24 Feb 2014

Northern Marianas gubernatorial race gets crowded

7:35 pm on 24 February 2014

The Northern Marianas is headed for a crowded gubernatorial race as at least three challengers to Governor Eloy Inos are eyeing the top post.

A former governor, Juan Babauta, the former Commonwealth Ports Authority executive director Edward Deleon Guerrero, and the former House speaker Heinz Hofschneider have confirmed their intention to run.

Mr Babauta asked the Republican party on Friday for an "open primary," while Mr Guerrero confirmed during Saturday's Democratic Party reorganisation that he wants to run for governor, even as the Hofschneider camp maintains a low-key campaign at this time.

If the three challengers pursue their intentions, it could be harder for any of the candidates to obtain the necessary 50-percent share of the votes in the November poll.

If none of them do, the Northern Marianas would then see another runoff election.

While Mr Hofschneider's camp hasn't announced his candidacy, some have already held meetings to pledge their support to him.