David DeCoste Wins Another Close Race in South Shore State Rep Race

Printed from: https://newbostonpost.com/2020/11/05/david-decoste-wins-another-close-race/

Massachusetts state Representative Dave DeCoste (R-Norwell) is no stranger to pulling off wins in tight elections, and this year was no different.

The pro-life Republican fended off Hanover selectman and Democrat Emmanuel Dockter in the Fifth Plymouth District, which includes all of Rockland, Norwell, and Hanover. DeCoste won the race by a 385-vote margin. He received 13,131 votes to Dockter’s 12,746. That means DeCoste got 50.7 percent of the vote to his opponent’s 49.3 percent.

DeCoste declared victory at 9:29 p.m. on Tuesday night, knowing the election was going in his favor.

“We won!” he wrote in a Facebook post. “Thank you to my constituents in Hanover, Norwell and Rockland for entrusting me with another term as your State Representative.”

This wasn’t the first competitive race DeCoste, a military veteran, has run in for state representative.

When first elected in 2014, DeCoste won the general election over Democrat Rhonda Nyman by 49 votes (50.1 percent to 49.8 percent). Additionally, he beat former Rockland selectman Lou Valanzola — father of Plymouth County commissioner-elect Jared Valanzola — by 26 votes in the Republican primary that year. In 2016, DeCoste won the general election with 51 percent of the vote and in 2018, he received 51.7 percent.

Dockter put out a lengthy concession statement on Facebook on Wednesday morning, acknowledging the defeat:

It has been a long campaign and a long day yesterday. It was close, but the outcome is unfortunately not what we hoped for.
This has been a great experience for me. The best part by far has been sharing my background and learning that I am not unique. I have been private most of my life about my childhood. Growing up, I remember the feeling of shame when other kids found out that I was wearing donated clothes, that I was getting free school lunch, or that I lived in subsidized housing. This has been the drive of my life, to provide a better life for my children.
The first time I shared my childhood experience publicly was to a packed room when I was announcing my campaign. I remember it being difficult to get the words out without too much emotion. As I shared my childhood more often during the last year and a half, I started to hear similar stories back of poverty and single-parent homes. I learned that my experience is not that different from many of our neighbors, and certainly nothing to be ashamed about.
If nothing else, this has been a great gift that I will take from this campaign.
The downside of politics is that the goal of serving and bettering your community too often gets turned into a game with teams and winners and losers. It can be difficult at times to distinguish between political concession speeches and post-game interviews: “I want to thank our team, they worked hard, but unfortunately we came up short. I also want to congratulate the other team on their win.”
Throughout my campaign I have steadfastly held that the greatest challenge facing our Country is the divisiveness that is tearing us apart. Instead of friends or neighbors, we have come to identify first and foremost as members of teams.
I want to thank everyone who supported me and believed we could make a difference, so that more of our neighbors would be able to provide better lives for their children. I also want to thank those of my opponent’s supporters who were able to balance political advocacy while still showing kindness – this was not always the case; it can be difficult in the heat of passion.
I pray we are able to move on, to see each other as people instead of members of opposing teams. We certainly will need this over the coming years with the devastating pandemic and economic fallout. We must come together. We must choose kindness and compassion.