Gomes can challenge Mitchell in New Bedford mayoral election, but will he?

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NEW BEDFORD, Mass. (WPRI) — City Councilor Brian Gomes now has the opportunity to challenge incumbent Mayor Jon Mitchell for his seat after they both received the most votes in Tuesday’s preliminary election.

But will he continue to run for mayor or seek re-election to the New Bedford City Council instead?

Mitchell – who is running for a fifth term and has won every year since he was first voted into office in 2011 – received 3,150 votes.

Gomes – who also filed to run in the race for New Bedford City Council – received 1,118 votes.

The four other mayoral candidates trailed far behind, with the closest to Gomes being Richard Tyson Moultrie at 596 votes.

Gomes had previously attempted to withdraw from the mayoral race after deciding to run for City Council instead, according to city spokesperson Jonathan Carvalho, but ultimately missed the deadline to do so.

While he’s garnered enough votes to challenge Mitchell, he was also selected as one of the five councilors-at-large in the New Bedford City Council election.

He now has six days following the preliminary election to withdraw from the mayoral race if he chooses. If Gomes does withdraw, Moultrie will take his place on the ballot come Nov. 5.

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