CUDAHY/MEQUON/NEW BERLIN (WITI) — On Election Day Tuesday, April 2nd, three mayors up for re-election were ousted from office.
John Hohenfeldt was ousted as Cudahy’s mayor back in 2007, only to make a comeback six years later in a very tight race. Hohenfeldt was mayor from 2004 to 2007, and won re-election on Tuesday night.
Hohenfeldt beat incumbent Mayor Tony Day by just 38 votes. There were no scandals or major controversies. Hohenfeldt says in this difficult economy, voters want to see more results.
“Some it may be anti-incumbency and some of it may be the pressures of the job has become harder on elected officials and people are demanding more from heads of government,” Hohenfeldt said.
In Mequon, Dan Abendroth is leaving the Common Council after 27 years to become the city’s next mayor. Just 92 votes separated him and incumbent Curt Gielow.
Abendroth says concerns over dense development and land zoning played a role in this race — but admits the job is tough when you don’t want to raise taxes and the economy is slow.
“The economy is tough. Not a lot of growth. That affects the finances of the community,” Abendroth said.
Both mayors-elect say because their races were so close, they understand the importance of finding consensus and bringing the community together. Hohenfeldt says he understands the consequences if they don’t.
“I don’t look at it as I have to fight for my job everyday. I’m looking at it as I have to do a good job and work hard for residents in community and if I do that, do it successfully, then the chips will fall where they may,” Hohenfeldt said.
The third mayor to lose re-election Tuesday night was Jack Chiovatero of New Berlin. There were some ongoing issues in that race, and it ended up not being nearly as close.
Dave Ament, another alderman won with 58% of the vote.