Voters face big choices on Nov. 4 ballot

Democrat Martha Coakley and Republican Charlie Baker are fighting it out in a close gubernatorial race, while three other candidates trail far behind in the weeks leading up to the Nov. 4 general election.

Meanwhile, in the only competitive local election, Democrat  state Sen. Sonia Chang-Díaz (2nd Suffolk District) will face Republican David James Wyatt, a regular candidate who had a failed mayoral bid in 2013.

Democrat state Reps. Jeffrey Sánchez (15th Suffolk District), Russell Holmes (6th Suffolk District) and Liz Malia (11th Suffolk District) do not have any challengers in the general.

In the Governor’s Office race, Coakley, who is the state Attorney General, has been trading leads in recent polls with Baker, who is trying to bounce back from his loss to Deval Patrick in the 2010 gubernatorial race. Coakley and Baker are far ahead in polls of three challengers: Evan Falchuk of the United Independent Party), and independent candidates Jeff McCormick and Scott Lively.

In the race to replace Coakley as the state attorney general, former state Assistant Attorney General Maura Healey faces Republican John Miller.

Former Brookline Selectman Deborah Goldberg battles Republican Michael James Heffernan and Green-Rainbow candidate Ian Jackson for state treasurer.

Meanwhile, state Secretary of State William Galvin has two challengers in his reelection fight: Republican David D’Arcangelo and Green-Rainbow candidate Daniel Factor.

Former Boston City Councilor Felix D. Arroyo, who came out of a thick field of several candidates to earn the Democratic nomination for Suffolk County register of probate office, faces no challengers for that office in the general election.

Felix D. Arroyo is well-known locally as the father of Felix G. Arroyo, a JP resident and the City of Boston’s chief of Health and Human Services.

In the race for the sheriff of Suffolk County, current officeholder and Democrat Steven Tompkins faces independent Hassan Smith in the general election. The winner will serve out the remaining term left by Jamaica Plain resident Andrea Cabral, who was appointed to the state secretary of public safety. The next full-term sheriff election will be in 2016.

A guide to ballot questions

There are also four ballot questions that Jamaica Plain voters will help to decide:

  • Question 1 is about eliminating the requirement that the state gas tax be adjusted annually to inflation. A yes vote would repeal that requirement, while a no vote would keep it.
  • Question 2 is about expanding the state’s beverage container deposit law to cover non-alcoholic, non-carbonated drinks with some exceptions. A yes vote would expand the coverage, while a no vote would keep the law the same.
  • Question 3 is about repealing the state casino law. A yes vote would outlaw casinos in the state, while a no vote would allow them.

Question 4 is about earned sick time. A yes vote would entitle employees to earned sick time under certain conditions, while a no vote would make no changes in the current law.

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