Government

Brown Ousts NcNally in Democratic Primary

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Youngstown will have a new mayor next year, following Jamael Tito Brown’s defeat of incumbent John McNally in Tuesday’s Democratic primary.

Brown, a former 3rd Ward councilman who four years ago lost to McNally, defeated McNally, 52% to 47%, according to unofficial results from the Mahoning County Board of Elections. Brown received 4,323 votes to McNally’s 3,862.

A map on the board’s website showed McNally winning precincts on the West Side and in the Brownlee Woods area on the South Side, with Brown dominating precincts in the rest of the city.

“I want to thank the voters for believing in me. I will not let you down,” Brown told WKBN last night. “You will have leadership with vision, honesty and integrity.”

Brown made McNally’s February 2016 guilty plea to four misdemeanors in the Oakhill Renaissance Place corruption case, related to his time as a Mahoning County commissioner, a central pillar of his campaign.

Following a televised debate last month, the mayor said city residents he met with did not discuss the Oakhill case or his conviction.

“It’s certainly not the outcome we were looking for,” McNally said during a phone interview last night.

McNally, who will serve as mayor through the end of the year, said his campaign covered every ward of the city working door to door, sent mailers to the city’s Democratic voters and worked the phones yesterday to get the vote out.

“I’m not sure there’s anything I would do differently than what we did today,” he remarked.

McNally said it was “way too early” to say what’s in store once his term ends or whether he planned a return to politics. His priorities through the remainder of his term continue to be making the city safer, cleaner and more accountable. “I’m not really sure what the voters are looking for but they’ll have to figure out who they’re going to elect in November,” he said.

In November, Brown will face three candidates running as independents: Sean McKinney, who recently stepped down as building and grounds commissioner; Janet Tarpley, a former 6th Ward councilwoman; and Cecil Monroe, who has previously run for city office unsuccessfully.

Pictured above: Jamael Tito Brown and John McNally following a joint appearance last month.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.