Final score Thaddeus Kirkland 3,396. Wendell Butler 2,334.
In one of the strangest campaign seasons you’ll find anywhere, Chester voters selected Thaddeus Kirkland to serve them for the next four years.
It doesn’t take a math major to determine that Chester voters didn’t give much thought into which lever to pull. All the votes, from mayor, city and county council, school board, and the slate of judges for the Supreme, Commonwealth, and Common Pleas, had a nearly identical difference between republican and democratic votes. It appears folks just pulled the lever of their party and called it a night. With the democrats outnumbering republicans in Chester, this voting trend is likely to continue for the foreseeable future.
Unlike most elections where the winner starts the job at inauguration, there’s no reason for Kirkland to wait til January. He’s been perceived to have had major influence on the mayor’s office for the past few years as evidenced by his running mates siding to run with him instead of mayor Linder who Kirkland defeated in the democratic primary. Kirkland is so familiar with the goings-on in city hall that there’s no transition period required. And, Linder is the consummate lame duck who has almost totally not been present except for the most official functions of mayor.
One thing is for sure, Kirkland really wants to be the mayor of Chester. I was never certain Linder or Butler was as passionate at becoming mayor as Kirkland. Obviously, everyone wants to win if they’re in an election, but neither Butler or Linder embraces politics as Kirkland does. It’s obvious that becoming mayor of Chester is something Kirkland can now scratch off his bucket list.
Personally, I think his role in Harrisburg as State Rep is important to Chester. Obviously, the people of Chester believe he’s of more value to them as mayor. Since we haven’t heard anything, my guess is that the vacant State Rep position will go to someone outside of Chester. That’s how ‘politics’ works. But, only time will tell.
Congratulations to the victors.
(delcotimes.com link wasn’t behaving for me to place here)