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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, November 09, 2015

The Workhorse Who Failed to Work

Scott Parsons is the hardest working member on Northampton County Council. In 2014, his attendance record at Council and Committee meetings was a whopping 97%, more than anyone else on Council. He was able to do that while working a blue collar job at a slate quarry. He brought the perspective of a working class guy. But as dedicated as he was on Council, he was a reluctant campaigner in the Republican Northern Tier, which he represents. So unfortunately for all of us, he came up short in a bid by Republican Matt Dietz to replace him last week.

By way of background, the northern tier view may be economically depressed, but is the most beautiful part of the Lehigh Valley. Their turnout in this election cycle was very high. County-wide, turnout was 21.08%, far better than expected. But in places like Upper Mount Bethel, it was 31% in one precinct.

Also, a heavy Italian contingent seemed to help Scomillio in the Slate Belt. Murray may be half Italian, but has an Irish last name. It appears that Scomillio's Italian ancestry helped him win in places like Bangor and Roseto, where he really should have lost.

Matt Dietz, the Council victor in the northern tier, ran a very good campaign. He had a lot of grass roots support and was everywhere. His ten point margin of victory is an electoral landslide. But Parsons could have beaten him. Instead of running against Dietz and his tea party tendencies, Parsons should have run against Executive John Brown, who shackled taxpayers with consultant contracts to make himself look good, tried to stick the county with improper expense vouchers, gave illegal raises to his cronies and wanted to borrow money to balance the budget. Dietz, a fly boy who is the darling of the business elite, could have been painted as more of the same.

* He needed to work the boroughs harder. They are Democratic strongholds. Yet he barely won in Pen Argyl and Roseto, where he should have crushed. He actually lost in Bath, Portland, East Bangor and Walnutport.

*  He needed to work the open space townships. Parsons is perhaps Council's biggest open space advocate and chairs its committee. He has successfully pushed for projects in Lower Mount Bethel, Upper Mount Bethel, Moore, Plainfield and Bushkill. I am sure he could have attracted some of these environmentalists.

*  The Gracedale crowd was completely MIA. Parsons failed to win in Upper Nazareth, where Gracedale is located. Four years ago, he won there convincingly.

Northern Tier District Results
Community Parsons Dietz Murray Scomillio Barron Phillips
Bangor 317 220 247 295 255 245 
Bath 108 149  115  150  109  153 
Chapman 11 18  20  13  15
E Bangor  56  61  38  75  42  68 
Lehigh  517  782  575  826  562  791 
L Mt Bethel  183  177  226  162  166  182 
Moore  616  898  662  908  649  886 
Pen Argyl  267  261  204  310  194  275 
Portland 34  41  24  48  22  47 
Roseto  134  114  105  175  121  114 
U Mt Bethel  431  574  395  617  353  596 
U Nazareth  368  380  370  398  359  379 
Walnutport  84  91  86  94  84  90 
Washngtn  328  304  268  364  269  334 
Wind Gap  191  157  160 170  146  150 
Bushkill  363  686  410  640  362  654 
Plainfield  522  593  436  652  437  575 
 Total 4530  5506  4330  5904  4143  5554 

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

This work thing is overplayed and overused. Look at the numbers. Barring any big single issue or scandal up there those folks are Republican lever pullers. It has been that way for years. Everyone knew Ron Angle lost four years ago and Parsons didn't win. Angle was the issue. This year there was no big issue to upset the Republican stronghold.

I say bravo to the teabggers, since now they have given Brown a veto proof Republican county council that can pass even more tax increases.

Anonymous said...

It is quite obvious that ticket splitting was the norm in this election. The proof is in the comparison to votes that Scomillio received along side running mate Phillips. The same holds true for the Democratic candidates Murray and the Controller Barron. Both PHillips and Barron got fewer votes than heir Respective party judges candidates.
Once again, hard work pays off. Murray was the hardest working Judge candidate that I ever saw and that goes back a long way. The Labor movement was more interested in the Supreme Court races than our local races. Shame on them.

Anonymous said...

I agree the "workhorse" label is bull. Angle beat himself in the last election. They took Parsons off the bar stool at Detzi's and he got elected and has the brain thought that he is so great that he beat Angle? Angle beat Angle- the republicans had enough and wanted him ANGLE OUT! Bozo could of ran and won!
Fast forward four years later- Angle enjoying his "Diplomat Status" on the Bangor School Board and "retired" and actually being a great benefit to the BASD by his idea that saved them over 100G! and guess what? The republicans had a good candidate that ran and beat PARSONS EASILY. Parsons could have run a hard fought election and still would have lost. He isn't as well liked as he thinks he is obviously when a NOBODY like Deitz can show up and pound him at the polls like he did-
Parsons is not the local favorite son as you wish to believe and the polls showed that. He was just a tool used four years ago to send Ron into retirement diplomat status and actually did Ron Angle a favor.

Anonymous said...

"Ron into retirement diplomat status"

Now that is funny!

Bernie O'Hare said...

Angle's idea, I believe, saved BASD $344,000.

Anonymous said...

"Angle's idea, I believe, saved BASD $344,000."

Now that is funnier!

Bernie O'Hare said...

Haters are gonna' hate.

Anonymous said...

Everybody knows the Gracedale goons beat Angle. If Parsons got his fat ass off the bar stool at Detzis and actually campaigned- he had a chance. Same result when Scavello crushed him in last years senate race- Mario knocked on doors, Parsons sat at the bar- this was his second resounding defeat.

Anonymous said...

Scavello did't beat Parsons. He beat Mark Aurand 60%-40%. Parsons never made it out of the primary, losing with only about 36%.

Anonymous said...

3:22 AM . again , what is with you and the anti gay terminology, consistently used by you, early in the morning, when angry. you need serious help.

Bernie O'Hare said...

He is a self-hating gay. He has done it many times.

Anonymous said...

People mainly teabaggers who go on about hating tax and spend Democrats are the ones that need help. They go on and on about taxes yet keep lever pulling for the Republicans that vote to raise their taxes.

Explain that and don't worry so much about the name you folks picked for yourselves. By the way how and why do you think it is anti-gay terminology? You have an inside track on that you swinger you?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Annonymous at 1:12. Don't be too quick to describe Parsons loss as "unfortunate(ly)". Parsons is not a hard worker. Except maybe at barstool warming. He has said .."I don't do doors"...If you are in a real race and really want to win, you do doors. Matt Dietz may very well make people ask, who's Parsons?

Bernie O'Hare said...

He is not a campaigner, but is Council's hardest working member. Your anonymous personal attack isunnecessary. Scott has paid the price for his campaign style.

Anonymous said...

No, he paid the price for living in District four and being a Democrat.