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Christensen Urges Democratic Party Unity

Nov. 11, 2006 — Delegate Donna M. Christensen urged local Democrats to follow the national lead and work together to elect John deJongh and Gregory Francis and organize a Democratic majority in the 27th Legislature.
"We in the Virgin Islands have a golden opportunity to capitalize on the Democratic sweep of the House and Senate to optimize the benefits for the people we are elected to serve," she said in a news release Saturday. "We must not lose it."
DeJongh and Francis face a runoff Nov. 21. Christensen was recently reelected to her sixth term with more than 63 percent of the vote, defeating Warren B. Mosler, an independent candidate.
While "senators and senators-elect are engaged in discussion and meetings, the elected Democrats must keep in mind that they ran on a party ticket," Christensen said, "and to abandon it now that they have used it to help secure their seats is to be disingenuous and dishonest with the people of the V.I."
Rumors of a 10-member Senate majority composed of seven ICM and independents joined by three Democrats have been widely reported by local media. (See "Rumors Abound as Senators Attend Closed-Door Meeting on St. Thomas.")
Although voters may not have elected the senators on the basis of party loyalty, the representatives themselves have an obligation to the party, Christensen said.
"I realize that everyone that voted for Democrats did not do so because of party, but those who ran claimed the ticket, which said they were running as part of a team," she said, adding that local Democrats "must first work to ensure that the DeJongh-Francis team is victorious in the runoff election."
"Our first order of business ought to be getting John and Greg elected," Christensen said. "The best and surest way to make that happen is with a united and strong Democratic Party."
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