Salem elections finish in GOP's favor

Salem – Republicans swept elections Tuesday night, winning all but one of the races in town. The numbers came in around 9:50 p.m., which officials said was one of the latest announcements in recent memory.

The Republicans gained a seat on the Board of Selectmen, as Republican challenger Ed Chmielewski beat Democratic incumbent Robyn McKenney with 501 votes to her 494.

"I look forward to serving the town," said Chmielewski, a supervisor with the Connecticut judicial branch who ran on a platform of economic responsibility. He pledged to work with members of both parties.

Chmielewski, who is also the Republican Town Committee chair, praised the rest of the Republican ticket, calling its contenders "highly skilled." The Republicans were elected in a high turnout, with 37 percent of registered voters participating. Turnout in 2011 was 31 percent.

He said it was a "humbling experience" to beat McKenney, who he said was good candidate in her own right.

First Selectman Kevin Lyden, who ran an uncontested race as an unaffiliated candidate endorsed by both major parties, was elected to a third term. Another unaffiliated and cross-endorsed candidate, former First Selectman Robert Ross, was re-elected to the board of selectmen.

"The townspeople have spoken. I look forward to working with the newly elected board and commission members," said Lyden.

Republicans also won the town clerk election and two seats on the Board of Education.

Assistant town clerk Linda Flugrad beat her Democratic opponent, building department clerk Diane Weston, by 98 votes. Republican incumbents Pamela Munro and Stephen Buck were re-elected to the Board of Education. Democrat Sam Rindell was also elected.


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