Newly elected Southampton Republican Party Chairman William C. Wright recently shared his thoughts on his mission as Chairman, the upcoming Town election and his party’s candidates. He even gave his views on Linda Kabot’s entrance into the race for Southampton Town Supervisor as a write-in candidate. Finally, Wright discussed his vision for the future of the Southampton Republican Party.
Wright, who is 32 years old, was unanimously elected by the Southampton Town Republican Committee to replace Ernest Wruck who stepped down after two years to concentrate on his law practice. Wright is a graduate of Southampton High School and a lifelong resident of the Town of Southampton. He graduated from Marist College in Poughkeepsie and currently lives in East Quogue with his family. He is a senior loan office and branch manager at Americana Mortgage Group on Main Street in Southampton Village.
As the newly elected chairman (less than a month ago), Wright chose his words carefully about what he perceives his mission to be. He said, “The mission is to grow and rejuvenate the party by bridging the gap between the younger generation (30-somethings) and longstanding party supporters.” He wants to connect with the new younger voters, what he called the “forgotten generation,” bringing them “into the mix.” When asked about the importance of the 2012 election for the Town of Southampton, Wright explained, “Every town election is important. It’s the opportunity for every voting citizen to have their voice heard, especially in these tough economic times.” He added that it is important as party chairman to help get the voices of the party heard and to then get out the vote.
I asked him about his candidates and he proudly replied, “For this year’s 2012 election we have a great team of candidates who understand the importance of working together to achieve the common goal of pulling us out of these difficult economic times. Christine Preston Scalera and Bill Hughes are running for Town Board, Edward D. Burke, Sr. for Town Justice, Theresa Kiernan for Tax Receiver and Cornelius Kelly for Legislator. Our three candidates for Trustee are Jon Semlear, Edward Warner Jr. and Scott Horowitz.” Wright understands that control of the Town Board hangs in the balance of this election but feels confident that the distinguished candidates the Republican Party has nominated are up to the tough job ahead.
When I asked if the Southampton Republican Party was going to assist Linda Kabot in her efforts as write-in candidate, or offer full-fledged support, Wright replied, “The Republican committee has chosen not to field a candidate for Supervisor in this election. The Republican Party respects the process that allows any citizen the right to become a write-in candidate.”
Wright went on to explain that, back in the spring, all those who wanted to be Southampton Republican candidates for Supervisor were invited to be screened by the party and Kabot chose not to appear. He said he respects Kabot and wishes her “the best of luck,” saying running as an official candidate is “tough enough,” but repeated she has a legal right to attempt the write-in campaign.
What about the future of the Republican Party beyond the 2012 elections? Wright said that although the Republicans hold an edge in voter registration it is still important to pay attention to registration. Shining the bright light of the future on this effort is important, he added, especially to create a new younger Republican wing of the “great Southampton Republican Party.”
To prove this point Wright said, “Our vision for the Republican Party is to rebuild and grow, put people in office who will keep spending and taxes under control, work closely with our local businesses and tax-paying citizens.”