Massachusetts gubernatorial election, 1982

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Massachusetts gubernatorial election, 1982
← 1978 November 2, 1982 1986 →
  Governor Dukakis speaks at the 1976 Democratic National Convention (cropped).jpg
Nominee Michael Dukakis John W. Sears
Party Democratic Republican
Running mate John Kerry Leon Lombardi
Popular vote 1,219,109 749,679
Percentage 59.48% 36.57%

1982 MA Governor.png
Results by town. Red indicates towns carried by John W. Sears, blue indicates towns carried by Michael Dukakis.

Governor before election

Edward J. King

Elected Governor

Michael Dukakis

The 1982 Massachusetts gubernatorial election was held on November 2, 1982. Michael Dukakis was elected to a second non-consecutive term. He beat Republican John W. Sears in the General election, after defeating Incumbent Governor Edward J. King in the Democratic primary.



Former Governor Michael Dukakis challenged incumbent Governor Edward J. King in a rematch of the 1978 Democratic primary. This time Dukakis was victorious, defeating King 53–47%.

Former Suffolk County sheriff and Boston city councilman John Winthrop Sears defeated businessman John Lakian and State Representative Andrew Card for the Republican nomination.[1]

Lt. Governor[edit]

Incumbent Lt. Governor Thomas P. O'Neill III did not run for re-election. Former Navy Lieutenant and anti-war activist John Kerry won a five way contest for the Democratic nomination. State Representative Leon Lombardi was the Republican nominee.


Democratic primaries[edit]

1982 Massachusetts Democratic gubernatorial primary
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Michael Dukakis 631,911 53.49%
Democratic Edward J. King 549,335 46.50%
Majority 82,576 6.99%
1982 Massachusetts Democratic Lt. gubernatorial primary
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic John Kerry 325,890 29.00%
Democratic Evelyn Murphy 286,378 25.48%
Democratic Samuel Rotondi 228,086 20.29%
Democratic Lou Nickinello 150,829 13.42%
Democratic Lois Pines 132,734 11.81%
Majority 39,512 3.52%

Republican primaries[edit]

1982 Massachusetts Republican gubernatorial primary
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican John W. Sears 90,617 50.71%
Republican John Lakian 46,675 26.12%
Republican Andrew Card 40,899 22.95%
Majority 43,942 24.59%

General election[edit]

1982 Massachusetts gubernatorial election
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Michael Dukakis (John Kerry) 1,219,109 59.48%
Republican John W. Sears (Leon Lombardi) 749,679 36.57%
Independent Frank Rich (John Davies) 63,068 3.08%
Libertarian Rebecca Shipman (Norman MacConnell, Jr.) 17,918 0.87%
Majority 469,430 22.91%