Lancaster City Mayoral Race
Out of 7,261 votes cast yesterday in the race for Lancaster city mayor, Rick Gray won re-election by a mere 313 votes. That’s a much slimmer margin (orders of magnitude) than I anticipated.
The slim margin of victory (which at one point, when 79% of precincts were reporting, was as low as a 131-vote lead) raises the question of why Gray (whose re-election I supported) declared victory so early, as reported by the Intelligencer Journal:
Gray claimed victory before a crowd of supporters at his campaign headquarters less than two hours after polls closed.
My friend Russell Frost tells me that there were other facts known at the scene, which justified the early victory declaration. I am interested to learn (from intrepid reporters, I hope) what those other factors were. I just hope it wasn’t my obviously premature call for Gray at 9:15 p.m.
Lancaster City Council Race
I chaired the Democrats for Holden committee, since I favor a diversity of voices in the legislative branch of local government. Matt Holden gave a very strong performance, stacking up 3,303 votes, compared to 3,851 for Todd Smith, 4,007 for Tim Roschel, 4,036 for Jose Urdaneta, and 4,255 for Louise Williams. Artie See reports that Matt congratulated the Democratic candidates in person:
Matt Holden was courteous enough to stop by Rick Gray’s campaign headquarters and personally congratulate Gray and the four Democratic City Council candidates on their victories. But by the time the party broke up, Smithgall hadn’t even called Rick Gray.
In Lititz, Democratic challenger Patrick O’Keeffe lost his bid for Lititz Council. It was an interesting campaign to watch. Because he was running in a Republican stronghold, his race looked a lot like a third-party candidacy in a national race—it was driven by the mission of given voice to issues the majority had ignored, and given an alternative choice, even if people didn’t choose it.
In Lancaster Township, Democrat Ben Bamford of High Industries was elected to the board of supervisors by 11 votes.
Voters in Donegal won’t pay for a new high school.