Greene locks up D.A. race

Rob Greene received enough Democratic write-in votes during Tuesday’s primary election to assure that he will be Warren County’s next district attorney.

Lisa Zuck, director of Elections and Voter Registration, said on Friday, “Rob Greene received 270 votes that were properly spelled and he will be on the Democratic side (of the ballot) as well (in the November general election).”

Greene also received over 200 votes with spelling variations.

Ross McKeirnan, the current Warren County district attorney, received slightly over 200 write-in votes, and Bernard T. Hessley received almost 150 votes, including many name variations for both candidates.

The county Board of Election, which is composed of the three Waren County Commissioners and Zuck, decided Friday morning which names and variations were acceptable and which were not.

Commissioner John Bortz noted, “We’ve done this for a long time, and we accept phonetic variations when the voter’s intentions are obvious.”

None of the votes remotely resembling McKeirnan or Hessley were disallowed, although one, “Grenn” was rejected.

Dan Ristau received well over half of the 163 Democratic write-in votes for Warren City mayor and will appear on the November ballot.

Zuck said, “County and city races require 100 names on a petition, or 100 write-in votes to be listed on the election, and all other local races require ten, except election inspector which requires five.”

She pointed out that in the November election, someone could win a write-in campaign with just one vote, but for races where one candidate is listed for both parties it would be very difficult.

Patricia Rosenstein’s write-in votes earned her a place on the ballot for both parties for a Region I seat on the Warren County School District’s board of directors. No one received enough write-in votes for seats representing Regions II and III.

Zuck said, “Greg Fraser clearly has enough votes to appear on the Democratic ticket” for a four-year seat on Warren City Council. No names will appear on the ballot for a two-year term.

Candidates earning a place on the Democratic ballot were Susan Kosinski, prothonotary/clerk of courts; Jerry Borden, county coroner; Vincent Duckett, Conewango Township supervisor; Thomas Kollar, Deerfield Township supervisor; Donald Saporito, Pleasant Township constable; Richard Hanson, Sheffield Township supervisor and Bonnie Mickelson, Watson Township auditor.

Receiving at least five votes and appearing on the Republican ballot for election judge are Elburn Briggs, Pine Grove Township and John Gregory, Sugar Grove. Appearing on the Democratic ticket are Thomas Ludwiszewski, Pine Grove Township, Martha Stuart, Sugar Grove; and Barbara Stankiewicz, Eldred Township.

Republican candidates who received enough write-in votes to appear on November’s ballot are Kevin Peterson, Freehold Township supervisor; Tim Thomas, Spring Creek supervisor; and Robert Stankiewicz, Eldred Township election judge.

Appearing on both parties ballots are David Flasher, Sugar Grove Township supervisor; and Mary Donahue, Deerfield Township tax collector.

Bortz noted that the write-in votes are much larger in number, and therefore more significant than when the old voting machines were used, because the new computer-driven machines make it much easier to write-in a name.

He also said, “There is a lot of work that goes into this. Ms. Zuck does an absolutely great job, making sure each machine is accurate” before the elections, and insuring that the votes are properly counted.

Some voters wanted to be more creative with their votes, writing-in ‘names’ like Anyone Else, Joe Shmoe, and others. Commissioner John Eggleston commented on one voter’s choice for Elk Township auditor saying, “I don’t think we want Darth Vader, although he might make a good tax collector.”

The results will become official next week, after a final tabulation.