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WOONSOCKET â€” In a stunning upset, city firefighter Stephen M. Casey defeated incumbent State Rep. Jon D. Brien last night in the Democratic primary for District 50, the winnerâ€™s first political outing.
The unofficial tally at press time had Casey with 704 votes to Brienâ€™s 654. It was close but numerically too far a bridge for Brien to cross on absentee ballots, with just 48 distributed in the district, according to local canvassing authorities.
â€śIâ€™m not surprised,â€ť Casey told The Call during a victory celebration at Ciroâ€™s Restaurant, where he was surrounded by friends and family members. â€śWe worked hard. Weâ€™re in a climate that people are looking for new ideas and new people to help out at the State House.â€ť
Across town at Kayâ€™s Restaurant, Brien stared at a placard listing the poll numbers with an expression of grim disbelief.
Read more in our print edition.