Mass. Senate seat

With the U.S. Senate’s vote to confirm John Kerry as secretary of state, Massachusetts voters are locked into another fast and furious election campaign.

The echoes of applause and congratulations had barely died down Wednesday when Gov. Deval Patrick’s choice to represent the commonwealth in the interim was made public. William “Mo” Cowan, an attorney and the governor’s former chief of staff, will fill the vacancy until shortly after June 25, when Massachusetts voters will go to the polls to elect a replacement.

“He has been a valued ally to me and our work on behalf of the people of the commonwealth,” Patrick said at a news conference announcing his pick. “In every step, he has brought preparation, perspective, wisdom, sound judgment and clarity of purpose.”

While the governor could have selected any number of more high-profile men or women for the job — including just-retired U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, who lobbied the governor for the appointment — he chose someone not as well-known publicly but an individual he trusts to serve the state well for a short period.

Cowan said Wednesday he’s not planning to be a candidate in the future, leaving others to scramble to create their candidacies. Before the state gets to this special election, there could be a primary race slated for April 30. Right now, only one candidate, Democrat and U.S. Rep. Edward Markey of Malden, has formally announced his intentions to run for the Senate, while Markey’s colleague from the Massachusetts congressional delegation, Rep. Stephen Lynch of South Boston, is talking about running as well.

As for the Republicans, former U.S. Sen. Scott Brown, who just lost his seat to Elizabeth Warren in November, is said to be mulling jumping into this race.

Over the next couple of days Massachusetts citizens should get a much clearer picture as to what to expect in the coming months. But we hope that whoever decides to run doesn’t make this Boston-centric election. Anyone thinking of running should remember that they’ll be representing the interests of western and central Massachusetts as well as the eastern part of the state.

Residents in our region of the state would appreciate the face time.

As for Cowan, we realize his time may be spoken for, but a visit to western Massachusetts would be welcome as well.

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