DOVER — One candidate running to be Dover’s next mayor was missing at Wednesday night’s Candidates Forum at the Modern Maturity Center.
Carleton Carey Sr. said Thursday he was out of town on a business trip.
“I wish I would have been there, but I was out of town,” Mr. Carey said. “I just got back this afternoon (Thursday). I called beforehand and told them I was sorry I couldn’t make it. It was a trip I couldn’t get out of.”
Mayoral candidates Robin R. Christiansen, currently serving as mayor, and George J. Gaudioso participated in the question and answer session, sponsored by the sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Kent County, the American Association of University Women’s Dover Chapter and the Modern Maturity Center
The nine candidates running for council seats and the two mayoral candidates had one minute to answer questions presented by the audience.
Mr. Carey said it was important to be at the event, but believes residents know his views regarding issues raised at the event, due to various media coverage leading up to the forum.
“The event is very beneficial,” Mr. Carey said. “It’s important to go there, so people can hear what you have to say, but on the other hand you can always give me a call at any time.”
But Dover resident Thomas Dix said it would have been nice to hear from Mr. Carey during the forum.
“I would have liked to see what he had to say,” Mr. Dix said. “I was interested into hearing his views.”
The event was hosted by The League of Women Voters, which is a nonpartisan political organization that encourages informed and active participation of citizens in the government.
Ellen Wasfi, who posed as the moderator during Wednesday forum, said formal letters of invitations were sent to all the candidates’ weeks before the event.
Then follow-up calls were made to see if they would be in attendance.
Mr. Carey originally said he would attend, but then called about a week and half ago, stating that something had come up, said committee member Mary Kay Eggers.
“On March 22nd is when I called everyone to get their addresses,” Ms. Eggers said. “He said he was coming then. We sent the letter out and about a week and half ago he called and said that something had come up and he wasn’t going to be able to make it.
“He thought it was a wonderful event,” she said, but he didn’t elaborate on why he wouldn’t be there. “All he said was that he wasn’t going to be able to make it.”
Mr. Carey still is campaigning.
“Everything has been going great,” he said. “I have signs up and I’ve been knocking on doors, getting out to the people.”
Balloting will be held from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Dover Elks Lodge at 200 Saulsbury Road.