Burlington chooses Progressive Ward 3 candidate who said ‘abolish the police’

Michael Bielawski/TNR

LEFT WINS: Progressive candidate Joe Magee (center) will continue the 40-year-long tradition of a Progressive occupying the Ward 3 Burlington City Council seat.

BURLINGTON, Vt. — Burlington residents in Tuesday’s city council special election chose Progressive Joe Magee, a candidate who has called for abolishing the police and eliminating systemic racism from society.

Magee got 475 votes, or 47 percent of the vote. Democrat Owen Milne, executive director of the Lake Champlain Community Sailing Center, received 397 votes, or nearly 40 percent of total votes cast. Republican Christopher-Aaron Felker got 136 votes, or about 13 percent.


The Ward 3 seat has been in Progressive Party control for four decades, and will remain so for another term.

Magee, a former campaign staffer for Sen. Bernie Sanders, labels himself as “queer,” “socialist,” and “abolitionist” on his Twitter page. Among other things, the newest city council member calls for protecting residents against evictions, bringing back mask mandates, exposing capitalism, and abolishing the police.

Magee’s “abolish the police” tweet from April 23 did little to discourage Burlington residents from electing him instead of the pro-police candidate, Felker.

Magee retweeted that he wants Vermonters to wear masks to protect each other from the coronavirus, even as the virus continues to see few if any deaths for healthy and young people.

Magee calls for making relief programs from the federal government permanent, even as the employment market continues to see a shortage of job-seekers.

Milne had taken a a middle-ground on police policy. He said his plan was to merge social services with the police department so that at least for some non-violent scenarios, other professionals can address problems and allow armed officers to deal with only the most serious calls.

Felker told True North he will continue to speak out for conservative causes.

“No matter what, we’re going to keep moving forward and making sure that we proudly and unapologetically expose and represent conservative principals here in Burlington in a manner that is concise and polite,” he said.

Felker was the only candidate to explicitly support expanding the number of police officers to levels determined adequate for full-time, city-wide coverage.

Some voters told True North what issues mattered to them as they voted Tuesday.

“I think my biggest issue is wanting a candidate that is going to be the most independent, and independent-minded, and not beholden to a political party,” said Ward 3 resident Ben Luna. “I think a lot of the politics around here are controlled by either the Democrats or the Progressives, and I place a premium on independence.”

Rachel, who chose not to give her full name, thought Felker was a good candidate for city council.

“It seemed like he wanted to bring different opinions to the council … he also wanted to do stormwater infrastructure, and that was important to me,” she said.

Michael Bielawski is a reporter for True North. Send him news tips at bielawski82@yahoo.com and follow him on Twitter @TrueNorthMikeB.

Image courtesy of Michael Bielawski/TNR

11 thoughts on “Burlington chooses Progressive Ward 3 candidate who said ‘abolish the police’

  1. THIS is the La La land that Bernie envisioned, it is a disgusting legacy for him and an embarrassment to the GOOD citizens of Burlington.

  2. Wow, You have just made criminals very happy. Many more businesses will follow LL Bean because of the idiots who don’t want a police presence. You progressive gals should feel really secure walking home at night knowing that your attacker will not be sought after and will see you later. It’s your bed, sleep tight!

  3. Hope they’re happy with Mr. Magoo – Burlington will simply devolve into a cesspool and the rest of the State will have to keep supporting it as it attracts the criminal element.

  4. The Second Coming


    Turning and turning in the widening gyre
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.

    Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
    When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
    Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
    Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
    The darkness drops again; but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

  5. Oh man.. you people will regret this.. I cant believe after the sh_t show the progressives have created EVERYWHERE that anyone takes them seriously! This is an `embarrassment to my state. Burlington has become a hopeless freak show!

  6. What a joke, he’s just another agenda driven fool, I can’t wait until all hell breaks loose,
    and see what bed he’ll be hiding under…………..

    Don’t forget ward-three if you need a cop and can’t find one call your city councilor,
    they made the decision to ” not ” protect you !!!

  7. “Instead of asking what might happen when pandemic aid programs end, we should be bold enough to make them permanent.”

    Mr. Mcgee, who do you think is going to pay for this stuff ? And stop with the juvenile answer “the wealthy!). That money has already been claimed 4 or 5 times, by the Green New Deal, teacher’s unions, Medicare for All, ARPA, the American Family Plan, the Warren/Sanders capital gains tax “reform” proposals, Warren’ proposed wealth tax and myriad other progressive pipe dreams.

    There will not be any money left for your pet pipe dreams. So how will you pay for them ?

    • The Progressives not only want to release convicted criminals and distribute illegal aliens, they want to defund (if not eliminate) the police and disarm the law abiding citizens. And have taxpayers pay for their security details. That’s like having a procession of SUVs take you
      from your mansion to the airport to fly your private jet to Monaco for a conference on carbon dioxide reduction taxes.

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