Oddly enough, sister of D.A. William Bennet, Kateri Walsh was not in the top nine. Newcomer Patrick Markey in a stunning performance shot into the second spot beating out political relic William Foley. Tim Rooke, known for his straightforwardness and committed convictions, also edged out Foley.
I won't dwell on the actual blow by blow. I will leave Bill Dusty's roundup on the results and colorful commentary to tell the rest of that story.
However it is not really possible to take much stock in these results. There was a hope among challengers that the preliminary results may act as something of a free polling sample. While the percentages of those who showed up may bear that out, it lacked the scientific finesse of Gallup-type poll. In addition, history has shown previous examples of skewed preliminaries telling different stories from what the general yields. It also does not jive with previous elections.
It is entirely possible that Rooke, who among the most tenured councilors seems most attuned with the concerns and exasperations of Springfield's middle class, may beat out a great deal of the council. However, it is doubtful that Foley will be so low on the list in the general. Another example is Jose Tosado. No matter what direction the city's demographics are going in, he had the lowest vote total of the incumbents in the last election. No way he stays on top.
For the challengers that survived, it will mean a lot more work leading up to the general. Even Markey whose much-deserved showing will need to work 24/7 in the next month and a half to retain that position. In addition, the strange outcome of incumbents and challenger results gives hope to everybody, showing that many of the seats are anybodies' race. Although Walsh's drop was an anomaly, we may very well see a few incumbents knocked out this election. But let's just make sure they are replaced by good people. For example, Mo Jones, former councilor who beat out Walsh and Mazza-Moriarty, has reputed connections to the Asselin Clan. You remember them, right?
I am humbled by the voters who turned out and showed their support for my re-election. The turnout for the November election will obviously be higher with the mayor’s race topping the ticket. Every council candidate should be mindful of the higher turnout and re-double their efforts to express why they should be elected and not take the voters for granted. We have a number of challenges ahead of us as a community and the campaign allows a candidate the chance to talk about what they would do to help Springfield continue to rebound.
I am very greatful to all the people who did get out and vote and my friends and family who are helping me in my campaign.
Phase two of the campaign starts now and I am going to work as hard as I can to get my message out. I want people to know I have the best interest of the city at heart and will do whatever it takes to help Springfield build itself back up.
I want us to be ready to take over when the Control Board leaves and we need to make sure the City Council will be fiscally responsible. I have worked with Mayor Ryan and know I can work with him as a City Councilor to keep Springfield on the right track.