On to November

Kessinger, Snyder win GOP nominations for commissioner

SARAH SMELTZ/THE EXPRESS At left, Miles Kessinger walks into the Piper building with his daughter, Jamie and wife, Marly. At right, Jeff Snyder with his campaign manager, Betty Schantz, 90, who has been his campaign manager for all three of his campaigns.

From staff reports

LOCK HAVEN — Incumbent Jeff Snyder is one step closer to securing his third term as Clinton County commissioner, while former county commissioner Miles Kessinger is one step closer to taking the seat he left 21 years ago.

Snyder and Kessinger will go against Democrats Angela Harding and incumbent Paul Conklin in the Nov. 5 general election when three commissioners will be seated.

The Republican ballot was crowded and tight, with Kessinger, Snyder, and Michele Whitney each taking the lead at various points as the county’s 34 precincts’ votes were tallied.

Once the dust settled, Snyder received a total of 2,203 votes and Kessinger tallied 1,703.

SARAH SMELTZ/THE EXPRESS County workers who helped collect the ballots from each precinct as they arrived at the Piper Building on Monday night. They are, from left, Wenda Butler, Kim Phillips, Michelle Sonnie, Jann Meyers, and Cathy Dremel.

Michele Whitney fell just short, with 1,627 votes and Mitch Christensen managed 800, with a total of 80 write-in votes.

“I am feeling good and I am humbled that the citizens of this county have faith and trust in me to continue to work hard. We kept the confidence and never took it for granted,” Snyder said, as he sat beside his campaign manager, Betty Schantz.

Schantz, 90, has been Snyder’s campaign manager since his first run for commissioner. She smiled broadly when asked what she thought about Snyder’s win last night. “I knew he would win,” she said.

Kessinger who arrived at the Piper Building just before 11 p.m. upon learning that he had won a slot on the November ballot, was overcome with emotion.

His wife, Marly and daughter, Jamie, at his side, he was greeted at the door with congratulations before making his way to the elevator to join Snyder and others who were waiting for him on the second floor.

SARAH SMELTZ/THE EXPRESS At left, Miles Kessinger walks into the Piper building with his daughter, Jamie and wife, Marly. At right, Jeff Snyder with his campaign manager, Betty Schantz, 90, who has been his campaign manager for all three of his campaigns.

“I’m just so overwhelmed,” he said, his face bright red from standing out in the sun at the polls all day. “I’m just so humbled by the support I got. Out of this for 21 years and coming back… to get this far… it’s just amazing,” he said.

Snyder said he believes he and Kessinger will make a good team.

“Miles and I have past experience working together. I worked on the Keystone Central School Board with him and with our combined experience I expect to be able to keep things running smoothly. As Republican candidates, we will work together as a team so we are successful come November,” Snyder said.

And so it will be Republicans Kessinger and Snyder and Democrats Harding and Conklin in November. Voters will vote for two and the top three vote getters will make up the new board of county commissioners.

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