Home City Democrats sweep At-Large City Council race; Patrick McGee unseated

Democrats sweep At-Large City Council race; Patrick McGee unseated

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Democrats Beth Clodfelter, Sarah Grace and Peter Kotses won the three contested At-Large City Council positions in a sweeping election for the Democratic Party in Athens, resulting in a body that will soon be controlled entirely by Democrats.

Six candidates ran for the At-Large positions. The three candidates who earned the most votes won the seats.

Clodfelter, who won 23.57% of the vote, will replace Independent Pat McGee, who earned 13.52% of the vote.

Clodfelter was found at The Pigskin Bar and Grille on election night with several other Democratic candidates where she expressed her utter shock toward the election results and exuded elation because of her victory.

“I don’t mean to sound arrogant on this but I truly think I worked harder than everybody else. I knocked on more doors, I got more yard signs, I had more letters to the editors in the paper than any other City Council candidate, and that matters,” she said.

McGee, on the other hand, expressed his disappointment with the election results in a phone call. The lame duck councilmember said he hopes the new body will adequately serve the needs of Athens residents.

“To be honest, I assumed I’d lose,” he said. “The Dems were really going hard this time, and I’m a supporter of Beth. I think she’ll be a really great councilperson. But again, I’m sorry to see the Dems are in control of things without any opposition — even if it’s just somebody voicing his concerns. But, that happens.”

Grace and Kotses won 17.71% and 17.69% of the votes, respectively.

Grace, who was also found at The Pigskin, attributed her willingness to listen to constituents and her ability to bring people together, rather than being divisive, as key to her campaign’s success.

“I am really honored and thrilled to retain my seat. Thank you to the voters of Athens for trusting me, and I will do my best to represent them over the next two years,” she said. 

Kotses said in a phone call he felt good about his re-election victory.

I think overall I’m just committed to the community,” he said. “I’m willing to take a stand when there’s a controversial vote — that could win you votes, (and) that could not win you votes — but, I think ultimately you have to be transparent, and you have to get people to understand what you’re trying to do, which is really to look out and help the community and help the citizens when they come to you.”

Independent candidates Ellie Hamrick and Chris Monday received 7.2% and 7% of the votes, respectively.

Both Hamrick and Monday did not respond to The New Political’s request for comment at time of publication.

Cole Behrens, Emily Zeiler, Emily Crebs, William Meyer and Ben Peters contributed to this report.

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