Peabody poll-watcher Mike Schulze, who finished third in a race for the same seat many years ago, expressed surprise at Toomey’s third-place showing.
“I saw Moutsoulas had a lot of signs. I know Toomey was doing a lot of work. But I didn’t see a lot of work from Serino. I’m surprised. ... It was a primary where everybody drags out their closest friends. Obviously, (Serino) dragged out enough to beat a person who held office before.”
Despite Moutsoulas’ first-place finish, Schulze thinks Serino can be very competitive in the November final.
“It’s doable,” he said, noting that the final election, including citywide races for councilor, brings out a larger and very different electorate.
Both Moutsoulas and Serino said they are open to the idea of a forum or debate.
The votes were counted quickly by City Clerk Tim Spanos and his staff. Serino and voter Jim Snow were the only visitors to the office.
“Every election I’m down here to get the results,” said Snow. Not part of any campaign, he said he voted for Moutsoulas. “I’ve known him over 30 years.”
Toomey served briefly as Ward 3 councilor before rising to win the at-large seat he held for 11 terms. He also ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 2002.
“Bill Toomey is one of the most intelligent guys I ever served with,” Moutsoulas said of his rival. “He’s also a very nice guy. And so is his wife, Betty.”
Staff writer Alan Burke can be reached at email@example.com.
Ward 3 City Council primary William Toomey 148 Thomas Serino 243 James Moutsoulas 315