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Front Page » April 22, 2008 » Local News » County Democrats hold convention
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County Democrats hold convention

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Staff writer

Utah State Senator Mike Dmitrich, Bevan Wilson and Rep. Brad King visit prior to the convention. Emery County Commissioner Gary Kofford in the back.

The Emery County Democrats held their county convention April 17 at the Museum of the San Rafael. Party leaders and convention delegates came to hear speeches, vote for their candidates and have dinner. Registration of delegates began at 5:30 p.m. and county party secretary Kim Player made the call to convention at 6 p.m.

Carol Riddle read a moving tribute to those military personnel who are missing in action. The story was related to an extra table which had been set up with symbolic items on the table. The POW flag was placed on the chair in memoriam of the missing soldiers. Following the flag ceremony, Shala Pitchforth sang the National Anthem.

County party chairperson Gary Petty, introduced the candidates for Emery County Commissioner Seat C for which Donald J. Riddle and Laurie Pitchforth had filed. Each gave their speech and the delegates voted. Following the tally of votes, Pitchforth was named the Democrat candidate for that commission seat. She will be the candidate for Seat C on election day, Nov. 4.

During the count of votes, other candidates for Utah seats were on hand to campaign. Billie Gay Larson, candidate for National Committee Woman told of her experience and concern for women in America. She played an active role in the drive against school vouchers.

Billie Gay Larson, candidate for National Committee Woman.

Emery County Commissioner Gary Kofford introduced State Senator Mike Dmitrich, who is retiring this year. "Mike has represented Emery and Carbon counties very well over the years. He has done a great job," said Commissioner Kofford.

Sen. Dmitrich began his time with a thank you to Sheriff LaMar Guymon and his officers. "You and your officers did a remarkable job during the Crandall Canyon mine disaster," said Sen. Dmitrich. He went on to say this will be a great year for politics in Utah and this area. He expressed his appreciation to those who have allowed him to serve for the many years.

Sen. Dmitrich also expressed his opinion of how great a job Rep. Jim Matheson is doing for Utah and this area. He stated it is vital to elect Brad King to fill the seat he will be vacating in the Senate with his retirement. "We need him in that office. I have been the only rural Democrat there. We need someone to represent us and Brad King can be that person," said Sen. Dmitrich.

Rep. King was next to speak. He expressed his appreciation to those willing to serve as delegates. "They are our first line of defense for democracy in Utah," Rep. King said. He requested all Democrats to help him with this election to retain the seat in the Senate being vacated by Sen. Dmitrich. "It will take 100 percent of the Democrats and 20 percent of the Republicans to retain this representation for this area. We can't outspend the Republicans, but we can out work them," Rep. King stated.

Bob Springmeyer, Democrat candidate for governor told of his qualifications to be governor, "It is a tragedy that so many seniors in this state do not feel like their lives are worth living because they cannot afford health care and their medications. Too many people in this state cannot afford to get sick," Springmeyer said. "I vow to solve the abomination of Highway 6. When the Thistle slide occurred, Scott Matheson brought the power of government to solve that problem. I will bring the power of government to solve the problems with Highway 6. I need your support," he concluded.

Jean Welch Hill, a Carbon County native, the Democrat candidate for Utah State Attorney General.

Jean Welch Hill, a Carbon County native, is the Democrat candidate for State Attorney General. "The attorney general of Utah should give sound legal advice not political advice. We need to raise the bar for legislators and put ethics back in the state government. I will make sure the law is followed in Utah. Legislators cannot bend the laws for personal benefit," Hill said.

Grady McEvoy is running for the House of Representatives seat being vacated by Brad King. "I am a team player with the strong, independent spirit to make tough decisions. I will support our local needs. Listening is something I do well, and I will listen to people with something to say. I am ready and willing to meet the challenges," said McEvoy.

Carol Riddle read a statement from Christine Watkins who is running for the State Representative seat also. The statement told of her qualifications and eagerness to do the job. She is an advocate for educators for many years and has been active in many other functions. "I am tired of the games the Republicans are playing with self-serving politics," wrote Watkins.

Commissioner Kofford expressed his appreciation of long time Democrats such as Claude Scovill and Alice Conover. "These people are the salt of the earth," he said. "The current state administration has done everything it can to embarrass the state and destroy the economy, especially in this area and the energy fields. Whatever the Republicans do, they can find someone to sanction their actions. There is no better time than now to take back the State of Utah. Stay stalwart, help the candidates. Speak up, let your voice be heard. We live in a great state and we need more good things to happen in Emery County."

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