, Salem, MA


May 24, 2013

Benton: Little re-election challenge for local mayors


The Famico and McGinn candidacies, like former state representative Tom Walsh’s bid for councilor-at-large in Peabody, may represent a welcome turn by voters toward those with a desire to lead rather than pander, and against those candidates who simply have an ax to grind.

The election results in Danvers earlier this month, which saw the defeat of a veteran selectman instrumental in the demise of a truly regional emergency dispatch center, may have been a harbinger of things to come. Perhaps people are beginning to realize they are best served by those who will get them the best bang for their tax dollars.

All of which may also explain why there are several currently serving in Beverly who could make credible runs for the mayor’s seat long occupied by Bill Scanlon.

During Scanlon’s tenure the Garden City has earned a reputation for the kind of political harmony that serves a community well. It helps make incumbent councilors like Paul Guanci, Wes Slate and Scott Houseman, as well as School Committee President Maria Decker, strong candidates should they choose to run.


Nelson Benton spent 40 years covering politics on the North Shore before retiring from The Salem News. Contact him at

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