BREAKING: Flowers Ends Reelection Bid, Will Not Resign, Moving to Mass. (UPDATEx2)

Filed in National by on August 15, 2014

Somebody get Deval Patrick on the phone. We have to warn him.

State Treasurer Chip Flowers has announced that he is ending his campaign for reelection and his moving to Massachusetts with his soon to be new wife once his term as Treasurer is over. He will not be resigning. This makes Sean Barney (D), the defacto Democratic nominee for Treasurer, and it likely ends all GOP designs on the office. I will leave it to others to describe the incredible press conference where these announcements were made, but needless to say another ommission of fact (or as we call them, lies) was revealed in that Chip did in fact attend that Patriots game, tickets to which were purchased on the state credit card. Like I have said before, I am tired, we are all tired, and now, Chip himself is tired. Best of luck, Mr. Flowers on your future endeavors in your new state.

From Treasurer Flowers’ twitter: Chip Flowers ‏@TreasFlowers 17m
Treasurer Flowers will address media at approximately 925am to make major announcement. #netde #delaware @Deldems #politicsde

Mark Eichmann ‏@MarkEichmann 1m
At the treasurers office in Dover awaiting what’s being called a long and detailed speech from @TreasFlowers #netde

Prior Story:

The News Journal is still silent on WDDE’s report last night that sources say Treasurer Chip Flowers could drop his reelection bid and resign the office as early as today. WDDE updated its story with a follow up getting reaction from stunned lawmakers from the right and left. The hypocritical Greg Lavelle did not disappoint:

“I’m speechless,” said Senate Minority Whip Greg Lavelle (R-Sharpley). “To resign the office and just kick all that into place is really an abdication of his responsibility.”

And if Flowers continued in office, which I expect him to do, Lavelle will be calling for his resignation. I guarantee it.

The State parties, represented by Charlie Copeland (R) and John Daniello (D), stayed silent. As did, wisely, the Barney campaign. Earlier in the day, Sher Valenzuela (R), the right wing nut job who is only running for the Treasurer’s office because Ken Simpler has gay friends (the horror!), called on Flowers to resign. WDDE did reach Representative Paul Baumbach of the 23rd RD.

Rep. Paul Baumbach (D-Newark) says if Benner’s claims are true, there’s “no good way to address it.”

“It’s tough, because when you read that stuff, it’s allegations. You don’t know how much is alleged and how much is fact,” said Baumbach.

I fully expect that these resignation rumors are nothing but plants from the powers that be to nudge the narrative in that direction. But then again, Flowers has been uncharacteristically silent since yesterday afternoon and through the night.

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  1. Jason330 says:

    “…these resignation rumors are nothing but plants… to nudge the narrative in that direction. …Flowers has been uncharacteristically silent since yesterday afternoon and through the night.”

    That’s a pretty tidy summary.

    One Q – does Shar V get to take credit if he does step down?

  2. Delaware Dem says:

    Live on WDEL right now.

  3. Jason330 says:

    Stupid online feed is playing a long commercial break

  4. Jason330 says:

    Cowboys fan. There’s the problem

  5. cassandra m says:

    He went to that game she bought the tickets for.

  6. cassandra m says:

    Warning signs? Chip spent alot of energy defending Benner up until the day he announced she was gone.

  7. Delaware Dem says:

    “This could be my last press conference”

  8. cassandra m says:

    You are NOT a victim here, Chip.

  9. Jason330 says:

    What a load of crap

  10. Jason330 says:

    Moving to Massachusetts where they don’t have newspapers or blogs

  11. pandora says:

    He will serve out the remainder of his term and then he’s moving in Massachusetts.

  12. Geezer says:

    @DD: Has Valenzuela said that’s why she’s running against Simpler?

  13. cassandra m says:

    No kidding.

    But apparently the NJ has the story that he was — in fact — at that game she charged the tickets for.

    A side note to every DL reader who sent me this information (but no pictures!) — you were right!

  14. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Class act to the end.

    This was, yet again, a Flower’s clinic on how not to do it.

    Good riddance and good luck.

  15. Jason330 says:

    This is pure Sophocles…

  16. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Thought it was Simpler who suggested that Flowers resign/withdraw and NOT Sher? Am I wrong?

  17. Jason330 says:


  18. Delaware Dem says:

    ATIAM: In their debate this week, Sher was the first to suggest it, and then Ken Simpler agreed. So technically, they both did.

  19. Delaware Dem says:

    Geezer: that is just scuttlebutt I have heard.

  20. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    I suspect that the person most sadden by this news is the Sheriff of Nuttingham himself – Sussex’s Sheriff Jeff C.

  21. So, Chipmunks, ya headed up there as well?

    Want to apologize for all the lies you spewed here? And all the lies Chip fed you that you accepted as absolute fact?

    I feel as close to calm as I possibly can.

  22. RunCV79 says:

    Actually, not that it matters, but it was Simpler who called for his resignation first. Blast email to media and supporters. Sher was shortly after.

    Did anyone listen to GOP debate on WDEL? This shouldn’t even be a contest. Simpler is head and shoulders above both Barney and Valenzuela. This really should show if a sane Republican can be elected statewide in Delaware again.

  23. Another Mike says:

    Didn’t he say during his announcement that Benner’s family had season tickets? If so, they would not have been purchased by credit card, unless her family takes MasterCard or Visa.

  24. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Just saw Velda Potter-Jones dancing/skipping down King Street singing “The Sun Will Come Out.”

  25. painesme says:

    I hope Daniello is on the phone with Elaine Manlove right now to get Chip off the ballot by any means necessary.

  26. cassandra m says:

    During the announcement, he spun out a tale of what Benner told him was the origin of the tickets. He is making the case that he had no idea at the time that the tickets were paid for on Benner’s state credit card. But as soon as he knew those tickets did show up on her card, he *DID* know.

  27. Jason330 says:

    “This really should show if a sane Republican can be elected statewide in Delaware again.”

    Can a sane Republican win a Republican primary? That’s the question.

  28. Aint's Taking it Any More says:


    For once, I agree with you.

  29. Geezer says:

    “I hope Daniello is on the phone with Elaine Manlove right now to get Chip off the ballot by any means necessary.”

    Really? Why? He hasn’t broken any laws that we know of. He hasn’t been indicted. He hasn’t put any of the state’s money at risk. You want him thrown off the ballot because he’s an ass-clown?

  30. cassandra m says:

    Didn’t he just withdraw from the race? That’s plenty of reason for him to be off of the ballot.

  31. Geezer says:

    Sure it is, but “by any means necessary”? Why?

  32. John Manifold says:

    And vindication for Celia Cohen’s reporting of sworn complaints from several women of physical abuse by Flowers.

    “Hey, he was acquitted.”

  33. Geezer says:

    How is it vindication? They were public records. How often are you going to link to that article? The Potter campaign released them to every news outlet I know of. Apparently her Delaware Way backers wanted it out there in the worst way.

  34. John Manifold says:

    He will be known as the Accidental State Treasurer.

  35. JibberJab says:

    Hey Geezer – Listen to this interview of Chip with Dan Gaffney back in February. He swears that he wasn’t at that football game. That he has receipts for where he was. And that any photo that comes up is photo shopped.

    And then go ahead and watch the video with Brenner where the photo is shown of him being at the game.

    He’s a liar. I don’t want him handling my money or being on a board that handles my money. He can stay on the ballot if he wants, he’s not gonna win anyway.

  36. painesme says:

    Geezer – What are you even talking about? He’s resigning. He’s moving to Massachusetts. If he stays on the ballot and by some absurd fluke of turnout (or Republican meddling) he wins, then that office is gone for Democrats. It’s a low-probability event to say the least, but hey, so was Cantor losing, so was an all-Republican ballot in a deep blue district (CA-31), so was Mike Castle being beaten by Christine O’Donnell.

    Cover your bases. Don’t make unforced errors. Make sure you take care of the easy stuff. Avoid any possibility of major embarrassment. Pick up the easy win and just scrub him from the ballot.

  37. Geezer says:

    Sorry, but I’m not convinced we should spend any money redoing ballots just because his name is on it.

    JJ: I agree with your assessment, and with your reasoning. It doesn’t matter if his name appears on the ballot because he won’t win anyway. I assumed that when someone typed “by any means necessary,” that’s what he meant, and I think it’s an overreaction.

    For all the sturm und drang, Flowers didn’t do any real harm to the state. Making the state look bad is not a crime, and while he has been unmatched in his ability to achieve that end, he’s merely the most flagrant example of egotism and bad behavior in public office.

  38. Geezer says:

    @painesme: Your assumption that I would find it preferable to have a Democrat, any Democrat, in that office is a foolish one. I will be voting for Ken Simpler unless he does something to indicate that he’s a Tea Party sycophant.

  39. Old Sussex County Native says:

    “flagrant example of egotism” — isn’t Sheriff Christopher holder of that moniker?
    “bad behavior in public office” who cost the taxpayer more? Christopher and his seemingly never ending lawsuits to get more power, or Flowers and questionable expenses.

    I am not sure…

  40. Geezer says:

    @OSCN: No, I think Christopher is, sadly, a true believer in the nonsense he spouts.

  41. puck says:

    Does anybody remember our former treasurer Tom Carper? I wonder what happened to him after he was accused of violence against women.. whatever became of him anyway?

  42. Jason330 says:

    I think the person who tried to use that in a campaign ended up “jumping” off a bridge.

  43. cassandra_m says:

    I don’t think that Carper was caught in a photo, at a game charged to taxpayers, that he told people he did not go to. That’s called a LIE. I also don’t think that Carper was defending an employee who had said photo for months and months, and then decided that it was time to harass said employee who had this photo. On top of this, I don’t think that Carper spent months telling people that he did not go to said game (while defending the employee) only to be shown to be a liar when the photo finally shows up.

    Carper’s violence towards his wife is certainly despicable. I wish this would pave the way for someone more progressive in his office. Still, Carper did not spend months and months lying to the world about this in hopes that the picture would not turn up. Because the thing that you can’t get around now is that Chip was at that game, that he lied about those tickets and he spent a good deal of time squandering his political cred in an effort to make sure those photos did not see the light of day.

  44. Geezer says:

    I might be remembering incorrectly, but as I recall Carper for years wouldn’t acknowledge he struck his first wife until the document was produced by the Rzewnicki campaign.

  45. puck says:

    I understand the document was handed out by a fringe pro-lifer not associated with the campaign and Rzewnicki denied involvement. The thing to note here is that the accusation resulted in public revulsion – against Rzewnicki. Go figure.

  46. Don’t know if it’s even feasible to have his name removed. Aren’t people already filling out absentee ballots?

    Maybe they can just put a ‘Withdrawn’ by his name.

    Republicans can’t cross over in this state unless they already changed their registration, so that’s not an issue.

    Maybe I’m just paranoid, but I don’t think Valenzuela is out of it. Lotsa primary action in Sussex (ya gotta figure that Christopher supporters are likely Cheryl voters) and even in Kent. Not so much in NCC, where I’d expect Simpler to be strongest. Other than the Miro primary, what else is there?

  47. puck says:

    If his name is on the ballot, what was the point of Flowers withdrawing? His withdrawal, plus his announcment of leaving town, sounds like a deal was struck.

  48. Seriously, Puck, Port-A-Potty should name a model after you.

    The sinister anti-Flowers forces had Benner’s kid shout something at Chip so that he would reply with a threat to shoot the kid b/c he ‘fucked with the wrong nigger’.

    It was all staged to get a rise out of Chip. It’s gotta be that. It CAN’T be that Chip is as self-destructive as he is narcissistic.

  49. Dave says:

    The fact that there is any concern about whether his name remains on the ballot is evidence that the real concern is voter ignorance and apathy. If I do not know who the viable candidates are and have at a least a modicum of knowledge of the issues, I would not vote because I would not have the ability to make an informed decision.

    While the ideal democracy is one in which individual knowledge and interest are high, the next best situation is one in which only those who have the knowledge and interest actually vote.

    If voters don’t care enough about the election to know that Flowers has withdrawn, don’t vote at all.

  50. puck says:

    If you were paying attention, you’ll notice I am not so much a Flowers supporter as I am a critic of his attackers. Just because it worked doesn’t mean it wasn’t an appalling smear campaign. Nobody is covered in glory after this feeding frenzy, and Barney doesn’t look any better than he did before.

    Flowers’s comments last year about Nixonian smears have proved all too prophetic. Flowers’s attackers knew he was going to win the primary unless he got a good ratf***king, and he finally got one, one that made use of an Overly Attached ex-girlfriend and her minor child as patsies. A while back I commented,

    Plan A to embarrass Flowers in the News Journal didn’t work. Plan B to embarrass him in the General Assembly didn’t work. Now Plan C is the primary.

    This week we found out what Plan D was. I suppose some guy in a trenchcoat met Jonathan Starkey in a parking garage and told him to “Follow the honey.” This was such a ridiculously ginned-up scandal that a photo of Flowers at a football game was droolingly covered as a smoking gun. And does anybody else think that Flowers leaving town sounds like a deal was struck?

    In my misguided youth I would occasionally split my ticket. But after Whitewater and the Clinton impeachment hearings, out of pure disgust I vowed never to vote for another Republican. Now I am at the same crossroads about Delaware Democrats and their treatment of Flowers.

    Given the vileness of the smear campaign, Flowers should run as an write-in just to spite his attackers and spoil their general election victory. Delaware does not deserve to see this behavior rewarded with the installation of Barney.

    Vote for Simpler.

  51. cassandra_m says:

    Flowers’s comments last year about Nixonian smears have proved all too prophetic.

    Except that it turns out that the critics were right — right down the line, including the photo of him at a Patriots game that he kept saying he did not attend.

    The problem with the critics of the critics is that there is no truth they’ll accept. And if Flowers was a Republican pulling these stunts, they’d be right in line with all of the criticism, rather than trying to excuse it all.

  52. Geezer says:

    “I understand the document was handed out by a fringe pro-lifer not associated with the campaign and Rzewnicki denied involvement.”

    She tried. But a reporter better than Celia Cohen tracked down the copy of the deposition, figured out whose copy they found. It belonged to the new husband of Carper’s ex-wife, and he was contacted by the Rzewnicki people. That’s why it rebounded against her.

    I’ve got that copy in my basement right now.

  53. Geezer says:

    “Other than the Miro primary, what else is there?”

    Mike Protack is in a primary against Janet Kirkpatrick again, and if anyone out there remembers her “yes” vote for Barley Mills Plaza, he might finally win a primary. It almost got me to change my registration.

  54. The CLNCC is sponsoring a debate between Janet Kilpatrick and Mike Protack at the Hockessin Fire Hall on September 2nd 7-9PM. We think GHADA will be joining us and will invite the candidates for Representative for the 22nd District which includes incumbent Joe Miro and Steve Newton.

  55. Brooke says:

    Well, off he goes.

    The only real question I have, personally, is why Megan Lallier would believe she’d get a happily ever after out of this, but Chip’s charm hasn’t ever really been bent on me. Perhaps if it had, I’d understand it differently.

  56. Anny says:

    Brooke, I don’t personally know either of them, so I can only speculate. I think because she, like so many women think they change a man. I wrote in another post that she knows what she is getting. She probably either doesn’t care or is naive or just blinded by love. He is her problem now.