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Incumbents solidify leads in 8 Cleveland City Council primaries

The Plain Dealer  Cleveland logo The Plain Dealer Cleveland 9/15/2021 Robert Higgs, cleveland.com

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Eight incumbent members of Cleveland City Council involved in primary elections Tuesday solidified their leads as about 40% of the votes cast in Cleveland had been tallied, unofficial results showed.

Ten of Cleveland City Council’s wards had primary elections Tuesday. The top two finishers will face off in November. In two wards, there was no incumbent candidate.

One of those contests, in Ward 7, featured two former members of City Council in a race with 11 candidates seeking to replace Basheer Jones, a mayoral candidate.

In Ward 4, former Councilman Ken Johnson, who lost his seat after his conviction on 15 federal corruption charges, was on the ballot with 10 other candidates. Johnson was in fifth place.

Here’s the unofficial results for the primary contests from the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections from the absentee and early voting ballots.

Ward 1

Incumbent Councilman Joe Jones led the race with nearly 67% in this ward in southeast Cleveland. Kimberly F. Brown had nearly 26%. Aylwin Bridges, a retired consulting executive, had just over 5%. Marc Crosby, who operates his own business, had about 2%. Nearly 2,800 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 2

Incumbent Councilman Kevin Bishop led the race with 76% in this East Side ward along Cleveland’s southern border. Monique Moore, a general contractor, was second with 13%. Azel Bolden, who runs a non-profit, had nearly 10%. Bill Berry, a job supervisor, had just over 1%. About 1,150 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 3

Incumbent Kerry McCormack led the race with nearly 74% in this ward that includes downtown and the near West Side. Ayat Amin, an environmentalist and marketing specialist, had about 20%. Mike Rogalski, a former Cuyahoga County employee, had 6%. About 1,620 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 4

Precinct committeewoman Deborah A. Gray led with more than 29%. Cleveland Public Library employee Erick B. Walker was second with about 16%. Trailing him were retired lawyer and former City Councilman Craig E. Willis, about 13%; self-employed business consultant Ashley R. Evans, about 10%; Ken Johnson, nearly 8%; Cleveland schools employee Mario Snowden, about 5%; pharmacy student Cecil Ekechukwu, nearly 5%; businessman Mike Shomo, just over 4%; mental health worker Arnold Shurn, nearly 4%; Vanessa Crumb, nearly 3%; and retired police officer, Rowland Mitchell, just over 2%. More than 1,800 votes had been counted.

Ward 5

Incumbent Councilwoman Delores Gray led the race with about 48% in this East Side ward based in the Central neighborhood. Richard Starr, a director for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio, had 46%. Dyrone Smith, a Libertarian, had 6%. About 680 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 7

Among 11 candidates seeking to replace mayoral candidate Basheer Jones, State Rep. Stephanie Howse slightly widened her early lead, with nearly 29%, followed by lawyer TJ Dow with 24%.

Shana Roberts, the Ward 7 office manager under Jones, was in third at 17%

Trailing them were pastor Antoinette Carter, 2%; lawyer Russ Gates, 1%; consultant Daniel Graves, 14%; and Nathaniel Cory Hartfield, a great-grandson of former Councilwoman Fannie Lewis, 0.2%. Others were organizer and activist Jeff Mixon, about 2%; former police detective Charlotte Perkins, 8%; Mike Seals, 1%; and Isiah Thomas, a Greater Cleveland Food Bank worker, had about 3%. About 1,230 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 8

Long-time incumbent Councilman Michael Polensek led the race with 80% in this East Side ward based in Collinwood. In second was Aisia Jones, a Black Lives Matter activist, at about 14%. Donald Boyd, who lost to Polensek in 2017 by wide margins, had 6%. About 3,140 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 11

Incumbent Councilman Brian Mooney led the race with more than 53% in this West Side ward based in Westown. Michael Hardy, a teacher, had nearly 25%. Donna Woods, a community activist who works at United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Cleveland, had just over 22%. About 860 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 12

Incumbent Councilman Anthony Brancatelli led the race with about 48% in this ward that straddles the Cuyahoga River in Slavic Village and Brooklyn Centre. Rebecca Maurer, a lawyer and activist, had 39%. Small business owner Shalira Taylor had 11%, and Tawayne McGee had 3%. About 1,150 votes had been counted in the race.

Ward 17

Incumbent Councilman Charles J. Slife led the race with nearly 64% in this West Side ward based in Kamm’s Corners. Mary Kathleen O’Malley, a sales executive, had 27%. Ken S. Trump, a school security expert, had 9%. About 1,600 votes had been counted in the race.

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