MAYVILLE - Incumbent County Judge John T. Ward and state Assemblyman Andy Goodell were the big winners Thursday in Chautauqua County, receiving additional third-party nominations for November's general election
Ward, the Ashville Republican seeking his third 10-year term behind the bench, swept attorney William F. Coughlin in the primary election. Coughlin, a Democratic legislator out of Fredonia, is the former county assistant district attorney and public defender.
"I just want to thank everyone who has worked on my behalf," Ward said late Thursday.
"Having those two additional party lines is important, but I still have an election to win and I'm not going to hold back now. I love my job."
For the Independence Party nomination, Ward received almost 60 percent of the votes, according to unofficial results by the county Board of Elections.
"He worked hard to get it," said Thom Shagla, county Independence Party chairman, of Ward's nomination. "The people have decided, and they think he will be the standard bearer for the Independence Party."
He added: "If Coughlin wins I think he will do some great things, as well. I'm glad the people made the decision because I think both candidates have some good qualities."
As for the Conservative Party nomination, Ward's victory was a little easier, receiving 80 percent of the votes. Going into the election, the incumbent judge had received the full-backing of the county Conservative Party.
"We have never seen anything like this," said Anna Wilcox, Conservative Party chairwoman, of Ward's overwhelming victory. "He crushed Coughlin and I'm ecstatic. Ward will uphold the conservative values, which is why we endorsed him."
In other races, state Assemblyman Andy Goodell, R-Chautauqua County, received the Independence Party nomination, defeating former legislator Rudy Mueller, a Lakewood Democrat.
"A lot of people have helped me and I appreciate the support," Goodell said. "I enjoy serving the people of Chautauqua County and I hope to continue serving them."
Goodell, who is completing his first term in the 150th Assembly District, won 57 percent of the votes for the nomination.
According to Norm Green, county Democratic election commissioner, voter turnout was low.
"It was really to me what I expected," Green said. "It was low."