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Race taking shape to succeed Eric Lesser in Massachusetts Senate

The Massachusetts Statehouse.
Jesse Costa
/
WBUR
The Massachusetts Statehouse.

A reshaped western Massachusetts Senate district set to open up this fall now figures to have a contested Democratic primary.

Sydney Levin-Epstein, a former Capitol Hill aide, announced Tuesday that she will mount a bid for the new Hampden, Hampshire and Worcester District in the Massachusetts Senate.

"The 413 needs an unwavering voice in Boston who will fight to get our fair share of state funding. As your State Senator, I will deliver for our communities to create more jobs, combat the opioid epidemic, and finally connect our commonwealth with West-East rail," Levin-Epstein said in a statement unveiling her campaign.

Levin-Epstein is poised to face off against Rep. Jake Oliveira of Ludlow, who announced last week that he plans to run for the seat Sen. Eric Lesser is vacating to run for lieutenant governor.

A Longmeadow Democrat, Levin-Epstein worked in the offices of Congressman Richard Neal and U.S. Sen. Ed Markey, where she said she focused on local transportation needs, foreign policy, and constituent communications.

She served as deputy finance director in Markey's 2020 reelection campaign and then on Sen. Jon Ossoff of Georgia's victorious Senate campaign. Today, Levin-Epstein works as director of strategic partnerships at GiveBlue, according to her LinkedIn page.

This fall's elections will be the first with new district lines in place following the decennial redistricting process, which shifted the Senate district currently represented by Lesser to include Palmer, Warren and South Hadley in addition to portions or all of Belchertown, Chicopee, East Longmeadow, Granby, Hampden, Longmeadow, Ludlow, Springfield, Warren and Wilbraham.

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