Boston Marathon Explosions Put Senate Race, Partisan Politics On Hold
As is generally the case when tragedy strikes, the Boston Marathon explosions have put partisan politics on hold.
“This is a horrific day in Boston,” Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick said in a statement issued following the incident. “My thoughts and prayers are with those who have been injured. I have been in touch with the President, Mayor Menino and our public safety leaders. Our focus is on making sure that the area around Copley Square is safe and secured. I am asking everyone to stay away from Copley Square and let the first responders do their jobs.”
President Barack Obama called Patrick and Boston Mayor Tom Menino following the explosions. He later entered the White House press room to issue a statement.
“There are no Republicans and Democrats, we are Americans united in support of our fellow citizens,” President Obama said.
Candidates running for Senate in Massachusetts all suspended their campaigns following the news of the Boston Marathon explosions.
Democratic Representative Ed Markey is the frontrunner in the race to replace the seat opened when Secretary of State John Kerry stepped into his new role. He announced that he would stop all canvassing, phone banking, fundraising, and television ads during this time.
Gabriel Gomez, a Republican candidate in the upcoming election, was a participant in the marathon. He finished before the explosions occurred and was unharmed.
Michael Sullivan and State Representative Dan Winslow, other Republican candidates in the Massachusetts Senate race, have also suspended all campaign activities.
“Any responsible individuals, responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice,” Obama said.
The US Senate held a moment of silence for the victims of the Boston Marathon explosions and the city as a whole in the hour preceding Obama’s statement.
Democratic Representative Stephen Lynch announced his intention to suspend campaign activities via Twitter.
In light of today’s events, we are suspending all campaign activity. We encourage all our supporters to spend time with their loved ones.
— Stephen F. Lynch (@lynchforsenate) April 15, 2013
Other politicians have rushed to Twitter to comment on the explosions in Boston.
Our prayers are with those injured and the first responders at the Boston Marathon.
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) April 15, 2013
Senator Mitch McConnell tweeted appreciation for the Boston first responders and volunteers hours after criticizing the Obama budget plan, reflecting the pause in partisan attacks.
Prayers for the people of Boston runners/spectators at the marathon. Thanks to the first responders and volunteers on the scene now. — Sen. McConnell Press (@McConnellPress) April 15, 2013
Representative Nancy Pelosi also tweeted out her thoughts and prayers to those affected.
Thoughts and prayers are with the people of Boston and the first responders helping the victims of this terrible tragedy. #PrayforBoston
— Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) April 15, 2013
The White House tweeted out a statement from the president’s address.
President Obama: “Boston is a tough and resilient town. So are its people.”
— The White House (@whitehouse) April 15, 2013
This is one of the rare moments when all of Washington can agree with the president. Details surrounding the Boston Marathon explosions are still scarce, and the country awaits information on who perpetrated the attack. The Massachusetts race to fill Kerry’s Senate seat will end on election day, April 30.