Jaques is running against Vince Lofink in the heavily Democratic, 27th Rep District - a district where 57% of the voters picked John Kerry over George Bush. On his web-site he vows to make open, accountable government the cornerstone of his campaign. Jason:
For people who don't know can you describe the rough contours of 27th district, and give the political "lay of the land"? Earl Jaques: The 27th District is located mainly around the Glasgow area. Its a very odd shape to say the least. Old Baltimore Pike is the northern border, the Maryland state line is the western border, and reaching as far south as Denny Road. The eastern border runs partly along Route 72; then shifts along the Conrail tracks that crosses over Route 40 (at Fox Run); then makes a turn to the west along Muddy Run Creek and finishes northward at Cooch's Bridge Road.
The 27th District has over 13,000 registered voters, and contains parts of two different Senatorial Districts the 10th and the 12th. The residents are served by two public school systems: Appoquinimink and Christina, depending where in the District you live. I have personally lived in the 27th District for over 28 years. I've seen a lot of changes in this area since I first moved here - from having just one convenience store for milk and bread to three major shopping centers. Jason:
Was there one thing that made you decide to run? Earl Jaques: Not one specific thing. I have spent most of my adult life serving and helping others. As a full-time Delaware Guardsmen for over 36 years, I was involved in oil spills, riots, snow storms and other civilian aid events. I have worked with numerous community service organizations, such as, Special Olympics Delaware and the Glasgow Lions Club, which I am the current Vice-President. When my children were young, I also served as a director for the Canal Little League and was the "Umpire-In-Chief" for the entire Little League District 2. I see the State Representative position as just another opportunity to serve the citizens of Delaware. Nothing gives me greater pleasure then helping those in need. Jason:
Taking on an incumbent is tough - how is it going? Earl Jaques: Yes, running against any incumbent is always difficult. They have name recognition and can use the Community Transportation Fund to influence voters. However, as I walk the district I get a feeling that many voters are ready for a change. Like me, people in this district see that we need to improve our public school system, which ranks in the bottom 25% in the nation, and with 1 out of every 8 Delawareans are without health care, we need to look at creative and new concepts in this area, in the same way Maine, Wisconsin, Vermont and Massachusetts have.
So I am connecting with a lot of people and with the trust and support of the voters in the 27th District, I am prepared to be their advocate in the Delaware House of Representatives. Jason:
Thank you for your time. Earl Jaques: Not at all, thanks for your interest in my campaign.
This is the first in a new series of posts I'll be doing to better aqaint myself with the Democrats who have the guts and drive to take on entrenched Republican incumbents.