Times staff report
Sheriff eyes return to private practice
LAKE COUNTY | Sheriff Rogelio "Roy" Dominguez, who backed mayoral primary winners George Pabey in East Chicago and Brian Snedecor in Hobart, said he didn't do so in hopes of getting return favors for future office.
That's because, he says, he wants to return to private law practice when his sheriff's term ends in 2010.
Dominguez, however, did not rule out a shot at the Lake County Democratic Party chairmanship, but he said he would defer his support for that role to Lake County Surveyor George Van Til, who also has expressed interest in that position.
Dominguez made his comments late Tuesday night while waiting for final vote tallies at the county government complex in Crown Point.
Sowing seeds of victory
PORTAGE | The Olga Velazquez campaign was in full bloom as voters went to the polls on Tuesday.
Campaign workers handed out packets of forget-me-not seeds on behalf of the Democratic mayoral candidate, with the slogan "Watch Portage bloom!"
Velazquez went on to defeat opponent Steve Charnetzky in the Democratic primary.
While the seeds take six to eight weeks to bloom after planting, Velazquez could find out her opponent in the general election much sooner. The Republicans have until the end of June to fill the ballot vacancy left by the death of Dave Highlands.
A bit too much turnout
PORTAGE | While a countywide turnout of 21.5 percent was fairly typical for a primary election in Porter County, at least one precinct in the city wasn't prepared for the number of voters who came out.
The polling place at Kyle Elementary School ran out of ballots and had to halt voting temporarily while more were retrieved. As a result, hours were extended at that polling location.
Pabey's victory party hoppin'
EAST CHICAGO | Latino dance music blasted from the speakers inside East Chicago's American Legion Allied Post 369 as a throng of hundreds gathered to cap off the weeks of intense door-to-door campaigning across the city. Robert Cantrell and his son John were spotted briefly at the party.
The crowd erupted in cheer and camera flashes when Mayor George Pabey, who won the Democratic nomination, entered by a side door and slowly made his way to front of the crowd, where a microphone awaited him.
And it would be a wait. Ten minutes went by as the crowd swarmed around Pabey with hugs and handshakes of congratulations as he struggled to make it to the stage. Once there, his first order of business at the podium was to thank God -- a greeting received by wild applause.
Pabey faces Republican challenger Arthur Santos in the general election. Pabey beat Santos three years earlier.
Dems watch polls from Andorra
SCHERERVILLE | Democrats in Schererville gathered at Andorra Restaurant, 1112 U.S. 41, to hear the results of Tuesday's primary.
Although the attention was on the two contested Schererville races, the room was abuzz with interest in other Lake County elections, particularly Crown Point, Dyer and East Chicago.