From Sentinel and Enterprise
By Nick Mallard
FITCHBURG -- Both Democrats and Republicans made their voices heard Sunday as U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren made a stop in Fitchburg to stump for Sue Chalifoux Zephir, a Democrat running for state Senate in the Worcester and Middlesex district.
While supporters gathered inside Slattery's on Sunday morning to hear Warren and Chalifoux Zephir speak, an equally large number of people stood on the sidewalks outside with signs supporting Republican candidate Dean Tran.
Inside the restaurant, though, Warren spoke of values and partnership, endorsing Chalifoux Zephir in the Dec. 5 election to fill the seat vacated by Jennifer Flanagan.
"I'm so glad to be here this morning with Sue because these races are powerfully important," Warren told the 100-plus in attendance.
"Everything we do in government is about our values and it means a lot to have great partners so we're fighting in the same direction."Warren pointed to the state's part in helping defend the right to health care, noting that "we got out there and fought." She also called for the nation to invest in education and build a solid infrastructure.
"I believe we need to be making better investments at the federal level, but we will only do that if we have state legislators who are good partners," Warren said. "That's why I want Sue in the state Senate. This is about our values. Right now, the view of the Republicans is to make an America that works better and better for a thinner and thinner slice at the top and leave everyone else behind. "
Chalifoux Zephir said she was "honored and humbled" by the endorsement and kind words from Warren before speaking briefly to the gathered masses, thanking them for their support.
"The Worcester-Middlesex district is 11 cities and towns," Chalifoux Zephir said. "It's huge. We need to get out and knock on doors. I need every one of you to help out.
"We need to keep this seat Democratic."
Senator Warren echoed Chalifoux Zephir's call to action.
"We need more than people coming out and saying they will vote," Warren said. "We need people who will help. We need people who will hold signs, we need people who will knock on doors, we need people to answer phones. We need to get everyone organized.
"We're energized and we know how important every one of these races is. It makes a difference."
Fitchburg mayor Stephen DiNatale introduced a lengthy list of area politicians on hand to support Chalifoux Zephir, including state Representatives Natalie Higgins, Jen Benson and Harold Naughton, city councilors and School Committee members.
"There's no one who will be more effective than Sue Chalifoux Zephir and I'll tell you why. She believes in collaboration and partnership. That's what gets things done," DiNatale said.