The special election for the vacant New Bedford City Council seat in ward three is going to be a battle among at least five political heavy weights and their supporters.

The war for the seat recently vacated by Henry Bousquet broke out this past Friday when five veteran political operatives pulled nomination papers for the special election. That so many people took papers nearly guarantees there will be a preliminary election to willow the field down to two who will then face off in the late April final election.

I will be discussing this exciting race on 1420 WBSM during my show "Sunday Brunch" from 10am to 1pm tomorrow.

Special elections tend to be low turnout affairs and the candidate with the best organization and ability to get their supporters to the polls wins. All five of the candidates listed below have the ability and experience to build, fund and direct a solid political organization.

The Candidates:

Kathy Dehner: She is a former councilor from ward 3 and therefore is an automatic front runner as she is the only one in this crowed field to have done what they all want to do - win the ward 3 seat.

Hugh Dunn: He is a former staffer in Congressman Keating's New Bedford office. A graduate of the UMass Law School in Dartmouth and currently the Executive Director of Economic Development and Director of the SouthCoast Development Partnerships at UMass Dartmouth.

Lisa Lemieux: She is an organizer with Service Employees International Union and an active member of the Coalition for Social Justice. She is also a member of the Greater New Bedford Workforce Investment Board.

Jill Ussach: She is a former elected member of the New Bedford School Committee and currently represents New Bedford on the Massachusetts Republican State Committee. She currently works for Sheriff Thomas Hodgson and is a political ally of Gov. Charlie Baker.

Mark Zajac: He is former former Ward 6 city councilor and a practicing attorney.

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