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Bethlehem Dems sweep election

Clarkson beats DiMaggio 5,684 to 4,064

Supervis John Clarkson, Councilman Bill Reinhardt, and endorsed Democratic town board candidate Julie Sasso.

Supervis John Clarkson, Councilman Bill Reinhardt, and endorsed Democratic town board candidate Julie Sasso.

— The GOP endorsed candidates for Town Board were Linda Jasinski, a Conservative, and Dan Cunningham, a member of the Independence Party. The group’s main goals consisted of cutting taxes, lowering the town’s fund balance to provide tax relief and promoting economic development.

“When you talk about tax cuts, it doesn’t affect everybody the same,” said Cunningham. “So maybe the issues that we focused on were not as important to the people as we thought they should be.”

Julie Sasso and Councilman Bill Reinhardt were endorsed by the Democrats, and won with about 28 percent of the vote each.

Reinhardt said he was happy the Democratic Party remained positive throughout the campaign and Clarkson agreed.

“We don’t need to rely on false alliances. We don’t need to create fictions. We are the majority party. We are the responsible party,” said Clarkson to committee members during his victory speech. “The intelligent electorate we have in Bethlehem, they do not take easy answers, they do not take kindly to negative politics, and they certainly don’t want to see low-grade attack literature arriving in the mailboxes.”

DiMaggio said he felt the Democrats did their fair share of “mudslinging” as well, and did not feel all the blame should be placed on him.

“I don’t think there were major mistakes made in the campaign," he said. "I think there were equally nasty and vindictive responses from the other side.”

Looking to the future, DiMaggio said he would continue to be involved in the town’s Republican committee but did not think he would go back to being the party’s chairman because felt it was time for a new voice.

Clarkson said now that the Democrats had won, their responsibility is to leave the town a better place for future generations and to care about every sector and political party in the town.

“We have run based on civility, integrity and professionalism, and we will deliver that,” said Clarkson. “We don’t always agree with ourselves, let alone people of other political parties, but we deal with the issues straight forward, we will try to reflect everyone’s views, and when we are done I hope people will say, ‘They listened, they heard, they understood, and we’re going to move forward.’”

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