Dems Hardy and Bray Win Big in Vermont Senate

By SARAH ASCH

AMELIA POLLARD

Democratic candidate Ruth Hardy was elected to represent Addison County in the state senate, and fellow Democrat Chris Bray was re-elected to a third term. At a victory party for the local Democrats at the Middlebury Inn, Hardy said she feels honored that Addison County residents trusted her to represent them.

“I’m really excited to get to work on their behalf and to learn a lot,” she said. “I’m proud of all the people who worked with me to make this victory happen.”

Bray said that despite having served in the state senate since 2012 and in the house from 2006 to 2010, he had never faced such a competitive field before. “It makes you wonder what people think about the work we’re doing,” he said. “To have such a strong vote affirms that I am on the right track and the county is on the right track.”

Bray said he is excited to work with Hardy in Montpelier. “We’ve been great partners throughout the election,” he said. “We’re two independent-minded people with our own skill sets our own backgrounds. My partner in the senate has been Claire Ayer and I was really hopeful that we would maintain a gender balance in this county.”

We’ve been great partners throughout the election.”

— Chris Bray

Hardy said that among the first projects she wants to tackle at the statehouse is affordable childcare and paid family leave. “That’s something that hasn’t been worked on enough in the legislature,” she said. “It’s really important to me as a mom that we take care of families with young children.” She also mentioned the need to move the ball forward on universal primary care as a crucial early step, alongside keeping Vermont education strong and providing programs for seniors.

Bray echoed many of Hardy’s priorities. “If we want people to be able to enter the workforce securely, there has to be affordable abundant child care available,” he said, adding that he believes universal primary care is the most cost-effective option. He also mentioned his intention to continue past work on his Farm to Plate initiative. Other pillars of his political repertoire include clean energy and water bills.AMELIA POLLARD

In their remarks to the crowd, both candidates doled out a long list of thank yous, including to the Addison County Democratic Party and the college students who were involved in the campaign process. At the end of her speech, Hardy highlighted the four key elements of her platform: healthcare, access to child care for families with young children, strong local schools and services for seniors.

“We’re going to do it all,” she said.

Editor’s Note: Ruth Hardy is the spouse of Prof. Jason Mittell, The Campus’ academic advisor. Mittell plays no role in any editorial decisions made by the paper. Any questions may be directed to campus@middlebury.edu.

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