House Speaker Shap Smith to Seek Reelection | Off Message
Pin It

Thursday, June 12, 2014

House Speaker Shap Smith to Seek Reelection

Posted By on Thu, Jun 12, 2014 at 10:01 AM

click to enlarge shap.smith.3.12.14.jpg
Updated Thursday, June 12, at 10:46 a.m.

For weeks, House Speaker Shap Smith (D-Morristown) has expressed ambivalence over whether to seek a seventh term in the Vermont House. Citing competing family and professional obligations, Smith said it might be time to pass the gavel to a new leader.

But on Thursday morning, just hours before nominating petitions were due, Smith filed for reelection at the Morristown municipal offices, according to town clerk Mary Ann Wilson. 

“In the end, I realized I really like the job and I thought that there was work left to be done on education, education finance, health care and health care finance,” Smith told Seven Days. “And I really wanted to finish that work, if my constituents give me the opportunity.”

Despite his public hemming and hawing, Smith said he still feels a passion to serve.

“I wanted to make sure that I was going to be all in, and I was not willing to do the job unless I was going to be all in,” Smith said.

Throughout his speakership, Democrats have enjoyed overwhelming majorities in both the House and Senate. This fall, Republican leaders hope to focus on making gains in the legislature, but Smith said he feels cautiously optimistic about his party’s chances.

“I think we have a good slate of candidates,” he said. “I think it’s always hard to hold as strong a majority as we have over a number of election cycles, and I take seriously that the Republicans are going to target House and Senate races. I feel good about the candidates we have, but I think it’s going to be a tough election cycle.”

An attorney with the Burlington law firm Dinse, Knapp & McAndrew, Smith first won election to the House in 2002 and assumed the speakership in 2009. 

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

Pin It

Did you appreciate this story?

Show us your ❤️ by becoming a Seven Days Super Reader.

About The Author

Paul Heintz

Paul Heintz

Paul Heintz is a staff writer and political editor for Seven Days. He wrote the "Fair Game" political column from May 2012 through December 2016.


Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Keep commenting classy! Read our guidelines...

Note: Comments are limited to 300 words.

Latest in Off Message

Social Club

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2018 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401
Website powered by Foundation