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November 8, 2002

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10 - CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, Nov. 8 - Nov. 14, 2002 14th District Continued from page 9 but we came together. I was a lit- tle naive when we started," he said, noting he was new to poli- tics. "I was very naive about how much work goes into a campaign. We learned a lot and really got to work." Schwartzkopf,.a resident of the Cape Region for 35 years, ran a campaign emphasizing addressing unchecked growth and transporta- tion problems, protecting the beaches and waterways and pro- moting public safety. However, throughout the cam- paign, Schwartzkopf also gained a contingency of voters in favor of controversial HB 99, legislation that would extend the protections offered by current Delaware an- tidiscrimination law by prohibit- ing discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. "Obviously, HB 99 is impor- tant. It was not so much my sup- port of the bill as it was his posi- tion that made it a polarizing is- sue," said Schwartzkopf. Meoli said he could not support the bill as written because it may place undue hardship on small business. On election night, Meoli and his family and friends gathered at the Hampton Inn Lewes-Re- hoboth to hear the results. The businessman owns the hotel and four local McDonald's restau- rants. While approximately 100 volunteers and supporters waited for the polls to close Meoli, his wife and core committee watched the Department of Elections web- site closely after the polls closed. He emerged from the boardroom, at 9 p.m., to thank his supporters and announce he had conceded the race to Schwartzkopf. "Life is full of wonderful mo- ments, and I have a so much to be thankful for," he said directing at- tention to his wife, children and parents. "Others are not so great, and this is one of those times." He said he was most disappoint- ed that the count was not as close as he had hoped. Schwartzkopf earned 4,530 votes; Meoli earned 3,932; and Libertarian Everett Wodiska earned 70 votes. "It is obvious to me that Pete took some Republican votes from us. That is regrettable," said Me- oil. "I suppose I am an easy tar- get. I have had a privileged life." When Meoli supporters began chanting "next time," the candi- date smiled graciously but said: "I am not sure about any next time. This hurts a little too much right now to think about a next time." In closing, Meoli said he wished Schwartzkopf well and had confi- dence he could do a good job. "I've known all along that the people in the 14th couldn't lose," said Meoli. Now that he has been elected, Schwartzkopf, who maintained command of Troop 7 during his campaign, will retire from the Delaware State Police after 25 years of service, before being sworn into office :in =January. As a Democrat, Schwartzkopf will be a member of the minority party. He was sorry to learn two incumbents and fellow Democrats - Shirley Price and John Schroeder - were defeated. "I was looking forward to work- ing with Shirley and John, learn- ing from their leadership and ex- perience. Sussex County lost two very good, dedicated representa- tives," he said. 'q'he Republicans really put in great effort to win in coastal Sussex, and they succeed- ed in the 37th, 38th and 41st. That makes this victory that much more special," he said. Schwartzkopf won at each of the seven polling places of the district. In his top legislative priorities, Schwartzkopf said it is time to start redistributing resources to the coastal regions of the state. "For years money went to New Castle County because that is where the population seemed to be. "Following the census, a whole new district was created here be- cause of the dramatic population shift. It is time to see the money come down here as well," he said. "I will do my best to serve this district and bring it home to you." zero points House seats Continued from page 1 I can say is that I'll work hard," said Booth. Although not returning for another term, Schroeder has forever left an imprint in Delaware politics. "Joe Booth has very big shoes to fill," said Sen. George Bunting, D-Bethany Beach. "We have thousands of acres of open space down here because John was in the right place, working on the Bond Bill Committee. His banking knowledge also helped with those decisions." Schroeder was instrumental behind passing House Bill 192, which established a $9 mil- lion appropriation each year to purchase open space. "I would like to thank everyone who has stood by me all these years; I loved it," said Schroeder. Fifty-seven votes sent Hocker past incumbent Rep. Shirley A. Price, D-Millville, in Hocker's first run for a House seat. His father held the seat in the early 1960s. "Shirley and I were friends in school, and I hope we'll always be friends," Hocker said after the win. "In fact, I hope all of us Democrats and Republicans in the House can work as a Sussex County team beginning in January. I'm a lifelong Republican who won on the Republican ticket, but now I'm a Sussex County representative and that's the way I'm approaching this job." Hocker, who built a small grocery store operation into one of the largest independently owned grocery stores on the Delmarva peninsula, said he is eager to get to work on state business. "The budget is the biggest issue we'll face when we open session," he said. 'Tve worked hard all my life, and I'm very conservative. If I see any waste up there in Dover, I'll vote to cut it. We don't need tax hikes; we need to spend less, control our money better. And [ think it might make sense to look at the rainy day fund. It's there for emergencies." Atldns, who entered the campaign in June saying he wanted to work on state issues, won the chance to do that as he outdistanced Democrat Don Ward for the 41st House District seat left open by retiring Rep. Charles P. West, D-Gumboro. Atldns said shortly before the election that he wanted to find solutions to balancing the stated budget. He also wants to press for more state attention to Sussex roads. In the 36th House District, incumbent George Carey, R-Slaughter Neck, emergedurmcathed from a hard-fought campaign waged by ::Democratic chal- lenger Doug Ingram of Lincoln. Carey, who has held the seat since 1984, is rising in House seniority and expects to be named to some influential committee leadership positions in the House. Carey said he knows the Clean Indoor Air Act will be revisited. "The no,smoking law goes into effect Nov. 27. By Jan. 27, we should know how it's going and what, if anything, needs to be done to fix it. If there are problems, we'll revisit it and fix them." In a postelection new release from state Republican headquarters, Moore said: "I could not be more proud of all our candidates. We had strong candidates who ran tough, issues-oriented campaigns centered around economic growth, improving schools and addressing growth issues. Our message clearly resonated with the voters. This is the fn'st time either political party has held a 29-12 majority in the House. Let the word go out: this is a new, revi- talized, focused Republican Party." ! See photos on page 12 I To 00,11 My Supporters John Schroeder Paid For  Fricxs of John Schrocdcr