Baker Narrowly Avoids Contested GOP Primary For Governor

March 23, 2014 3:01 AM
Baker Narrowly Avoids Contested GOP Primary For Governor
" BOSTON (AP) — Delegates to the Republican state convention strongly backed Charlie Baker for their party’s gubernatorial nomination on Saturday, and conservative tea party member Mark Fisher just barely missed receiving enough support to force a contested GOP primary.

Mark Fisher. (WBZ-TV)

“It’s time for a new direction, one in which taxpayer’s interests are first and special interests are last,” Baker said in a speech to the roughly 2,500 delegates at Boston University’s Agganis Arena.

The former chief executive of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care was the party’s standard-bearer in 2010, losing to Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick in the general election. Patrick is not seeking a third term.

The GOP is hoping to make inroads in Massachusetts, where it currently holds no statewide offices, no seats in the state’s congressional delegation and is outnumbered about 5-to-1 in the Legislature.

“14.765 IS NOT 15 PERCENT”

Baker received 82 percent of the 2,500 delegates, while Fisher finished with just less than 14.8 percent, according to GOP Chairwoman Kirsten Hughes. Fisher needed 15 percent of the delegates to force a primary.

“14.765 is not 15 percent,” Hughes said when asked whether Fisher would be allowed on the ballot "

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