Thursday, June 13, 2013


Come January 1, 2014 there will be Mary Cirelli (to borrow the Richard M. Nixon phrase) "to kick around."

Her last great political fight may have been to keep Kim Perez from becoming Canton city treasurer.

Cirelli told the Stark County Political Report that she has known all along that she could have easily retained her seat as councilwoman-at-large in the Hall of Fame City.

However, she simply could not sit by and let Kim Perez waltz in to the treasurer's office without having a stiff fight.

Apparently, she did not consider Kelly Zachary to be capable of putting up a fight on her own to keep Perez on the political sidelines having been put there by Republican Alan Harold in the November, 2010 election.

As it turned out, Cirelli surprised us all who do political analysis (and from her perspective, not in a good way) in coming in third in the three person race.

While Cantonians may see Cirelli as a councilperson (one among a number), it seems that they do not see her as "the" person, as an executive, to be in charge of a government office.

That public perception of Cirelli is likely the primary reason  she came in third.

Her zeal to provide opposition to Perez was very costly to her.  She says she put some $13,000 of her own money into the race and, of course, she  necessarily lost her council seat by virtue of her treasury run.

Though only 41% of Cantonians wanted Perez to be Canton's treasurer, it appears that perhaps Zachary was the better bet to have prevented Perez's restoration to public office.

Zacharay only lost (in the sense of:  "unexpectedly" to most of us) to Perez by about 8% points which means that of the 26.51% of the total vote pulled by Cirelli, Zachary would have had to have gotten about 66% of Cirelli's 26.51% to have kept Perez from winning.

It seems to the SCPR that a good part of the respective Zachary/Cirelli vote was a ABKP (Anybody But Kim Perez) vote.  Perhaps enough to have swung the election against Perez, had the election been a two person race.

The SCPR thinks that Zachary had a better opportunity to have gotten enough of what The Report terms as the ABKP vote given her eight (8%) percentage point loss in the three way contest.

Mary Cirelli with her nearly 15% margin of loss to Perez had a much more difficult hill to climb in terms of getting the lion's share of Zachary's part of the ABKP.   She would have had to have gotten about 75% of it.

While the SCPR calls it the ABKP vote, in a two person race he likely would have ended up with a distinct minority of the vote (notwithstanding it largely being ABKP) simply because some of those voters could not stomach either Cirelli or Zachary no matter which of the two would match up against him in a two person race.

Of course, the above discourse is the stuff of political analysts.

The bottom line is that both Zachary and Cirelli are out and Perez is in.

 For Zachary life goes on as it did before as she only has served briefly as an elected official.

Cirelli is a different story.

She has almost been an institution in Canton.

She has been Ward 3 councilperson (in which she polled rather poorly, by the way, in the treasurer's race), councilwoman-at-large, state representative, and county commissioner.

Moreover, her bio shows an impressive record of overall community service:

The question becomes what is to come of Mary Cirelli come January 1, 2014?

Her answer?

(The SCPR's interpretation.)

People remaining in Canton government will wish she was still an insider rather than an outsider.

For if people thought she was an annoying, chronic questioner and generally an out-and-out pest as a government official; they have not seen nothing yet.

As a public official, she says she restrained herself somewhat in the interest of reciprocal respectful relationships.

But as a private citizen, it appears, she is going to be less beholden to decorum.

The SCPR does not expect her to go beyond the bounds of propriety.  However, Cirelli is likely to be heavily involved in Canton government as Citizen Cirelli and perhaps "a looser cannon."

She may be gone from council but she is not going to let her former fellows nor the administration forget her.

She says that if her health holds out (she is in her 70s), she can definitely see herself running for council-at-large in 2015.

Would it surprise anyone for Mary Cirelli to be Councilwoman-at-Large Cirelli come January 1, 2016?

As the title to this blog says:  Mary Cirelli may be politically bloodied, she is by no means bowed.

Mary Cirelli: "not done yet; not by far!"

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