Voters Choose CCA Majorities On Council, School Committee
Cambridge voters have reversed the usual outcome of the City's elections, and given candidates endorsed by the Cambridge Civic Association a majority on both the City Council and the School Committee.
The last time there were more CCA than "independent" city councillors was during the 1952-53 term. The School Committee majority is the CCA's first since 1964-65, when a CCA mayor, in his capacity as chairman of the committee, gave the "good government" association the balance of power there.
When the Election Commission finished counting council ballots late Saturday night, the following candidates had won election: Walter J. Sullivan (Ind.), Alfred E. Vellucci (Ind.), Thomas W, Danehy (Ind.), Edward A. Crane '35 (CCA), Barbara Ackermann (CCA), Daniel J. Clinton (Ind.), Robert Moncreiff (CCA), Thomas H. D. Mahoney (CCA), and Thomas Coates (CCA).
Elected School committeemen are: James F. Fitzgerald (Ind.), David Wylie (COA), Francis H. Duehay '55 (CCA), Joseph E. Maynard (Ind.), Donald A, Fantini (CCA), and Lorraine A, Butler (CCA).
One CCA endorsed candidate who failed to win was Harvard Ed School student Francis X. Hayes. Though Hayes ran fifth in the initial count, he failed to pick up strength as weaker candidates were eliminated, and their votes redistributed according to the City's Proportional Representation electoral system.
When Hayes was eliminated, however, the redistribution of his ballots pushed Mrs. Butler into sixth place in the School Committee standings, slightly ahead of independent John A. P. Good, who thus lost his bid for re-election to the committee.
Besides Good, one other incumbent City Councillor Daniel J. Hayes Jr. failed to win re-election. Mahoney, also an incumbent, retained his seat by a narrow margin of some 80 votes. "Well, this one was a cliffhanger," he said.
As observers began analyzing the election returns, they seemed to agree on only one thing: the turnabout-achieved by only narrow margins in both races-reflected the popularity of individual CCA-endorsed candidates rather than any major increase in the CCA's overall voting strength. "Each [of the CCA councillors] made it on his own; they didn't run as a team," said one veteran city politician.
Several of the CCA-endorsed candi-dates enjoyed substantial bases of support of their own outside the CCA strongholds among academic and middle-class voters, Coates, for example, polled well among his fellow blacks, while Fantini-whose brother unsuccessfully ran for School Committee in 1967 as an independent-received a large portion of his votes from Italian East Cambridge, where most CCA candidates do poorly.
Thus, it seemed that the new CCA majorities might not mean any drastic policy changes-at least not on the City Council, which during the past few years has generally not split along CCA-independent lines.
The School Committee, however, has divided along such lines on several important votes in the past years. When the committee began looking for a new superintendent, for example, the independents ultimately defeated a proposal-supported by the CCA members-to have a panel of Ed School deans search for a man to fill the job.
Yesterday, most observers were of the opinion that the biggest changes produced by the CCA majorities would come on the School Committee, but no one was willing to predict just what changes.