McCarthy, Preston, Cummings Keep Their Normal Council Seats

Apr 6, 2021
Originally published on April 6, 2021 11:29 pm

It looks like that there won’t be any turnover on the Normal Town Council.

Incumbents Kevin McCarthy, Scott Preston, and Chemberly Cummings appear to have held onto their seats, according to unofficial results from Tuesday's election. Incumbent Mayor Chris Koos also won re-election.

Nine candidates competed for three open spots on the council. McCarthy (17.1%), Cummings (13.5%), and Preston (13.5%) were the top three vote-getters.

Two blocs of candidates emerged during the election: Those who want the town to play an active role in shaping the future, and those who advocate for a more minimal brand of government.

Voters appear to have rejected the more conservative bloc that included David Paul Blumenshine, Karl Sila, Steve Harsh, and Donna Toney.

The other bloc included McCarthy, Preston, and Cummings along with candidates A.J. Zimmerman and Brad McMillan.

McCarthy, who’s served on the council since 2012, said the election results show that voters are generally satisfied with the work the town’s been doing in recent years.

“I think that this is an indication that voters are happy with the progress and the growth -- particularly on partnerships and projects like Rivian,” he said.

Preston, who was first elected in 2013, agreed.

“I think (voters) see the economic growth -- both as we come out of the pandemic and into a post-COVID world, as well as the opportunity with all that Rivian is doing and will hopefully continue to do.”

Cummings, who’s served on the council since 2017, offered a more tempered assessment of the results.

“I see my victory as there’s still some hope for us. But there’s still a ways to go to bridge the gap,” she said, adding the tight race indicates there is work to be done to bring the community together. 

Cummings and Preston narrowly edged out Blumeshine (12.9%), winning by less than one percentage point. Blumenshine, a real estate agent and host of a local radio show, helped lead a trip to the Washington, D.C., protest that became the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

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