By Cary Shuman
Two of the state Democratic Party’s most popular public officials, Congressman Seth Moulton and Attorney General Maura Healey, announced their strong support for Kevin Coppinger in his bid for the Essex County Sheriff’s position at a breakfast fundraiser Monday at the Boston Marriott Peabody Hotel.
The program began with Richard Coppinger introducing the many area officials in attendance including Georgetown Selectman C. David Surface, president and CEO of St. Jean’s Credit Union, Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett, Lynn City Council President Dan Cahill, Councillor-at-Large Brian LaPierre, Essex County Register of Probate Pamela Casey O’Brien, and Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll.
Moulton, who celebrated his 38th birthday Monday, told the gathering, “It’s an honor to be here in support of a fantastic candidate for Sheriff.”
The congressman for the Sixth District said that Coppinger has been an effective partner in the continuing fight against the opioid crisis in Massachusetts.
“We need leadership that’s willing to tackle this crisis, that’s willing to recognize that it’s not just a law enforcement crisis, it’s healthcare crisis – and Kevin Coppinger’s leadership in Lynn is exemplary of the leadership that he will provide as our sheriff.
“We need a leader in that position who understands what the fight is like every single day,” said Moulton. “Kevin, your leadership on the streets of Lynn bodes well for the leadership that you can provide as our sheriff and that means an awful lot.”
Healey praised Coppinger’s work with the Attorney General’s office on key issues facing Lynn and the state.
“I am so proud to know Kevin Coppinger and do everything I can to ensure that he will be your next sheriff in Essex County,” said Healey. “Kevin was always so helpful to me [in the Attorney General’s Office] and understanding what was happening on the ground on so many different fronts in Lynn. Nobody brings more experience to this job than Kevin Coppinger. Nobody brings more experience in thinking about our criminal justice system and what we need to do within our criminal justice system for the betterment of communities.”
Healey added that “no one has been more committed to the opioid crisis than Kevin Coppinger.”
The attorney general said that Coppinger will work hard to expand the reentry program for prisoners. “He is looking to expand and continue efforts on reentry and reintegration, getting folks the kind of services they need that will make them better situated and make us all better situated. I am really proud to have served and worked alongside you and I know that as our next sheriff in Essex County you’re going to continue to do great things for all of us.”
Coppinger thanked Moulton and Healey for their support.
“The caliber of their talent and what they’ve done for our state and our region has been incredible,” said Coppinger. “Thank you so much for coming out here today and thank you for your support.”
Addressing his many supporters, Coppinger said, “It’s an honor to be the Democratic nominee for the office of Essex County Sheriff. It was a tough race in the primary and I had great opponents. Mike Marks is here today and he ran a great campaign.”
Noting his rigorous campaign of running for office in a large county of 750,000 residents, Coppinger jested, “I think [the election] is 15 days and 16 hours away but who’s counting. I have three opponents and I’m taking nothing for granted. They’re tough opponents. I’m going to continue to push and push and push right up until 8 o’clock on Nov. 8 and keep the fingers crossed and hope those votes come in my favor and I can do that with your support.”
Coppinger won the Democratic nomination for the seat in the Sept. 8 primary. He is a candidate in the Nov. general election along with Republican nominee Anne Manning-Martin, and Independent candidates Mark Archer and Kevin Leach.