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Dover Post
  • GOP close to replacing Poliquin in Democratically held 31st district race

  • The Kent County Republican Committee expects to name a Republican nominee for the Delaware House of Representatives 31st District race that would replace former GOP candidate Ron Poliquin.


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  • The Kent County Republican Committee expects to name a Republican nominee for the Delaware House of Representatives 31st District race that would replace former GOP candidate Ron Poliquin.
    Poliquin ended his campaign against Democratic incumbent State Rep. Darryl Scott last week to focus on his family after the Supreme Court of Delaware suspended his ability to practice law for six months due to prior problems with clients.
    Several individuals had expressed an interest in the Republican nomination for the 31st, Kent County Republican Committee Chairman Hans Reigle said.
    “I think that we will have a strong replacement candidate late this week,” ‘Reigle said.
    That would come more than a week before the state’s deadline for major party candidates to nominate candidates.
    The 31st District is 49 percent Democrat, 26 percent Republican and 24 percent Independent, according to election demographic figures. But Republicans still think they can win this seat held by Republican Nancy Wagner just four years ago, Reigle said.
    “We have  a tough race head of us,” he said. “But winning this race is not impossible. We’ve got a great candidate who’s just tying up some loose ends before they announce.
    “I think everyone’s going to be real happy and excited about this candidate and he’s going to help us win back the 31st,” he said.
    In the meantime, Scott said he had taken nothing for granted despite the recent setback for Republicans with Poliquin’s withdrawal.
    “Any time a candidate withdraws, it puts their party at a disadvantage,” Scott said. “It is still up to those running for office to reach out to voters and ask for their support on Election Day. So ultimately, regardless of whether or not my opponent withdrew, it is still my goal to get as many voters out to vote on election day and to ask for their vote to allow me to continue to represent them.”
    That is exactly what Kent County Democratic Chairwoman Abby L. Betts expects from Scott and all candidates, for that matter.
    “As any party chairman will tell you it is a real challenge to have a candidate withdraw from the race,” Betts said. “Regardless of whether there is an opponent in the race or not, it is my expectation that every candidate is out there campaigning, meeting voters, discussing issues, and asking voters to support them on Election Day.
    Page 2 of 2 - “Even without an opponent, it is essential to bring as many voters supporting our candidates to the polls on Nov. 6 as possible,” she added.
    Scott said he would continue to build on the relationships he has cultivated since taking office. And he believed Democratic Party values would ultimately resonate with the majority of residents and voters in the 31st district. That means fighting for good paying jobs, quality education for children, quality of life and affordable healthcare, he said.
    As for Poliquin, Reigle said had spoken with him at length and told him he agreed with his decision to focus on his family and righting his career.
    “I respect Ron and know that he will take all necessary steps to make himself healthy and well,“ he said.
    Poliquin, for his part, said there was still plenty of time for the right Republican to win the 31st District.
    “Dover voters are longing for an independent voice to stand up to the ‘go along to get along’ attitude of the current crop of politicians,” he said. “If the right candidate can bring a message of private sector job creation and putting an end to government corruption and cronyism, the seat is definitely obtainable.”
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