Coakley, Baker Making Final Appeals To Voters

Republican Charlie Baker and Democrat Martha Coakley spent Sunday searching high and low for undecided voters - from church pews to tailgate parties - as the hours ticked down to Election Day.

The major-party candidates for Massachusetts governor both started the day attending morning services at the Jubilee Christian Church in Boston's Mattapan neighborhood.

Both have been trying to appeal to voters in urban and minority communities like Mattapan, traditionally Democratic strongholds.

Baker, as a Republican, has been making an extra effort to reach into those areas. He planned to return to the city's Roxbury neighborhood - another largely minority area - to greet voters later Sunday.

"We've spent a lot of time in communities of color and a lot of people we met in those communities were the people who helped us build our urban agenda which, if I'm fortunate enough to get elected, we're going to pursue pretty enthusiastically," Baker told reporters before the morning service.

Coakley said she's not giving any ground on issues important to cities and urban neighborhoods.

"We're very strong in Boston. We're very strong in New Bedford. We're strong in Lawrence. We're strong across the commonwealth because we stand up for people and for education and for earned sick time and for the things that people care about," Coakley said before entering the church.

Coakley, the state's attorney general, was accompanied by Gov. Deval Patrick, a fellow Democrat and campaign supporter, who said it's important that Democrats not assume voters are with them without doing the work needed to earn that support.

"This should be a competitive community," Patrick said, standing alongside Coakley. "It's wrong to take for granted any voter. And I know that Martha isn't taking for granted any voter, any neighborhood, any region of the state."

After the early morning service, Coakley attended a second service at another church before stopping by Faneuil Hall, where former Boston Mayor Tom Menino was lying in state.

She then headed to Foxboro to greet tailgaters at the Patriots game. Coakley also planned campaign stops in Hyannis, New Bedford, Fall River and Taunton.

Baker, a former health care executive and official in the administrations of former Republican Govs. William Weld and Paul Cellucci, planned campaign events in Malden, Woburn and Plymouth before greeting voters in Boston's Roxbury neighborhood. After a final stop in West Roxbury, Baker said he too planned to visit Faneuil Hall to pay his respects to Menino.

Cleo Muhammad said she was glad to see both candidates at church but hopes whoever wins makes a point of returning to the neighborhood and others like it. She pointed to Menino, who was known for regularly touching base in neighborhoods across the cities, even when he wasn't seeking re-election.

"I want to see the candidates not just during campaign season," said the 29-year-old employee of a nonprofit group and resident of the city's Roslindale neighborhood.

Both candidates plan to hit the campaign trail again Monday.

Polls have shown a relatively tight race between the two.

Three independent candidates, Evan Falchuk, Scott Lively and Jeff McCormick, are also on the ballot. The election is Tuesday.


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