3 Nov 2010

CNMI re-elects Sablan to US Congress

1:58 pm on 3 November 2010

The incumbent Gregorio Sablan has been returned as the Northern Marianas non-voting delegate to the US Congress.

Mr Sablan won in a landslide with 4,902 votes, ahead of his closest rival, Joseph Camacho of the Covenant Party, with 2,744 votes.

The resurgence of the Republican Party nationally has failed to translate into support for the former governor, Juan Babauta, who came in third, while Jesse Borja from the Democratic Party finished fourth.

Our correspondent Mark Rabago says the size of Mr Sablan's victory was surprising, although he was favoured to win as the incumbent.

He says Mr Sablan has already signalled his intentions

"Right off the bat he already said that when he wins a second term he will continue to focus on education, health and other policy issues that affect the Commonwealth. He also promised to improve the island's working relationship with the US Department of Homeland Security."

Mark Rabago says there appears to have been a low voter turnout for the election of about 60 percent.