In Roundtable, A Different Tack On Pipeline For Dems Vying To Face Humason

Democrats vying for a state Senate seat in Hampden and Hampshire Counties do not see eye-to-eye on the proposed natural gas pipeline through northern Massachusetts.

MORE: New England Public Radio’s voter guide for primary elections in western and central Massachusetts and northern Connecticut

Chris Hopewell and Patrick Leahy disagree on very little. So they spent much of a candidate roundtable emphasizing their resumes: Hopewell, as an Army veteran and a hospital emergency medical services coordinator and Leahy as a police officer in Holyoke.

But there were differences on the proposed Kinder-Morgan pipeline. Hopewell was a firm no.

“Certainly, making a conscious decision to invest in the [fossil fuel] infrastructure…we’re going in [the] opposite [direction] to where we need to be for our future and decreasing our dependence on fossil fuels,” Hopewell said.

Leahy, raised some concerns, but would not say if he’s for or against it right now.

“I want to learn more about their specific plan,” he said. “I want to know about the gas line, I want to know about the volume of it, the size of it, where it’s going to go specifically.”

As of now, it would not go through this Senate district, staying farther north in Massachusetts.

The winner of this primary will face Republican Don Humason, who won a special election for the seat last November.

Candidate roundtables are part of a collaboration between The Republican newspaper, MassLive, CBS3 and New England Public Radio.