Sen. Lisa Baker proved to be the most popular candidate on the ballot in Wyoming County, garnering 82 percent of the vote in Tuesday’s midterm election.
By Rick Hiduk
(Also published in the Rocket-Courier)
Wyoming County residents seeking immediate results to Tuesday’s midterm elections were disappointed on Wednesday morning to find that there were no countywide election results posted at the county’s website as there have been in recent years. Initially, only statewide and individual precinct results were available, and the latter were a tedious read.
The official statement at 8 am: “Official tally is Friday at 9 am. Expect nothing before then.”
Finally, at about 10 am, the county totals came through, yielding no major surprises. Of slightly more than 60 percent of registered voters turning out to vote, about 74 percent of them voted a straight Republican ticket.
While Democrats retained the governorship, and Bob Casey, Jr. held his U.S. Senate seat over contender Republican Lou Barletta, Wyoming County voters supported gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner with 60 percent of the vote and Barletta with 62 percent of ballots cast. The statewide tally in the contest between Republican Tom Marino and Democratic contender Marc Friedenberg mirrored results in Wyoming County at 66 for Marino and 33 percent for Friedenberg.
Incumbents Lisa Baker and Karen Boback decidedly won their contests for senator and representative, respectively, of the State General Assembly 20th and 117th districts. Ironically, neither Republican candidate had a Democratic challenger, but Green Party candidate polled a respectable 17 percent in Baker’s 20th District, and Libertarian candidate Lou Jasikoff received 20 percent of the vote in the race against Boback.
Baker, in fact, had the best showing among Republicans in Wyoming County at 82 percent of the vote. Wagner had the poorest showing at 60 percent. The best that Democratic candidates were able to do in Wyoming County this year were in the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races, where Wolf and Casey polled 11 and 13 percent over the straight party vote, respectively.
Wyoming County director of elections and voter registration Florence Kellett related that there were no major issues at any of the county’s polling locations. “It was a fairly quiet day,” she stated.
In 2016, when nearly 80 percent of the county’s eligible voters turned out, some polling locations had to remain open well past 7 pm, and results were not finalized until after midnight. Kellett indicated that she and her staff wrapped up the counting of the 10,299 votes cast by 10 pm on Tuesday night.