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2024 gubernatorial candidate Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long discusses campaign, key issues

Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long announced her run for Governor of Delaware in September.
Quinn Kirkpatrick
Delaware Public Media
Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long announced her run for Governor of Delaware in September.

Races in the 2024 Elections are starting to come into focus and one that’s drawing significant attention in Delaware is the race for Governor.

Democratic Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long announced her bid for the office in September, but her campaign got off to a sluggish start after she paused fundraising to examine and amend past campaign finance reports.

This week, Delaware Public Media’s Tom Byrne sits down with Hall-Long to discuss that situation, how she’s positioning herself with voters, and where she stands on some key issues.

Delaware Public Media's Tom Byrne interviews Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long

Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long says her campaign is “moving forward” from its initial issue with past campaign finance reports.

Hall-Long’s campaign amended campaign finance reports last November to reflect an audit it conducted that showed reports between 2016 and 2022 misreported over $300,000 in loans as expenditures.

The campaign says the amended reports also reflect around $200,000 of these loans were repaid, meaning Hall-Long personally loaned the campaign about $101,000 that has not been repaid.

At the time, the campaign said the amended reports “fully convey the results of an internal audit,” but has not released the audit itself despite calls to do so from government transparency groups and others.

When asked about the releasing the audit by Delaware Public Media this week, Hall-Long referred people to amended finance reports.

“I’m not skirting this issue,” Hall-Long said. “I’m telling you straight up, have the public go to the searchable campaign finance review location in campaign finance reporting. I’m thrilled to tell you all the information is there.”

Hall-Long also denied reports by The News Journal/Delaware Online and WHYY that she lost staff last fall when she suspended fundraising to address it.

“I did not lose any staff. My entire staff in my official office remains the same. I had a person who helped me get launched with my announcement and that individual did transition to another opportunity. But those opportunities come. Anyone who’s run a campaign will tell you have different people who come and go.”

Hall-Long also says she never considered exiting the race over this issue.

“Never have I considered not being Delaware’s next governor,” said Hall-Long. “We identified the issue. We corrected it and we are moving on. It is publicly there. And, unlike my millionaire opponents, who are putting their own money in, I am not.”

Hall-Long faces New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer in the Democratic primary for Governor – with former DNREC Secretary and current National Wildlife Foundation CEO Collin O’Mara still considering a run in that primary.

Fundraising in that race shows Meyer with a distinct advantage, based on 2023 end of year campaign finance reports.

Meyer’s report indicates he has a little over $1.7 million cash on hand, with $580,000 of that total coming from loans he made to the campaign.

O’Mara’s report shows he had $870,000 on hand - mostly from a $750,000 loan to himself.

Hall-Long’s 2023 year-end report showed just over $688,000 cash on hand, including the $101,000 from the misreported loans that was not repaid.

Hall-Long says she does not believe last fall’s pause in fundraising to review and amend previous reports, puts her at a disadvantage.

“Money has never purchased Delaware voters. I can tell you straight up we had a little pause in fundraising that was a personal decision. That was not something forced. We did an internal person decision to review. We have done a great job in fundraising. In the last month of our campaign, we’ve brought in $171,000. [We’re] not self-funders,” said Hall-Long. “If you go in and look at others who have entered the race, they’ve loaned themselves over a half-million dollars each.”

Delaware Public Media’s interview with Lt. Governor Hall-Long also covered a variety of issues:

Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long on her approach to the state budget


Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long on the state of Delaware’s rising healthcare costs and state employee/retiree benefits


Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long on education


Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long on affordable housing

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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.