I am going to do it. But it does interest me.”

In Newburyport, Mayor Donna Holaday said she wouldn’t run, as did former councilor and mayoral candidate Dick Sullivan Jr.

Councilors Barry Connell, Ed Cameron and Ari Herzog aren’t ruling out the possibility.

Cameron, a veteran member of the council who heads the Democratic Committee in Newburyport, said he’s considering a run, but he will take a few weeks to make a final decision.

“I think I would be an effective voice for Amesbury, Newburyport, and Salisbury citizens, but I also want to be sure this would be a good choice for me and my family before I take the plunge,” Cameron said.

Herzog also said he is interested, and has been consulting with colleagues. He said he will make a decision by Monday.

Connell didn’t sound optimistic about a run, but said he would think about it.

“The news of Mike Costello’s leaving was such a shot in the dark that I haven’t given it any thought,” Connell said. “And I haven’t spoken to my wife about it.”

Connell, a top vote-getter when he runs for the at-large position of city councilor, has experience on Beacon Hill. He was chief of staff for Rep. Barbara Hildt, D-Amesbury, throughout the ’80s. In 1992, after Hildt gave up the post, Connell ran for state representative but lost to Frank Cousins (53 percent to 46 percent).

Former City Councilor Greg Earls, who was defeated for mayor last fall, said he was a “bit surprised” to hear the news, and added that he has “not ruled out anything at this very early point.”

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