Well into the evening on Tuesday, supporters of mayoral candidate Mark Schroeder hoped their guy had a chance to win. Vote totals seemed to take so long to come in. However, by the end of the night, it became clear their candidate had lost.
They cheered when he came into the Tewksbury Lodge on Ohio Street to say he had called Mayor Byron Brown to concede the election. Listening to Schroeder after that, it was clear he lost the election, but remained dedicated to the issues.
"We know that Buffalonians are grateful for downtown development and waterfront development, but the people in the neighborhoods are muttering, 'What about us?' and we gave them a plan," Schroeder said. "We also talked about safe streets. We also talked about hiring people with credentials."
Schroeder said he considers his votes a victory.
"We assembled a great young staff of believers. These are volunteers. This wasn't the obligatory thing. This wasn't city workers who had to go out and do something. These were believers in me because we had a message," he said. "We had a message for the people of Buffalo. We wanted to talk about neighborhoods where the people lived."
Because Schroeder is the city's chief fiscal officer and decides what his 10 CPAs will audit, the Mayor will be well aware the Comptroller is still around. Schroeder also made it clear he will continue to press his issues. He will be on the ballot in November as the Reform Party's mayoral candidate, but Schroeder said he is not sure yet how active he will continue to campaign.
The Schroeder campaign also issued a statement about "unethical or illegal behavior" it said had been witnessed on the part of the Brown campaign. It said:
- Signs went missing from polling locations and have been photographed in the garbage at a city facility.
- Brown literature had been left inside the polling booths.
- Brown employees were campaigning within 100 feet of polling locations.
- Gift boxes with Brown for Mayor logos were captured on video in the possession of poll workers at the Centennial polling location.
- At the Centennial polling location on High and Lemon Street, inspectors helped senior citizens read their ballot, but only directed voters to the Grant and Brown options.
- "The Byron Brown campaign violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act by sending a text message at 5:06 p.m. [Monday], encouraging voters to support Brown. The FCC has informed us that this is unlawful behavior."
- The St. Martin's Polling Location was not open until 6:20 p.m. and the Hennepin Center polling location was not open until 7:30 p.m.