By Danielle Lynch, Delaware County Daily Times
The Republican countywide slate sailed to victory during Tuesday’s election despite the fact that the county Democratic Party now has an edge in voter registration.
There were two county council seats and two seats on the County Common of Pleas that were up this cycle. In addition, the three row office positions — sheriff, register of wills and controller — were also up this cycle. The Republican candidates in all of those races had an edge over the Democratic candidates, according to the unofficial ballot results late Tuesday night. All results are unofficial until certified by the county Election Bureau.
This was the first election cycle in the county’s history that the Delaware County Democratic Party had more registered voters than the local GOP. Of the county’s 385,609 voters, there are 170,317 Democrats and 169,653 Republicans which left 45,639 registered with other parties or without affiliation, according to county records. That means the Democrats had an edge of 664 voters this election cycle.
The latest voter registration figures in Delaware County are a stark contrast from two decades ago. In 1992, there were 324,241 registered voters in Delaware County, according to county officials. Of that total, 218,774 were Republicans and 82,783 were Democrats.
The Republican candidates for Delaware County Council included two incumbents: council Vice Chairman Mario Civera of Upper Darby, a former longtime state legislator, former Upper Darby councilman and owner of a deli, and Councilman David White, a former Ridley Township commissioner and owner of a mechanical contractor company.
White and Civera ran against Upper Providence Democrat Bill Clinton and Chester Democrat Patricia Worrell. Clinton is an Upper Providence councilman and a faculty member at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. Clinton is also a former chief operating officer of Delta Dental Massachusetts Worrell is the owner of a cleaning service company and chairwoman of the zoning hearing board in Chester.
The five-member county council has consisted solely of Republican members for decades. Council has not had a Democratic member since the Home Rule Charter was put into effect in the mid-1970s. The charter removed a mandate for two-party representation on county council, and Republicans have controlled it since.
Civera and White took the lead over Worrell and Clinton for the two seats on county council. Civera had 55,429 votes, White had 53,683 votes, Clinton had 43,800 votes and Worrell had 43,779 votes, according to early ballot returns Tuesday night. All results are unofficial until certified by the county Election Bureau.
“We’re very happy and very appreciative of the county residents’ support,” White said at the Springfield Country Club Tuesday night. “And we’re going to continue to move the county in the right direction.
White said county council will continue to look at for the working men and women here in Delaware County.
“I think we had a great campaign countywide and I’m very happy,” said Civera. “Even though I didn’t get the endorsement from the Delaware County Daily Times, I’ll forgive them this time.
“We’re going to carry forward what we said — our economic development plan. And we’re not going to forget about our friendly animals, either.”
Clinton congratulated Civera and White during a phone interview Tuesday night. He said the countywide Democratic slate is willing to work with the Republicans going forward.
“We congratulate (the Republicans) for an effective campaign, and we want to let them know we have put together a solid team that’s ready to work with them in providing better county governance for the county,” Clinton said.
Republican Mary McFall Hopper, regulatory counsel for Aqua America Inc. from Ridley Park and former Ridley Park council president, ran for sheriff against Springfield Democrat Rocco Polidoro, commander of the Springfield American Legion Post and owner of an insurance agency.
Hopper took the lead over Polidoro, according to early ballot returns. Hopper had 55,711 votes and Polidoro had 43,977 votes late Tuesday night.
Hopper said she was overwhelmed and thrilled to be elected the next county sheriff. She said she will continue to build on the efforts of previous sheriffs and see what she can do to make “a great organization greater.”
County Controller Edward O’Lone, a Marple Republican who is also the township’s finance director and certified public accountant, ran for re-election against Swarthmore resident David Boonin, the owner of an economic and financial consulting business. Boonin is a registered Independent, but ran with the Democratic slate.
O’Lone took the lead over Boonin, according to the early ballot results. O’Lone had 54,123 votes and Boonin had 44,616 votes.
Media Democrat Frank Daly, a former Media councilman, former mayor and attorney, ran against Republican Jennifer Holsten Maddaloni, an attorney from Thornbury, for register of wills. Maddaloni took the lead over Daly, according to early ballot returns. Maddaloni had 54,793 votes and Daly had 45,302 votes.
Republicans Richard Cappelli, a magisterial district judge from Concord, and Edgmont supervisor and attorney William “Chip” Mackrides, ran against Democrats Steven Chanenson, a Radnor resident and Villanova University law professor and chairman of the Pennsylvania Sentencing Commission, and labor attorney and child advocate Nancy Walker of Nether Providence for county judge.
Cappelli and Mackrides took the lead over Chanenson and Walker, according to early ballot returns. Mackrides had 52,816 votes, Cappelli had 54,964 votes, Walker had 45,637 votes and Chanenson had 41,829 votes late Tuesday night.