Morse will face O’Connell in Holyoke’s mayoral race

Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse (left) and businessman Francis O'Connell (right).

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse will try for a third term as the city’s mayor, and will be challenged in November by Francis O’Connell.

Morse received the most votes in Tuesday’s three-way preliminary mayoral election with 2,694 votes. O’Connell secured a place on the ballot by placing in second with 2,450 votes. Eliminated from the final ballot was Anthony Soto who finished in third place with 1,145.

Click here to see the latest election results.

Morse was elected mayor in 2011, defeating first-term incumbent Elaine Pluta. He was re-elected over challenger Jeffrey Stanek in 2013.

Crowds cheered for each of the candidates Tuesday night as they announced their victory. 22News asked each candidate what they hope to bring to the city of Holyoke if elected for mayor.

Morse said, “I think they can expect to see the same level of energy, passion, and commitment we’ve brought the city of Holyoke over the last 4 years. Holyoke is on the move, people here can see it and feel it.”

O’Connell said, “30% of the people in this town are living below the poverty level. That’s something that I want to change. That’s unacceptable. 7.9% unemployment rate. In the city of Holyoke. Wouldn’t you want to change that?”

Holyoke voter turnout was 25% for the preliminary election. Election Day is Tuesday, November 3.

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