by Max Brantley
Patrick Kennedy has joined John Adams in endorsing Robbie Wills for the 2nd Congressional District nomination on the Democratic side. The other candidate in the race who didn't make the runoff, David Boling, endorsed vote-leader Joyce Elliott.
It's about electability, Kennedy says. He believes Wills will run stronger outside Pulaski County.
MEANWHILE: Over in the Republican 3rd district race, Doug Matayo joins Gunner Delay and Steve Lowry in backing Cecile Bledsoe.
Patrick Kennedy today announced his endorsement of Speaker Robbie Wills in the upcoming June 8th runoff election for the Democratic nomination in the 2nd Congressional District. Kennedy joins John Adams as the second former primary opponent to endorse Wills’ campaign since the May 18th primary. Kennedy and Adams each received over 5,000 votes in the five person contest.
Kennedy cited Wills’ effectiveness and proven record as a primary reason for gaining his support. “Even though some of our views differ, I've always appreciated the Speaker's willingness to work on both sides of the aisle while taking tough stands. Robbie demonstrated this quality when he took on big tobacco. By fostering bipartisan support, he was able to expand ARKids First, create a level one trauma system, and keep community health centers open.”
Speaker Robbie Wills said that Kennedy’s support would “energizing” to his campaign as it prepares for the June 8th run off. “Patrick brought energy, insight and passion to the first round of this primary. I’m counting on him bringing the same things to our campaign for the runoff and general elections. Patrick is committed to seeing Democrats win in November. My campaign has got the message, record and organization to do just that.”
Kennedy concluded his statement with a look towards the November election. “To keep this seat in November, we need someone who can win outside Pulaski County. In last Tuesday’s primary, Speaker Wills was able to win seven of the eight counties in the second Congressional District. Senator Elliott was only able to win one, Pulaski County. We all know Pulaski County will support the Democrat come November. But this is not enough. Please join me in supporting Speaker Robbie Wills for Congress in the Run Off Election on June 8th so we can keep this seat Democratic and move Arkansas forward.”