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Elections

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Ali Dieng Earns Dem Nomination for Burlington City Council Seat

Posted By on Thu, May 4, 2017 at 10:38 PM

Ali Dieng - COURTESY OF STEPHANIE SEGUINO
  • Courtesy of Stephanie Seguino
  • Ali Dieng
Ali Dieng claimed victory Thursday at Burlington's Ward 7 Democratic caucus, earning the chance to represent the party in a special election for an open city council seat in the New North End.

Dieng earned 76 votes to win easily, defeating Chris Trombly and Lorraine Carter-Lovejoy. Trombly received 15 votes and Carter-Lovejoy got 12, according to Steve McIntyre, vice chair of the Burlington Democratic Party and a Ward 7 resident.

Dieng, a 35-year-old West Africa native, will face off against Republican Vince Dober in the special election, which will be held on June 27. Other candidates may yet throw their hats in the ring — the filing deadline to run is May 22.

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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Two Democrats Join Contest for Open Burlington City Council Seat

Posted By on Wed, Apr 26, 2017 at 9:12 PM

Lorraine Carter-Lovejoy - COURTESY OF LORRAINE CARTER-LOVEJOY
  • Courtesy of Lorraine Carter-Lovejoy
  • Lorraine Carter-Lovejoy
Two more New North End residents have stepped up to run for Burlington's open city council seat. Chris Trombly and Lorraine Carter-Lovejoy will vie for the Democratic nomination to fill the Ward 7 seat that will be vacated in June by Tom Ayres.

Trombly and Carter-Lovejoy join Ali Dieng and Republican Vince Dober as candidates in the special election scheduled for June 27.

A Democratic caucus is scheduled for May 4. Dieng, an independent, has said he'll try to win the Dem's endorsement.

Trombly declared his candidacy Wednesday in a press release. The 37-year-old serves on the steering committee of the Wards 4 and 7 Neighborhood Planning Assembly and works as vice president of loan operations at People's United Bank.

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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Independent Ali Dieng to Run for Open Burlington City Council Seat

Posted By on Wed, Apr 19, 2017 at 1:45 PM

Ali Dieng - COURTESY OF STEPHANIE SEGUINO
  • Courtesy of Stephanie Seguino
  • Ali Dieng
A West Africa native has announced his bid for an open Burlington City Council seat that represents the New North End.

Ali Dieng, 35, will run as an independent. He's seeking to replace Democrat Tom Ayres, who plans to resign from his Ward 7 seat in June. Dieng, who said he'll seek endorsements from the Progressive and Democratic parties, will face Vince Dober, a Republican who announced earlier this month.

City officials said Tuesday that a special election to fill the vacancy will be held on June 27, the day after Ayres steps down.

If elected, Dieng would be the only New American — and the only nonwhite member — of the city council. He said he wants to engage more diverse voices in city politics. "We need representation from the communities the city serves," he said.

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Sunday, April 16, 2017

Bernie Sanders' Campaign War Chest Nears $3.9 Million

Posted By on Sun, Apr 16, 2017 at 10:40 PM

Sen. Bernie Sanders - FILE: JAMES BUCK
  • File: James Buck
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders
During the first three months of 2017, Sen. Bernie Sanders' (I-Vt.) campaign fundraising reflected his national ambitions. The unsuccessful presidential candidate-cum-progressive darling out-raised Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Congressman Peter Welch (D-Vt.) combined — and outspent both by large margins, according to campaign finance filings submitted April 15 to the Federal Election Commission.

Nearly all of the $215,694 Sanders brought in came from individual donors, many of whom hail from outside of Vermont. Sanders, who eschews contributions from most political action committees, received $6,093 from two PACs: The League of Conservation Voters PAC, which supports environmental causes, gave $1,093, and the America Works PAC, which is affiliated with Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), contributed $5,000.

More than 18 months before he faces reelection, Sanders has already accumulated $3,877,831 in his political war chest. That money could also be transferred to a presidential campaign fund, should he decide to run for the White House again in 2020.

The junior senator's expenses this quarter, which total $127,931, also underscore the fact that he's still in national campaign mode, nine months after losing to former secretary of state Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary. He paid $32,500 for website and fundraising services from Revolution Messaging, which ran his lucrative digital fundraising operation during that race.

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Monday, April 10, 2017

Republican Vince Dober to Run for Burlington City Council

Posted By on Mon, Apr 10, 2017 at 6:44 PM

Vince Dober - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy photo
  • Vince Dober
Republican Vince Dober is hoping to return to the Burlington City Council. Dober declared his candidacy for a seat on Friday, just after Democrat Tom Ayres said that he will step down from the council in June. That will force a special election for the Ward 7 seat in the New North End.

Dober, 53, served as a councilor from 2009 to 2013. Dober, who was formerly with the Vermont Air National Guard, decided not to run for reelection so he could spend more time building up his business, Backstage Pub and Restaurant in Essex Junction. "This was sort of just a little break," Dober said. "I bought a business and that business has stabilized."

Burlington will hold a special election in June, Ayres told Seven Days last week. The winning candidate would need to run again next Town Meeting Day to keep the seat; Ayres' term expires in March 2018.

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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Burlington Incumbent Wins Inspector of Elections Runoff

Posted By on Tue, Apr 4, 2017 at 8:55 PM

FILE PHOTO
  • File photo
Andrew Champagne spent 12 hours in Burlington's Old North End campaigning in the rain Tuesday — and his persistence paid off.

The incumbent Ward 2 inspector of elections kept his seat by edging challenger Adrian Burnett in a special election. The two men tied in a Town Meeting Day vote, but on Tuesday, Champagne won in a runaway: 150-50.

When the poll workers at the Integrated Arts Academy at H.O. Wheeler finished counting the ballots around 7:15 p.m. and announced the unofficial results, Champagne let out a whoop.

The 53-year-old incumbent praised the "pride people have in the Old North End, and the amount of respect people have for voting."

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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

After Tie, Burlington Inspector of Elections Candidates Square Off

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 12:19 PM

FILE PHOTO
  • File photo
After a dead heat on Town Meeting Day, two Burlington candidates for inspector of elections will face off for a second time.

On April 4, incumbent Andrew Champagne will try to inch past challenger Adrian Burnett in a runoff election for the position in Ward 2. Voters can cast ballots at the Integrated Arts Academy at H.O. Wheeler in the Old North End.

The contest comes after the March 7 tally ended in a deadlock: 272-272. It's the first race in recent history with such a result, according to assistant city clerk Amy Bovee.

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Former Rutland Mayor Describes Election Loss in VICE Interview

Posted By on Thu, Mar 16, 2017 at 5:47 PM

Chris Louras - COURTESY HBO
  • Courtesy HBO
  • Chris Louras
The show’s over for Chris Louras.

“VICE News Tonight” followed the former Rutland mayor Monday as he prepared for his last day in office. He lost his reelection bid March 7 to David Allaire by a big margin: some 776 votes.

The HBO show captured Louras packing up his things inside city hall, exchanging a hug with a colleague and driving off into the sunset in his Smart car (which bears an “I Love Rutland, VT!” bumper sticker).

Much of what he told Vice News during the four-minute clip echoed what he told Seven Days reporter Mark Davis. His loss was a referendum on his decision to relocate refugees to Rutland, he said, and he never saw it coming.

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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Rutland Mayor Says He Was 'Whooped' by Refugee Backlash

Posted By on Wed, Mar 8, 2017 at 4:56 PM

Mayor Chris Louras - FILE: CALEB KENNA
  • file: caleb kenna
  • Mayor Chris Louras
Rutland Mayor Chris Louras didn't utter the word "refugee" during his reelection kickoff speech, and tried desperately to make the campaign about more than just the resettlement debate that roiled his city for the past year.

But Wednesday, as he processed his lopsided defeat to Alderman Dave Allaire, the chief opponent of his plan to bring 100 Syrian and Iraqi refugees to the city, Louras said he had been wrong on two key points:

One, the refugee issue was the only one that mattered to voters. And two, he was apparently mistaken in his oft-stated belief that the refugees' supporters outnumbered their opponents in the community.

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Scott Votes Against Berlin School Budget, One of 18 Defeated in State

Posted By on Wed, Mar 8, 2017 at 11:44 AM

Gov. Phil Scott - FILE
  • file
  • Gov. Phil Scott
Updated at 1:10 p.m.

Gov. Phil Scott took his hardline approach on school budgets with him to the polls Tuesday when he voted against the school budget in his hometown of Berlin.

So, too, did the majority of town voters. The $3.5 million elementary school budget failed by a tally of 208-173, school board chair Carl Parton said Tuesday night.

Students in middle and high school attend the U-32 school in East Montpelier.

Scott predicated his 2018 state budget proposal on level-funding school budgets across the state and urged voters to “do the math” as they voted at town meetings.

town-meeting-day.png
But the math on school budgets is never simple. Depending on how you measure an increase, the budget Scott voted against arguably fits the definition of level-funding.

Scott said in a phone interview Tuesday night that after questioning the school board at the meeting, he concluded that the budget represented a per-pupil increase.

“Carl (Parton) couldn’t tell us exactly what the per-pupil amount was but it was at least 5 percent,” the governor said.

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