If state Rep. Richard F. Roy, D-Milford, is successful in his bid for city clerk, aldermanic Chairman Ben Blake, D-5, has been targeted by party leaders to run for the open seat.
Roy, D-119, said if he defeats his Republican challenger, Linda Stock, to succeed longtime City Clerk Alan Jepson, who is retiring in November, then he would resign his state House seat.
Jepson, a Democrat, has held the position since 1987. Democratic Party Chairman Richard Smith said several people have expressed interest in running for Roy’s seat. Smith said he’d like to see Blake “step up” if the seat becomes available.
“I have all the confidence in the world in (Blake) and know he would make an exceptional state legislator,” Smith said.
A special election would be called in the fall if Roy’s seat is vacated. The position would also be up in the regular 2010 election.
Blake said right now he’s focused on his seat on the Board of Aldermen, which is up for election in November.
However, Blake said he would consider running for state representative.
“It would be something I would consider, but it’s not a focus right now,” he said.
Blake said following Roy would be a difficult task, noting Roy’s seniority as a 17-year veteran of the General Assembly and his chairmanship of the Environment Committee.
Blake will seek his fourth term on the aldermanic board. He became chairman in 2007, when Democrats took control of the board for the first time in 24 years.
The 119th District includes the Woodmont and Morningside sections and areas directly north of downtown.
As for a Republican seeking to capture the seat, Republican Town Chairman Tom Jagodinski said the party would have no trouble coming up with candidates.
“Obviously, open seats are good for us as there is a reasonable chance for us to take those seats,” he said.
Planning and Zoning Board member Kevin Liddy, a Republican, ran unsuccessfully against Roy in 2006 and 2008.
Roy has said if victorious he will miss being a state representative, but is looking forward to the chance to work more directly with the public as city clerk.
Roy defeated PZB Vice Chairwoman Kim Rose at the Democrats’ nominating convention for the city clerk post.
Rose has said she will not run against Roy in a primary.
Original Story Chris Rhatigan