1982 Massachusetts general election

A Massachusetts general election was held on November 2, 1982 in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

The election included:

Democratic and Republican candidates were selected in party primaries held September 14, 1982.

Statewide elections[edit]

United States Senator[edit]

Democratic incumbent Ted Kennedy was re-elected over Republican Ray Shamie and Libertarian Howard S. Katz.

Governor & Lieutenant Governor[edit]

Democrats Michael Dukakis and John Kerry were elected Governor and Lieutenant Governor, respectively, over Republican candidates John W. Sears and Leon Lombardi.

Attorney General[edit]

Democrat Francis X. Belotti was elected Attorney General. He defeated Republican Richard L. Wainwright and Libertarian Michael Reilly in the general election.

Massachusetts Attorney General Election, 1982[1]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Francis X. Belotti 1,555,400 78.25%
Republican Richard L. Wainwright 375,557 18.89%
Libertarian Michael Reilly 56,835 2.86%
Write-in 36 0.00%

Secretary of the Commonwealth[edit]

Incumbent Secretary of the Commonwealth Michael J. Connolly defeated Republican Jody DeRoma Dow and Libertarian Robin D. Zazula in the general election.

Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth Election, 1982[2]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Michael J. Connolly 1,368,314 72.62%
Republican Jody DeRoma Dow 455,975 24.20%
Libertarian Robin D. Zazula 60,003 3.18%
Write-in 43 0.00%

Treasurer and Receiver-General[edit]

Incumbent Treasurer and Receiver-General Robert Q. Crane defeated Barnstable County Treasurer Mary J. LeClair and Libertarian Freda L. Nason in the general election.

Massachusetts Treasurer and Receiver-General Election, 1982[3]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Robert Q. Crane 1,338,150 70.42%
Republican Mary J. LeClair 506,200 26.64%
Libertarian Freda L. Nason 55,763 2.93%
Write-in 57 0.03%


Incumbent Auditor John J. Finnegan defeated Republican Michael S. Robertson and Libertarian Donald E. Washburn in the general election.

Massachusetts Auditor General Election, 1982[4]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic John J. Finnegan 1,225,427 66.94%
Republican Michael S. Robertson 535,463 29.25%
Libertarian Donald E. Washburn 69,795 3.81%
Write-in 31 0.00%

Ballot questions[edit]

Question 1[edit]

Proposed Amendment to the Constitution - The proposed constitutional amendment would remove the constitutional prohibition against the use of public funds to aid or maintain private primary or secondary schools.[5]

Proposed Legislative Amendment to the Constitution[6]
Candidate Votes % ±
Yes 708,034 37.90%
No 1,160,130 62.10%

Question 2[edit]

Proposed Amendment to the Constitution - The proposed constitutional amendment would allow the legislature to enact laws authorizing the state courts to impose the death penalty on the conviction of crimes to be specified by the law.[7]

Proposed Legislative Amendment to the Constitution[8]
Candidate Votes % ±
Yes 1,131,668 60.02%
No 748,549 39.98%

Question 3[edit]

Law Proposed by Initiative Petition - would require that before the construction or operation of any nuclear power plant or low-level radioactive waste storage or disposal facility in the Commonwealth, the legislature must make certain findings and a majority of voters must approve the facility at a statewide election.[9]

Law Proposed by Initiative Petition[10]
Candidate Votes % ±
Yes 1,249,462 67.45%
No 602,955 32.55%

Question 4[edit]

Referendum on an Existing Law - The law requires that a refundable deposit be paid for certain beverage containers sold in Massachusetts.[11]

Referendum on an Existing Law[12]
Candidate Votes % ±
Yes 1,143,955 59.10%
No 791,846 40.90%