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Kate Farrar Wins 20th State House District Democratic Race, Mary Fay Wins 1st Congressional District Republican Contest

Kate Farrar. Courtesy photo

While results are still unofficial, the winners are clear in several local primaries, with challenger Kate Farrar taking the 20th House District race and endorsed candidate and West Hartford resident Mary Fay securing her spot on the November ballot for the 1st Congressional District.

By Melanie Grados 

Mary Fay, who was endorsed by 1st Congressional District Republicans, beat her challenger in Tuesday’s primary. Submitted photo (we-ha.com file photo)

After an unusual election day in West Hartford where more votes were cast by mail than in-person, unofficial results from the Connecticut Secretary of State’s website are definitive enough to secure Republican Mary Fay of West Hartford a spot on the ticket in November where she will face long-time incumbent Democrat John Larson (D) in the U.S. House of Representative race for Connecticut’s 1st Congressional District, and results also indicate a resounding victory for Democrat Kate Farrar in the state House race for the 20th District. 

Farrar, who collected more than 450 signatures from 20th District Democrats in May to secure a place on the Democratic primary ballot, earned 2,114 votes, an overall 72% voter percentage from West Hartford districts 4, 5, and 6, according to the Connecticut Secretary of State’s website. Sherry Haller, the endorsed candidate, received 822 votes (28%).

“I am especially honored to have won such broad support in every part of the district. Campaigning during COVID-19 presents new and unique challenges, but now more than ever we need to be connected as a community. It’s why I worked so hard knocking on doors, making calls, and reaching out to voters every way possible. I look forward to running with fellow West Hartford Democrats to win in November,” Farrar said in a statement Thursday night.

Farrar is currently unopposed in the Nov. 3, 2020 election to take over the 20th District seat held by Democrat Joe Verrengia, who decided not to seek re-election.

Republicans endorsed Alberto Cortes in the 20th District, but he moved out of the district and there is not currently a Republican on the ticket.

Fay, who was endorsed by Republicans in the 1st Congressional District, earned 67.05% votes from all nine districts across West Hartford, and overall beat challenger Jim Griffin resoundingly,  8,137 (57.6%) to 5,990 (42.4%) based on unofficial results shown on the secretary of state’s website.

Absentee ballots, which represent a significant number of the votes cast in this election, have been included in the tallies for both races.

“Thank you to West Hartford and my hometown of East Hartford, and all of the towns in Connecticut’s 1st Congressional district for voting for me in Tuesday’s primary,” Fay said in a statement to We-Ha.com Thursday night.

“With 59% of the vote with nearly all precincts reporting, I declared victory yesterday. It’s an honor to be the Republican nominee, and to be in the position to run for Congress. I’m humbled by the faith and trust you have put in me. Just 100 years ago, women got the right to vote, and now we are running for Congress. Thank you to my family and friends, and especially to my all women campaign team, ‘the Purple Crew.’ It’s time for change in Congress, and I’m ready to lead, and pave the way for more women to enter the government arena. I look forward to hitting the campaign trail for the general election,” Fay said.

“I’m fiercely independent and looking forward to rebuilding Connecticut and this country, community by community. It take a village,” said Fay.

The Democratic Presidential Preference Primary results in West Hartford show 85.41% votes for Joe Biden, 12.16% for Bernie Sanders, 1.01% for Tulsi Gabbard, and 1.42% uncommitted. 

West Hartford results in the Republican Presidential Preference Primary indicate 65.74% voted for Donald Trump, 10.87% for Roque “Rocky” de la Fuente, and 23.38% uncommitted. 

According to Democratic Registrar of Voters Patrice Peterson, over 350 ballots were processed Thursday. 

Town Clerk Essie Labrot said that more than 7,000 absentee ballots – 6,316 Democrats and 715 Republicans – were received by the time the polls closed Tuesday. There were 10,900 ballots in total sent out, and she expected additional valid ballots to arrive via the U.S. Postal Service on Wednesday and Thursday.

On the heels of the significant power outage following Tropical Storm Isaias, Gov. Ned Lamont signed an executive order late Monday afternoon that says if a ballot was postmarked Aug. 11 and delivered by Aug. 13 it would still count in Tuesday’s primary.

The official results will be certified Monday, Aug. 17 at 10:30 a.m. The results will take a few hours to publish, Peterson said.

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About the author

Melanie Grados

1 Comment

  • To my knowledge, no challenger has ever beaten a party-endorsed candidate by such a large margin. Kate Farrar’s overwhelming 72% of the vote speaks volumes.

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