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O'Shaughnessy takes on Bentz for special House election


Eileen O’Shaughnessy-Coleman will lead the next chance for Delaware Republicans to end House Democrats’ super majority in the coming weeks.

A lifelong resident of the Newark area, O’Shaughnessy-Coleman has interned for former Congressman Mike Castle and longtime Speaker of the House Terry Spence.

If she is elected, it would break up the Democrats’ super majority in the House, meaning they could no longer push through tax or fee increases without Republican help.

But she paints herself as someone who won’t necessarily toe her party’s line on every issue.

“Politicians on both sides have taken that yes or no, right or wrong, black or white approach," said O'Shaughnessy-Coleman Life isn’t always like that and from my personal experiences with some people in the district, I can look at solutions for citizens.”

“I want to represent the district and I’m open to listening to all sides – especially those related to education and economy and labor and making educated decisions that serve everyone.”

She faces David Bentz, who has worked for four years as a legislative aid.

Voter registration totals in the 18th Representative District widely favor Democrats three to one according to state Department of Elections figures, though residents voted for Republican Terry Spence – the longest serving Speaker of the House in state history – from 1982 until he was unseated by Rep. Michael Barbieri (D) in 2008.

Barbieri announced his resignation earlier this month to head the state Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health.

The special election date to replace Rep. Michael Barbieri has not been set, but is expected to be sometime in mid-September.

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