Dearborn Elections 2012: Salamey Wins Judge Seat; Woronchak, Darany Re-Elected

The results are in for Dearborn in the 2012 general election.

Update, 1:15 a.m. Wednesday

All precincts have been counted in Dearborn. Sam Salamey will serve as judge in the 19th District Court, replacing Chief Judge Richard Wygonik.

All other local incumbents kept their seats, including 15th District Rep. George Darany, Wayne County Commissioner Gary Woronchak, and Dearborn Public Schools Board of Education Trustees Aimee Blackburn and Mary Lane. 

Update, 10:30 p.m.

With 70 percent of Dearborn's precincts counted, Sam Salamey is leading with 59 percent of the vote in the 19th District Court race.

Both Salamey and Wygonik had been out at the polls all day, and both were awaiting local and national results at their respective election parties in west Dearborn—Salamey at LaPita; Wygonik at Park Place.

Update, 8:01 p.m.

The polls have closed. Check back here on Dearborn Patch throughout the night for the latest news and results.

Update, 7:30 p.m.

The after dinner scene at the polls was a mixed bag in Dearborn. On the east side the city, precints saw a late surge of voters; on the west side, campaigners started packing up with voters just trickling in by 7:00 p.m.

Dearborn City Hall was at 401 ballots case by 5:45 p.m. A poll worker said that the line or 20 or so residents waiting to vote was a steady number.

"Since about 4 p.m. it's been pretty heavy," she said.

At Salina Elementary around 6 p.m, poll workers were scrambling to check in a long line of voters in Precincts 1 and 2.

Lori Grajek, a GOP poll challenger there to check for voting issues, said that it had been a steady stream of people all day.

"I'm just really worried about the election," Grajek said of her reasons for volunteering her time. "I wanted to get involved."

The precincts were at over 800 ballots total cast by that point.

Grajek said that issues with the laptops had slowed the process down, as some voters looking to check in weren't coming up in the digital registry. Poll workers, she said, were forced to call the Dearborn clerk's office to double-check some voters' proof of registration.

ACCESS provided extra tables, partitions and pens to allow more people to vote at once.

The scene was similar at McDonald Elementary, where Precincts 1 and 2 saw 616 and 567 voters as of 6:30 p.m. A turnout greater than 50 percent was expected for the area of around 2,600 residents.

And though the lines were nonexistant after 7 p.m., Snow Elementary saw perhaps the biggest turnout of the day, with 743 ballots cast at Precinct 25 and 755 at Precinct 26.

Update, 2 p.m.

At the Dearborn Public Schools Administrative Services Center, where Precinct 27 votes, there was no wait for voters around noon. However, precinct workers told Patch that "there were lines this morning and there will be lines this afternoon."

Precinct 27 had 357 voters by noon.

Canvassers for 19th District Court judicial candidates Sam Salamey and Richard Wygonik handed out literature at the door, as did a supporter of Aimee Blackburn and Mary Lane's reelection to the Dearborn Board of Education.

Alex Gontarski, there on behalf of the school board, said she had voted around 11:30 a.m. at Snow Elementary. At that time, they were nearing voter No. 400.

Wygonik supporter Joe Terry said he was happy to hear that the numbers were high.

"It's good to see the turnout," he said. "This is an important election."

Over at Woodworth Middle School, workers for Precincts 15 and 16 were scrambling to keep lines short by adding extra voting partitions in the school's gymnasium.

"We ran out of pens, we ran out of seats," one poll worker reported.

A total of 222 people had voted as of 1 p.m.

Outside, canvassers for the Arab American Political Action Committee and Sam Salamey for judge tried to stay warm while urging voters to take their literature.

 Brothers Yousef and Ahmed Bahalwan, who represented AAPAC, as well as Sam Salamey canvasser Dena Bazzi, are all 15. Only fellow canvasser Soha Elsayed, 21, was able to cast a ballot in the 2012 elections.

Update 1:45 p.m.

U.S. Rep John Dingell (D-15th District) paid a visit to Yack Arena in Wyandotte. It was one of a number of campaign stops for Dingell on Election Day, who also visited First Presbyterian Church in Dearborn Tuesday morning.

Dingell will host an election party in Taylor Tuesday night.

Dingell is running against GOP challenger Cynthia Kallgren for a seat in the newly drawn 12th District. He is seeking his 30th term.

Update, 1:30 p.m.

Turnout was high at several Dearborn precincts visited so far today by Patch.

Lindbergh Elementary continued to see some of the longest lines in the city, according to voters, with the wait for Precinct 36 around an hour long heading toward midday. One voter said she stood in line for a half hour Tuesday morning before leaving and coming back at 11. Half an hour later, she still had a ways to go to make it to the polls.

Lindbergh polling officials said they were at voter No. 217 for Precinct 36 at 11:30 a.m. With no available seats, voters filled out their ballots in folding chairs lining the wall of the school's gymnasium.

Update, 10 a.m.

The lines at most polls in Dearborn were long all morning—with some voters reporting a wait time of up to an hour.

Voters' cars lined the streets and slowed traffic near Lindbergh and Haigh elementary schools, while the parking lots at and across the street from City Hall were both full around 9 a.m.

Dearborn Patch readers on Facebook said an hour wait time was common, and that some precincts had already set up extra partitions for voters.

Resident Cynthia Alvarado said she voted absentee last week.

"I'm out of town, but was glad to avoid the lines," she said. "Last presidential election it took me about an hour to vote."

Update, 9:30 a.m.

If you're looking for a snack today, check out Tim Hortons, which is giving away free donuts with the purchase of a beverage in honor of Election Day. Those "I Voted" stickers are pretty snazzy, but a free donut is pretty sweet, too.


Dearborn voters will cast their ballots Tuesday for a handful of local elections, in addition to voting for the next president and congressional leaders.

The most contentious local race is for an open seat on the bench of the city's 19th District Court. Incumbent Chief Judge Richard Wygonik will face attorney and court magistrate Sam Salamey for that position.

Also on Dearborn's ballot will be races for the 15th District of the State House of Representatives, the 13th District of the Wayne County Commission, and the Dearborn Public Schools Board of Education.

Voter turnout in Dearborn—as well as statewide—is expected to be high for the 2012 general election. Dearborn City Clerk Kathy Buda said she also anticipates a record number of absentee ballots, as residents attempt to avoid long lines at the polls Tuesday.

If you haven't voted yet, click on the PDF attached to the article to study a sample ballot before you go to the polls. Or, find your sample ballot with help from Publius.org.

Bookmark this webpage and come back throughout the day for more election news. Then, return at 8 p.m. when we'll be reporting Dearborn's election results live.

Connect with Dearborn Patch on Facebook and Twitter.


With 58 of 58 precincts reporting

19th District Court Judge
Results Sam Salamey
18,150 Richard Wygonik  14,020


Dearborn Board of Education
Results Aimee Blackburn
Mary Lane 15,678
Mary K. Petlichkoff 12,863


Wayne County Commissioner, 13th District
Results Gary Woronchak, Democrat
J. Scott Saionz, Republican


State Representative, 15th District Results George T. Darany, Democrat 26,465
Priscilla Parness, Republican


More Election News

KCM November 07, 2012 at 07:54 AM
Annie, it's tactile. The Mayor endorses Salamey today, then gets the majority Arabic vote/money for the election next year. O'Reilly is a terrible mayor and scum. We need someone that can offer development of our half empty downtown and draw in new families. Why not have new restaraunts like Five Guys, Chipotle or a Brewery. Instead, we get panera cares, dollar tree and Goodwill. Anybody but O'Reilly.
Kathleen O'Neill November 07, 2012 at 12:26 PM
Our computer kept going down, earlier my daughter wasn't able to vote and then it complete shut down.
Donna Hay November 07, 2012 at 12:39 PM
Darn good thing we have you Jessica - As of 7:38 AM the results still have not been posted on the 'city channel' - what the hell is going on??? You stayed awake and we thank you for that!!!!!
Sammi Fatibu November 07, 2012 at 03:05 PM
Salamey would have won without the Big Fellas help, but he wanted to count on Salamey's help when the Big Guy runs.
R. EALLY November 08, 2012 at 02:41 PM
Thank God Wygonik is gone... he was a bought out judge..time for some fresh blood!


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