CLIFTON PARK: Hughes romps in Independence primary

Scott Hughes was appointed to the town board to replace Roy Speckhard earlier this year, so the Tuesday, Sept. 18, Independence Party primary was the first chance voters had to voice their opinion on the Republican councilman.

Apparently the Independence Party voters liked what they saw.

In unofficial results posted on the board of elections' Web site, Hughes received 105 of the 195 votes for town board 53.8 percent.

Independence voters were asked to choose two of the three candidates. Hughes, fellow Republican councilman Tom Paolucci, and Democrat challenger Nancy Bellamy vied for the top two spots.

The Paolucci-Bellamy race was too close to call Wednesday night, with Paolucci leading by just two votes. Paolucci received 46 votes to Bellamy's 44.

It won't be known which one will appear on the Independence line until Tuesday, Sept. 25, when the board of elections will open up the sealed absentee ballots that had to be postmarked by Tuesday, Sept. 18. According to a board of elections document, 11 absentee ballots for Independence Party voters in Clifton Park were sent out.

I want to thank the Independence Party voters of Clifton Park for their overwhelming support. We won a tremendous victory for open and accountable government, environmental conservation and taxpayer relief, and tonight is just the beginning," Hughes said at a Republican gathering on primary election night at Venezia Pizza and Pasta in Clifton Park. "Looking ahead to November, voters can expect a high-energy campaign from me that focuses on issues and delivers a positive vision for our future."

Hughes said that he logged more than 150 miles on his car the two days before the primary election, knocking on more than 600 Independence voters' doors. But he said he wasn't overly confident " he prepared both a victory and concession statement, although the victory statement was printed from a computer while the concession statement was hand-written.

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