Ireton, Shields, and Day Sweep Salisbury City Elections

Incuments Mayor Jim Ireton and Councilwoman Shanie Shields, along with challenger Jake Day swept today’s Salisbury city elections in a landslide.  The results were:

  Joe Albero


  Jim Ireton


District 1    
  April Jackson


  Cynthia Polk


  Shanie Shields


District 2    
  Debbie Campbell


  Jake Day


While these results are not official, the margin of victory for each candidate was large enough to negate any impact from the counting of absentee and provisional ballots.  There are approximately 300 absentee ballots outstanding.  As of today, approximately 250 ballots had been returned.

In addition to the margins of victory, probably the biggest surprise was voter turnout.  While Salisbury has a reputation of abysmal turnout in municipal elections, it has continued to grow each cycle.  This year’s turnout saw a dramatic drop – to 17.32% citywide compared to 21.10% four years ago.  While the addition of absentee and provisional ballots will increase the turnout percentage slightly, there will still be a large decrease.

The council will reorganize later this month.


For additional analysis of the 2013 Salisbury election, tune in to WSDL (90.7 FM) at 9 AM Friday when DelMarVa Observer’s G. A. Harrison joins WSDL’s Don Rush and SU political science professor Michael O’Loughlin on Delmarva Today for an election post-mortem.  The show can also be seen on-demand at a later date.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The margin of victory wasn’t a surprise to many and it wasn’t less than a hundred, so you don’t have to blame yourself (our previous exchange.) I’m relieved to know the folks with whom I was talking were right about the “lock.” I believe the appallingly low voter turnout has a lot to do with dissatisfaction with both candidates, and the ones who did show up chose the lesser of two evils. Albero will never win over the voters until/unless he stops the vile comments and attacks that consistently appear on his blog. He is responsible whether he writes them or not. You may have lots of political experience, but you can’t win with someone like that.

    • G. A. Harrison says:

      First, I apologize for taking so long to approve this, I’ve been on the road.

      I understand your view on this, I truly do. As I was getting around to comments, I’m also preparing for a radio show Friday. I can make a case (whether I agree with you or not) for everything except the turnout numbers. If they only applied to Albero, I could see it. However, it does not explain Campbell. Apathy is one thing, but to see turnout drop like a rock after 10 years of incremental upticks (turnout was still abysmal), there is something else going on.

      Take care.

      • Anonymous says:

        I appreciate the reply but I believe it does explain Campbell. I would say Campbell’s demise came as a direct result of her alliance with Albero. People really do feel that strongly about him and his blog. You may not agree, and I understand, but for many people I know (those who voted and those who didn’t/couldn’t), even a perceived association with him is the kiss of death, politically speaking. People don’t necessarily love Day, but, right or wrong, a vote for him was a vote against Albero. You and I have both been around long enough to know people vote their hearts over their minds more often than not. Thanks for posting.

        • G. A. Harrison says:

          I understand your POV, but the numbers don’t seem to bear you out. I was discussing just this same thing on the radio this morning and the turnout numbers tell a very different story. It doesn’t appear that the tens of thousands of dollars spent on behalf of Jake Day had much effect. In a surprising turn, Albero did better among the African-American community in District 1 than with the predominately white electorate of District 2. No, the bottom line was that Ireton and Day operated an effective operation to drive their voters to the polls (primarily via phone bank). The general electorate was either too apathetic or too turned off to vote. End result – a huge victory for Ireton and Day. People may complain, but the fact is that they won fair and square.

          The election is effectively over. Now comes the work of governance for Ireton, Day, Mitchell, and Shields. Will Day fall in line with Ireton to raise taxes? Will Day, Mitchell, and Shields stand firm against Ireton’s lock-out ordinance or will Ireton simply let it die a quiet death? Who will Ireton appoint as city attorney (assuming Day, etc. keep word about repealing charter change)? Will Day support Paul Wilber if that is the Ireton appointment? These are (just some of) the things that are will tell an interesting story in the future.

          BTW – look for a post-election analysis as soon as the video from today’s show is available.

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