Heritage Scholar Analyzes Delaware’s Decline, Gets Governor’s Attention


Heritage Scholar Analyzes Delaware’s Decline, Gets Governor’s Attention

September 11th, 2020

Heritage Foundation visiting fellow Dr. Allen Guelzo

A recent commentary written by Heritage Foundation visiting fellow Allen Guelzo is getting some much-needed attention in the state of Delaware.

The op-ed highlights the various issues that plague America’s first state as a result of its total control by one party. Delaware is suffering from poor economic prospects, a loss of local college prestige, and an increase in small business closures.

Guelzo writes that Delaware is returning to “the medieval two-class society, divided now between a cadre of progressive technocrats and bureaucrats and a sea of service and marginalized workers, with little expectation of upward mobility.”

He argues that the blame falls squarely on the shoulders of elected officials in Dover, the state capital.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Guelzo writes, “Delaware’s small businesses were shut down by Gov. John Carney’s executive order on March 24, and with only one day’s notice. By April, permanent closures had shot up from 22% to 37%, with arts, entertainment, and recreation businesses, where 78% closed, hit hardest.”

Guelzo further calls out the governor by writing “when Carney finally convened a Pandemic Resurgence Advisory Committee on June 1 to deal with the second wave COVID-19 outbreak, its membership was top-heavy with state bureaucrats and corporate officers, and not a single farmer or small business owner.”

The commentary was reprinted by the New York Post and caught the attention of people in Delaware and around the country. And while many praised the article as an in-depth look on the dangers of one-party rule, local officials in Delaware did not take kindly to the commentary.

Carney referenced the article in an email circulated to supporters attacking The Heritage Foundation.

“Sorry to bother you during Labor Day weekend, but we had to share this news and ask for your help pushing back,” Carney wrote in his email. “President Trump’s supporters at the Heritage Foundation know he’s losing. ... Now they’re attacking our state in an attempt to score cheap political points.”

Guelzo stands by the article. And so does Angela Sailor, vice president of the Feulner Institute at Heritage Foundation.

“The response we received to Dr. Guelzo’s article shows the real impact The Heritage Foundation has on moving local leaders to make better policy,” Sailor said. “We will always strive to keep our elected officials accountable and point out when and where they can do better.”