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Barney joins race for Delaware's lone U.S House seat

Delaware Public Media

You can add another name to the crowded 2016 race for Delaware’s lone U.S. House seat.

Sean Barney announced Tuesday he is  joining a Democratic primary field that already includes State Sen. Bryan Townsend, State Rep. Bryon Short and former State Labor Secretary Lisa Blunt Rochester.

But Barney doesn’t see a competitive primary as a bad thing.

“I think it only strengthens our party," Barney told Delaware Public Media Tuesday. "We have important debate to be had.  I think we ought to all put out views forward and I think the voters will choose a string nominee.  And I’m confident that whoever the voters choose in the primary is going to prevail in the general election.”

Barney says he decided to jump in the race  after seeing reaction in the U.S. to the recent terrorist attacks in Paris. 

He says he’s worried about talk of putting troops on the ground again in Iraq without a well-defined plan.  He’s also concerned about the negative response to accepting Syrian refugees into the country.  He says it sends a poor message about America values – and it’s not good policy

"If we don’t do our part to handle the refugee crisis coming out of Syria, it’s going to destabilize our regional allies, it’s going to overwhelm Europe and make it difficult for them to be strong allies in this fight, and frankly, the refugee camps that are overflowing are ripe to be recruiting grounds for ISIS," said Barney.

Barney adds that he also plans to make the issue of economic inequality central to his campaign.

Barney was a Democratic candidate for state Treasurer in 2014, but lost to Republican Ken Simpler in the general election.

He and the others running seek to replace John Carney, who is giving up his Congressional seat to run for governor.

Former Wyoming mayor Hans Reigle has announced he’s running on the GOP side, while Rose Izzo has filed paperwork to run again after losing to Carney in 2014.

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.
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