Delaware makes state treasurer’s office Simpler [video]

 (Nichelle Polston/WHYY)

(Nichelle Polston/WHYY)

It was the “longest job interview” ever said Republican candidate Ken Simpler, talking about his campaign to take over as the next Delaware State Treasurer.

Simpler was surrounded by family, friends and supporters who all packed the Avenue Inn in Rehoboth to watch election results roll in Tuesday night. Simpler took the lead in the race against Democratic candidate Sean Barney immediately after Sussex And Kent County polling districts reported its numbers. He never trailed.  New Castle County results came in last but unofficially sealed Simpler’s victory.  He had started his day in New Castle County and worked his way through polling places in Kent and Sussex County before ending his night in Rehoboth, a location that was not with the rest of the state party leaders.

“It is encouraging to me on the political side that Delaware still has the capacity even though it has taken two decades, to go pass party alignment and to someone who really is passionate about the job,” Simpler said.

Simpler added while many will look at the victory as a turning point in the Republican party or bounce off the bottom for Republicans, there is an important message for those people.

“I do want to caution us not to take this victory too broadly, Simpler said. Look at it as an opportunity to prove that when we are given the chance to govern, we do so responsibly and we do so in the best interest of all Delawareans.”

The first-time candidate also noted that he was once like most people who just showed up to the polls every two years to vote. Simpler said he didn’t engage in the political process much but had a change of heart.

“I really do feel that this is a system of self governance and it doesn’t run itself,” said Simpler who is excited about the new opportunity.

Democrats have dominated the State Treasurer’s office since the early 90’s. But the dynamic may have changed when incumbent Treasurer Chip Flowers withdrew from the primary race with less than a month to go before the September primary.

However Simpler, who ran on a platform of a “Finance Guy for the Finance Job” has a plan moving forward after winning over 53 percent of the vote in the treasurer’s race.

“It is possible to make Delaware first in finance because we did it before and we did it by working together,” Simpler said.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.