By Joe Pinchot
Herald Staff Writer
Hermitage Treasurer and Tax Collector Bernie Telega Harry easily outdistanced a challenger for the Democratic nomination Tuesday and now can set her sights on a Republican hopeful.
Unofficial results show Harry beating Jeff Valentino 812-389 with Harry garnering 67 percent of the vote.
Peggy Dunder was unopposed for the Republican nomination.
“The voters spoke,” Valentino said.
Voicemail messages left for Harry, 65, who is completing her second term, were not returned.
Making his first run at elected office, Valentino said he enjoyed the experience.
“It was really interesting; met a lot of good people,” said the 59-year-old former executive director of Buhl Community Recreation Center, Sharon.
Running more for himself than against Harry, Valentino said he had a good group of family members and friends working for him, and he was able to cover all the bases that he had hoped to with his campaign.
“I wouldn’t do anything different,” Valentino said.
He had good things to say about Harry and Dunder, whom he met for the first time Tuesday.
“Good for Bernie,” he said. “Hopefully, she’ll have a good race in the fall with Peggy.”
The campaign experience was so positive that Valentino said he might try for elective office again.
“You can never rule that out,” Valentino said.
A former county director of registration and elections, Valentino said he was disappointed with the 20.7-percent partisan turnout, particularly the turnout of young people.
“They didn’t come out to vote,” he said of younger voters. “We need to do something about that. I don’t know how we do it.”