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John Carney files for governor's race

Courtesy of the Carney campaign

After months of quiet fundraising, Congressman John Carney (D) officially officially added his name to the list of politicians running for governor.

Carney filed election paperwork around noon Monday, about 24 hours before the deadline to register as a candidate and months after first hinting at a bid for governor.


His campaign also launched a new website with political priorities, including the state’s economy, education, environment, healthcare, criminal justice and overhauling Delaware’s budget.


Lawmakers never touched recommendations by a state committee to tweak tax rates across the board to slow government’s reliance on volatile revenue sources, something Carney says needs to be looked at.


“We know that there’s a fiscal imbalance. We know that we need to do things differently and we know we can’t wait, even though the decision on that has been delayed and the first priority needs to be a revenue structure and framework that is, what I call pro-growth,” he said.


Ending the flow of bloodshed in Wilmington is also a top priority.


According to a News Journal database, 725 people have been shot in the city and 128 of them have died since 2011.


“It’s got to start with better cooperation – and real cooperation – between the governor and the mayor and law enforcement authorities. It has to be a combined effort,” Carney said.


Mayor Dennis Williams rejected $1.5 million in state money to bolster police patrols due to the General Assembly requiring the city report deployment data. Williams's tenure has drawn fierce criticism, sparking seven Democratic challengers in the upcoming primary.


Carney notes that any effective effort means targeting high-risk offenders for punishment, investing in rehabilitation and job training programs to prevent recidivism and boosting access to mental health care.


He plans on unveiling more detailed policy initiatives in the coming months.

It’s Carney’s second bid for the governor’s mansion. Gov. Jack Markell (D) upset him in a close primary race eight years ago, when then Lt. Governor Carney was seen as the heir-apparent to Ruth Ann Minner (D).


He later won the First State’s lone congressional representative seat in 2010 and has held it ever since.


In addition to his eight years as Lt. Governor, Carney also previously served as then governor Tom Carper’s finance secretary and deputy chief of staff.

It briefly appeared that Carney would face a primary opponent in September. Kevin Tinsley, a regional director for H&R Block, filed Monday shortly after Carney did, then withdrew Tuesday morning.

State Sen. Colin Bonini (R-Dover South) and former state trooper Lacey Lafferty are both seeking the Republican nomination.

Sean Goward, a Libertarian, will also be on the ballot in November.

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