The Race for Governor

This week, New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer on Tuesday became the first notable candidate to launch a bid to succeed termed-limited Democratic Gov. John Carney, but he’ll likely face opposition in what would only be the second competitive Democratic primary for this office in four decades.

The News Journal article published over the weekend wrote that there was plenty of chatter that Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long could also join the contest to succeed Carney, though she doesn’t appear to have said anything publicly yet. Delaware Business Times also mentions Attorney General Kathy Jennings as an option, while Treasurer Colleen Davis recently didn’t rule out campaigns for governor, Senate, or House. Democrats have held this post since the 1992 election, and no serious Republicans have shown any interest in trying to break that streak this cycle.

Meyer, unlike those would-be rivals, is not a statewide elected official, though he leads a county that cast about 60% of the votes in last year’s party primary. He had $1 million available earlier this year for his new campaign.  He’ll likely need a whole lot more because, while Delaware is a small retail politics state, if you want to air TV ads, then you have to pay Philadelphia media market prices, since most of the state falls within that market.

The last competitive primary for Governor was in 2008 between Jack Markell and John Carney. Before that, it was in 1984 when former state Supreme Court Justice William Quillen defeated former Gov. Sherman Tribbitt, though he was rewarded in the general with a double-digit loss to Republican Mike Castle. (Quillen’s daughter, Tracey Carney, is Delaware’s current First Lady.)

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3 comments on “The Race for Governor

  1. Don’t you think it’s more likely that Colleen Davis runs for Lt Gov with BHL as the first all female administration. She’s campaigned on the pink wave bringing her into office and even last election used that in much of her rhetoric.

  2. Delaware Dem

    That is very possible. You will also have Trinidad Navarro and Sherry Dorsey Walker in the mix for the Lt. Governor race.

    • Mitch Crane

      Running for Lt. Governor would be a step down for State Treasurer Colleen Davis. Then State Treasurers Tom Carper and Jack Markell ran for Congress and Governor respectively from that office. She probably has her sites elsewhere. Insurance Commissioner Trinidad Navarro will be running for re-election next year. Sherry Dorsey Walker is running for Lt. Governor, as is Debbie Harrington.

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