Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Saint Joseph, Missouri Voters Send A Message

We voted in Saint Joseph, Missouri yesterday and I think the results sent a message. A St. Joseph News-Press article by City Government Reporter Joe Blumberg says.
"Shearin scores shocking victory, Jones wishes mayor-elect well.

Ken Shearin surprised even himself by knocking off St. Joseph Mayor David Jones in Tuesday's election.

Mr. Shearin won 7,830 to 6,503, unofficially, a margin of nearly 10 percent. He'll be sworn in April 17 along with six other new members of the City Council.

"I'm surprised and a little scared and nervous," said the mayor-elect, "but I went into this thing (saying) if I win, I'll do what I said I'll do, if I lose, no big deal."

Mr. Jones wore the appropriate color Tuesday night, as his would-be celebration carried the mood of a funeral. Still he found the positive side of his loss, saying he'll now be a full-time dad and husband.

"I don't regret anything in the last four years," Mr. Jones said. "The only thing I was wrong on probably was that there was some anti-City Hall sentiment out there."

He said he thought the election results would've been closer.

"I knew change would be tough in St. Joseph, but I thought that if people saw the results, they would be OK with it," Mr. Jones said.

He said some of his supporters urged him to be more negative against Mr. Shearin, but he wished Mr. Shearin well Tuesday.

"He won fair and square. I have nothing bad to say. This chapter in St. Joseph and my life are over," he said.

One City Council meeting remains in Mr. Jones' 12-year run in St. Joseph city politics.

Mr. Shearin's immediate plans are to leave town, he said with a laugh. Seriously, he's been planning a four-day trip to Charleston, S.C.

"It's hard to intimidate me," he said, "but I'm intimidated by the people's confidence."

Mr. Shearin said his first priority is to stick with his campaign promise to put civility and progress on the same page at City Hall.

He promised to only serve four years and was gracious in victory by saying that after so long, any politician finds that people want a change.

"Fresh ideas and a fresh approach--they'll be old in eight years," he said.

A new mayor is not the only thing I got out of yesterdays election. I got a new City Councilman, Mike Bozarth. This will be the first time the district I live in will be represented by a member of the Libertarian Party. A Saint Joseph News-Press article by Business/Ag Reporter Susan Mires tells more about yesterdays election.

"Challengers defeat 2 incumbents, former councilman in council race, Baker ousts Gorman, Bozarth beats Jones, Roach defeats Boos.

The anti-establishment attitude extended to three district City Council races as two incumbents and a former city councilman lost Tuesday.

"It's unbelievable what took place," said Roger Baker.

Mr. Baker defeated incumbent Kim Gorman by posting 1,456 votes to her 1,306 votes to represent the 1st District.

"Everybody will wake up tomorrow and wonder what happened," Mr. Baker said.

Ms. Gorman said it was simply not a good night to be an incumbent.

"The people wanted a change of direction," she said. "I'm happy for Roger, and I'm glad the people got what they wanted."

Gary Roach said he was flabbergasted by the results. In unofficial returns, Mr. Roach defeated Glenn Boos by just 17 votes, 2,073 to 2,056 in the 4th District.

"I campaigned telling people that I thought they needed a new voice and a new face," Mr. Roach said.

Mr. Boos was not on the current council but had served previously.

Mr. Boos congratulated his opponent and said a recount could be possible.

"We'll have to see what happens in the next day or two," he said.

On the South Side, Mike Bozarth defeated incumbent Charlie Jones 1,471 to 1,278 in the 3rd District.

"I had a lot of people I talked to that said they wanted a change," Mr. Bozarth said.

He said he believed the current council's problems started with the vote for trash franchising, which was soundly defeated when it went before voters.

"I don't think the council was in touch with the people," Mr. Bozarth said.

He also said the council's approval of several tax increment financing packages along with proposals such as a business park off Pickett Road and a redesign of Ashland Avenue may have caused voters to favor outsiders.

"People didn't feel like they were a part of city government," Mr. Bozarth said.

Other issues, such as the library board and St. Joseph Museum controversies, may have contributed to an anti-incumbent attitude, he said.

Now the new council members will turn their attention to addressing the issues they brought up in their campaigns.

"We have a ton of work to do, I know that," Mr. Baker said"

I think We The People of Saint Joseph, Missouri have sent a message. We are tired of politics as usual. I hope that message will spread across the country and the results will show in the upcoming national elections. Maybe the time of third party and independent candidates has come at last.

God Bless America, God Save The Republic.

9 Comments:

Blogger Always On Watch said...

Ms. Gorman said it was simply not a good night to be an incumbent.

I wish I could see something like that around here. The same supervisors keep getting elected to the County Board. I have no explanation because everyone I know is dissatisfied with our supervisors. And I saw in today's paper that now the supervisors want their positions on the Board to be their only employment. Arrggghhh! We already call the County Government Facility "The Taj Mahal"--it is so luxurious, and that luxury is on the taxpayers' backs.

Hope the changes in your locale benefit you.

7:25 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

Congrats! This sounds like good news for Saint Joseph!

9:28 PM  
Anonymous Traven said...

I don't think such a defeat of an incumbrent in St.Joseph has taken place since you and I were kids, David: Arthur Meers removed and many were surprised.

5:26 AM  
Blogger American Crusader said...

Are you from St. Joseph Missouri? I went to high school in Leavenworth Kansas. Not very far away.

7:01 AM  
Blogger David Schantz said...

Arthur Meers, a name from the past that would have sent my Dad right over the edge. Saint Joseph seems to have a history of putting people in office that sound good at first. Then we find we can't get rid of them. I wish my old friend George Sherman (May He Rest In Peace) could have been here to see the outcome of this election. Right now I feel like we have ousted a dictator and his henchmen. The next four years should be interesting.

Traven, I feel I should know you, but I can't put a face with that handle. When I click on the link (Traven)with your comments it takes me to Wikipedia(?). Would you mind contacting me to let me know who you are? If you don't mind doing this click on my name at the top of A Republic, if you can keep it to get to my e-mail link. Put Traven in the subject line so it's not deleted by mistake. If you'd rather remain anonymous thats OK.

God Bless America, God Save The Republic.

7:38 AM  
Blogger Jake Porter said...

David,

Thanks for the update. I am very happy to know the Libertarian Party is running many candidates in Missouri and I think we will do very well.

Many voters are dissatisfied with the Republican Party selling out to big government and are looking for a new option.

3:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Karma Jones. Dishonesty will get you no where. More divideneds will follow.

6:04 PM  
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