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Jamaica Plain voters heavily favor Obama, Warren

Posted by Matt Rocheleau  November 7, 2012 02:06 PM

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Jamaica Plain voters overwhelmingly chose to reelect Democrat Barack Obama as President Tuesday and to send Democrat Elizabeth Warren to the US Senate.

Just under 70 percent of the neighborhood’s 27,605 registered voters cast ballots, according to preliminary results the Globe compiled from raw tallies provided by Boston election officials.

Obama received about 88 percent of the vote in JP compared to about 8.5 percent for Republican challenger Mitt Romney, the data shows.

Warren received about 87 percent of the neighborhood’s vote compared to about 12.5 percent for Republican incumbent US Senator Scott Brown, according to the unofficial results.

Citywide, voter turnout was about 64 percent, with nearly 79 percent of voters choosing Obama and about 19 percent selecting Romney. About 74 percent of Boston voters opted for Warren, compared to about 26 percent who backed Brown.

Early Tuesday afternoon, there were no lines at Jamaica Plain’s English High School but poll workers said turnout had been steady since the polls opened.

J. Curtis Jones, 69, said he voted his values by throwing his support behind Obama once again. Jones, who is semi-retired and lives on Forest Hills Street, said he was so concerned about the bad economy in 2008 that he withdrew all the money he had in the bank in preparation for a catastrophic failure of the economic system.

“When I realized the magnitude of the collapse, I said to myself, ‘Well, we’re going over,” Jones said.

Jones said he believes Obama’s actions prevented the catastrophe he feared, one that included bread lines and unemployment of 25 percent to 30 percent. Jones said he considers it ridiculous that some have criticized Obama for not accomplishing more in four years.

“He saved the … world,” Jones said, using an expletive. “Do people not understand that we dodged a bullet? … Fifty years from now, he’s going to go down as a significant president.”

Outside the Curley K-8 School in Jamaica Plain, neighborhood resident John W. Harrington, 66, proudly wore a New England Patriots hat that had two "I Voted" stickers placed on its brim -- one sticker from the primary elections in September and one from Tuesday.

He smiled and called his cap, "patriotic all around."

"I don't miss any elections," said Harrington, an operations analyst for Wells Fargo in Boston.

Harrington, a registered Democrat, said he voted for Obama.

"All Republicans: they're negative," he said. "They're against anything progressive."

Referring specifically to Romney, the state's former governor, Harrington said: "Fooled us once. He can't fool us again."

"The half ideas that Romney has been espousing are half ideas, they're half baked," he said. "He's a chameleon. He changes with the weather."

Harrington said he voted yes on all three ballot questions and voted for Elizabeth Warren, too.

"I like her. I like all of the issues she stands for," he said. "Brown is a good guy to a point. But, he does carry the party line."

Johanna Mendillo, 34, a registered Democrat from Jamaica Plain said she voted for Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts' US Senate race.

"I'm very impressed with her work at Harvard [University]," she said. "I believe she's run a very classy campaign and has stuck to the issues and a focus on the middle class."

"She has a tremendous amount of support in government on both sides of the aisle," Mendillo added. "I'm very angry at the tenor of Brown's campaign."

She said she voted for Obama for president.

"I think President Obama came in under enormously difficult circumstances and he's done a tremendous job considering what he was dealt," said Mendillo, a Boston Public School teacher at the John D. O'Bryant School of Math & Science in Roxbury. "I think he's a fair and eloquent and thoughtful leader."

She said she was proud to vote.

"I vote in every election," she said. "Women have voted for less than 100 years, which is crazy to think about in 2012."

"It's the beauty of democracy at work," she added. "The rest of the world drools over this opportunity at times."

E-mail Matt Rocheleau at mjrochele@gmail.com. E-mail Jeremy C. Fox at jeremycfox@gmail.com.
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