The longtime leader in New Castle County may face name recognition problems in southern Delaware.
As the leader of New Castle County government, Chris Coons has had plenty of exposure to residents in the state’s most populous county. But being New Castle County Executive doesn’t grant Coons exactly the same level of exposure downstate, especially in more Republican leaning Sussex County.
During his three county campaign announcement tour on Monday, Coons started his day in Sussex County on the Rehoboth Beach boardwalk. He says residents there and in Kent County should get used to seeing him. “We’re going to spend a lot of time on the ground here in Kent County and in Sussex County, but also, still being engaged and paying attention in New Castle County as well.”
Coons says he’s represented more than half of the state’s population of 800,000 for ten years. He says that experience will allow him to focus attention on reaching out to voters in Kent and Sussex, “And help them understand, the values I’ve applied, the tough decisions I’ve made, and how I’ve led local government over the last decade, and what I would do based on that experience if elected to the Senate for Delaware.”
In the 2008 election, President Obama won 62% of Delaware’s votes, but he lost in Sussex County to John McCain, 54% to 45%. And even though Obama won in Kent and New Castle County, the contest was also much closer in Kent County. In the central portion of the state, Obama got 54% of the vote to McCain’s 45%.