Based on being the top two vote getters yesterday, Lantigua with 5,725 votes and Rivera with 2,799 votes will face off in the November general election.
Voting got off to a slow start, but picked up considerably as the day went along. It eventually exceeded predictions of a 25 percent turnout on a crisp autumn-like day. The turnout was 32.6 percent of the city’s 36,882 registered voters.
At the Frost School in the more upscale Mount Vernon neighborhood, seven out of eight voters questioned late in the afternoon said they had cast ballots for Rivera. The eighth voter said he supported the mayor.
“He’s a veteran and he lives in my neighborhood,” said Sue Querze of Rivera.
Laura Alefantis, 35, an Andover business owner, said she voted for Rivera, who is an at-large member of the City Council.
“I like that he’s a veteran. He’s been very active in the community and that he’s been working hard to get his message out.
I think the city needs a change right now. The city isn’t cleaned up right now. It’s dirty. I feel that Dan would do a much better job,” she said.
Dave Moriarity, 56, a maintenance worker, said, “I’m just sick of Lantigua and wanted somebody other than him. I think Dan seemed like the best of other candidates. He’s a veteran and he’ll do a good job.”
Jamie Crespo, 46, a restaurant chef, said he voted for Lantigua. “He’s very good people and I like the job he’s done.”
Andrew Miller, 47, a plumber, said he voted for Rivera because “he’s got the experience of the council behind him, he knows city politics and he’s well-educated.”
Joanne Rivet, 61, retired after working more than 40 years at Verizon, said of Rivera: “He’s young, He’s got energy and he’s got a positive outlook for Lawrence, which we all need.. I think he can get the job done. In the past, he’s worked as a councilor with Lantigua and knows what it takes.”