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Incumbents Celebrate Town Council Re-Election

Wherheim, Creighton will go "right back to work" following Tuesday's victory.

Following their over Democratic challengers Teresa Haft and Howard Knispel, Republican Incumbents Robert Creighton and Edward Wehrheim delivered their victory speeches at Tuesday night to a crowd at the Elks Lodge in Smithtown.

"I feel very good about tonight. I feel very happy. I’m very gratified by the results," said Creighton, on securing his second term on the town board.

Wehrheim, while celebrating his third-term election, said it would be business as usual come Wednesday.

“Of course I am pleased with the outcome," he said. "Starting tomorrow morning, we will continue to right back to work and continue to make Smithtown a great place to live.”

Despite being the incumbent, Wehrheim said he fought for the win.

"I was a little bit surprised the campaign was a little bit benign. I never took anything for granted and went out and did the work I had to."

At the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers in Hauppauge, where the Democrats were camped out Tuesday night, Knispel expressed dissappointment at voters who failed to stray from party lines.

"It's frustrating when you're running in a town of strict party lines," he said.
"You are not going to change people's minds if they are not informed because they will vote strictly in party lines."

The Democrat touched on the biggest challenge he faced on the campaign trail.

"There's a certain experience I had when I was out campaigning,  talking to Republicans in the town. I got a very negative response. It's a heavily Republican town and its difficult for someone different to get into that kind of environment."

When asked which issues he'd like to see tackled by the town council, Knispel said the Kings Park Psychiatric Center and Main Street safety were at the top of his lsit.

"I hope they take safety on Main Street more seriously than painting a few new lines," he said.

Over all, Knispel's view of the future of town government looked bleak Tuesday.

"My knowledge of town government is they will do as little possible as they have little pressure on them to do anything," he said. "They won't do anything until someone holds them responsible."

Haft, on the other hand, had an optimistic attitude regarding her first poliiticcal campaign Tuesday night, and hinted that it might not be her last. 

"It's inspiring because of all the people you meet—they are inspiring to me," she said.

"Smithtown is a very heavily Republican area, but it's been an inspiring journey. I've learned a lot and I've grown a lot in the process. This is only the beginning."

Despite the loss, Haft promised to stay involved in Town of Smithtown politics.

Additional reporting by Hauppauge Patch Editor Sara-Megan Walsh and Kings Park Patch Editor Jennifer Sloat.

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