DeKalb, Sycamore vote in two new mayors

Local residents experienced two nights of heated elections for mayor and president this year.

The November 2004 presidential election surprised few DeKalbians with the too-close-to-call results the next day.

As of early Nov. 3, three states were not officially called, including Iowa, Ohio and New Mexico. Before the election, Ohio was deemed as a key state that could swing Republican or Democrat.

Illinois’s 21 electoral votes were declared as Kerry’s early in the evening. But some DeKalb precincts showed some margins similar to national ones.

Paul Culhane, a political science professor who worked as an election official for DeKalb Precinct 35, found 79 percent of the precinct voted and Kerry won by 1 percent.

He found this amazing and said this slice of “middle-America” is usually a Republican stronghold.

DeKalb and Sycamore experienced the upseating of both mayors during the April 5 county election.

Former county board member Frank Van Buer defeated incumbent Greg Sparrow with 3,578 votes, a 59.51 percent majority.

There was a feeling of elation in the crowd as Van Buer made his acceptance speech to family, friends, supporters and some city council members, but Van Buer was somber as he realized the weight of the responsibility of the road ahead.

“We’ve got great years ahead of us working for the community,” Van Buer said. “I realize that there’s a lot of work ahead to get as many citizens as possible involved.”

The race for Sycamore mayor ended after incumbent John Swedberg called former Treasurer Ken Mundy to congratulate him when the results came in that night.

Mundy said he wants to instill confidence in Sycamore’s citizens, recognizing that 44 percent of voters sided with Swedberg, the incumbent. Mundy garnered just less than 49 percent.

“Beyond [building a strong tax base] and job [creation], my goal is to have people living and working in the area,” he said.