Voters choose local leaders.Carey Torrice
Voters chose local leaders But voter turnout falls short of expectations HEIDI ROMAN C & G Staff Writer Published: November 12, 2008 MACOMB COUNTY – Despite long lines reported in the early morning at polling locations across Macomb County Nov. 4, local clerks say the crowds simmered down to asteady stream throughout the day, and voter turnout was actually lower than they predicted. In Clinton Township, 67.4 percent of the community’s 74,201 registered voters cast a ballot Nov. 4.
“That actually surprised me,” said Township Clerk Dennis Tomlinson.
“I’d estimated an 85-88 percent turnout.”
In Fraser, just shy of 75 percent of the city’s 10,797 registered voters participated in the election, according to Clerk Pam Lavers. Like Tomlinson, she was expecting a higher showing, closer to an 80-85 percent turnout.
Lavers said voters reported waiting in lines between 30 minutes to an hour when the polls first opened, but there were little to no lines during the day and in the evening.
“The first hour at the polls was when we had the mad rush,” she said.
“After that, it returned to normal.”
In most precincts, voters were lined up outside before the doors even opened at 7 a.m., but voters were pleasantly surprised to find short lines throughout the rest of the day.
The actual turnout in both communities was just a bit higher than what’s typical of a presidential election.
But considering how many voters had come in early to fill out absentee ballots, clerks were expecting bigger crowds at the polls.
Both Tomlinson and Lavers said everything went smoothly, and no problems were reported at the precincts.
The presidential race drew most of the buzz, but many local officials were also elected Nov. 4. In Clinton Township and Fraser, the following races were decided: In the District 16 race for county commissioner in northern Clinton Township, Democratic incumbent Carey Torrice, an actress and private investigator, was re-elected with 7,861 votes, giving her 55 percent. Minister and financial planner William Revoir had tried to reclaim the seat, which he held before Torrice ousted him in 2006. Revoir, a Republican, earned 6,435 votes, or 45 percent. The District 16 race had received much attention after Torrice was nominated “Hottest Politician” by the Website TMZ.com.
Incumbent Ed Bruley, a Democrat, reclaimed his seat as county commissioner for District 17, which covers the city of Mount Clemens and eastern Clinton Township, by receiving 9,337 votes, or 69.5 percent. His challenger, Tony Bursey, a Republican, got 4,107 votes, or 30.5 percent.
In District 19, which represents central Clinton Township, County Commissioner Paul Gieleghem was reelected with more than 10,000 votes, or 67.4 percent. The Democratic incumbent was challenged by Republican James Korona. Korona earned 4,858 votes, or 32.6 percent.
Democratic incumbent County Commissioner Kathy Tocco got a vote of reassurance in District 20, which represents Fraser and southwest Clinton Township. She won 8,881 votes, or 65.7 percent, in the district against Republican challenger Lynn Evans, who earned 4,641 votes, or 34.3 percent.
Tocco, an attorney and 20-year resident of Fraser, will serve her second two-year term.
Incumbent Fred Miller, Democrat, won the two-year term of state representative for District 31 with 26,404 votes, or 66.1 percent of the vote.
Daniel Tollis, a Republican, followed with 12,277 votes, or 30.7 percent of the vote; and James Miller, a Libertarian, was in last place with 1,263, or 3.2 percent of the vote.
In the state Legislature, Republican incumbent state Rep. Kim Meltzer was able to resist the wave of Democratic support and was re-elected in District 33, which represents northern Clinton Township and Macomb and Ray town-ships. She beat challenger Andrew Prasiloski, a Democrat, with 32,915 votes, or 59.1 percent. Prasiloski took 22,764 votes, or 40.9 percent.
41B District Court Judge Linda Davis was unopposed in her bid for reelection.
A partial term ending in 2011 was won by incumbent Judge Sheila Miller, who earned 26,977 votes, or 53.2 percent, against challenger Joseph Ciaramitaro, an attorney. Ciaramitaro earned 23,764, or 46.8 percent.
Macomb County Prosecuting Attorney Eric Smith scored a victory over Republican challenger Michael Wrathell. Smith, a Democrat, was reelected with 268,299 votes in Macomb County, or 69.5 percent, over Wrathell’s 117,618 votes, or 30.5 percent.
Macomb County Sheriff Mark Hackel got a vote of confidence, earning his seat for another four-year term with 314,778 votes, or 78.4 percent.
Republican Kristi Dean was unsuccessful in removing him from office, earning 86,799 votes, or 21.6 percent.
Macomb County Clerk Carmella Sabaugh will serve another four-year term. The Democratic incumbent, who has held the position since 1992, earned 261,990 votes in the county, or 68.5 percent. Her opponent, Republican Michael Arsenault, earned 120,249 votes, or 31.5 percent.
In the race for Macomb County treasurer, Democratic incumbent Ted Wahby was re-elected to the position with 228,647 votes, or 61 percent.
Republican Lawrence Rocca’s 145,972 votes, or 39 percent, were not enough to unseat Wahby, who once served as mayor of St. Clair Shores.
Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Anthony Marrocco, who has held the position since 1993, was elected for another four-year term.
Marrocco earned 232,079 votes, or 62.8 percent, over Republican Michael Barber’s 137,461 votes, or 37.2 percent.
Macomb County Circuit Court judges Peter Maceroni, Diane Druzinski, Matthew Switalski and John Foster were all re-elected to a six-year term.
None of them had a challenger.
Maceroni received 26 percent; Druzinski, 25.4 percent; Switalski, 25.4 percent; and Foster, 23.2 percent of the vote Judge Kathryn George will serve another term as Macomb County Probate Judge. The Sterling Heights resident earned 169,395 votes, or 60.5 percent, to beat challenger Debra Lux-Roland, who earned 110,714 votes, or 39.5 percent.
Detailed elections results for Fraser are listed on the city’s Web site, www.fraser.govoffice.com. A full breakdown of results in Clinton Township is available at www.clintontownship-mi.gov.
Copyright, 2008, Fraser-Clinton Township Chronicle (MI), All Rights Reserved.