John Charles Carney, Jr. (born May 20, 1956) is the U.S. Representative for Delaware's At-large congressional district. He is a member of the Democratic Party. He was the 24th Lieutenant Governor of Delaware from 2001 to 2009. Prior to that, he served as Delaware's Secretary of Finance; he also unsuccessfully sought the Democratic nomination for Governor of Delaware in 2008.
Carney was born in Wilmington, Delaware as the son of John C. and Ann Carney.
He was quarterback of the 1973 state championship St. Mark's High School football team, and earned All-Ivy League and Most Valuable Player honors in football at Dartmouth College, from which he graduated in 1978. He later coached freshmen football at the University of Delaware, while earning his master's degree in public administration.
Pre-congressional political career
Carney has served as Deputy Chief Administrative Officer of New Castle County and the Deputy Chief of Staff for Governor Tom Carper. For several years he was the Delaware State Secretary of Finance under Governor Carper, working to cut taxes and create jobs.
He was first elected Lieutenant Governor of Delaware in 2000 and served from January 16, 2001 until January 20, 2009.
As Lieutenant Governor Carney presided over the Delaware State Senate and chaired the Board of Pardons. He was chairman of the Delaware Health Care Commission, the Interagency Council on Adult Literacy, the Criminal Justice Council, the Center for Education Technology, and the Livable Delaware Advisory Council.
In 2002 he launched the education initiative "Models of Excellence in Education" to identify practices in schools that have raised student achievement. Carney was also selected by other Lieutenant Governors as chairman of the National Lieutenant Governors Association from July 2004 to July 2005.
Carney has long been an advocate for wellness issues in Delaware, sponsoring "BeHealthy Delaware" and "The Lt. Governor's Challenge" to encourage Delawareans to be more active and address the State's high rate of chronic diseases. He fought for Delaware's public smoking ban to improve health, cut cancer rates, and discourage teens from starting to smoke.
After completing his tenure as Lieutenant Governor in 2009, Carney served as president and chief operating officer of Transformative Technologies, which is investing in the DelaWind project, to bring offshore wind turbine construction to Delaware. He planned to step down in early 2010 to concentrate on his U.S.
Carney sought the Democratic nomination for the office of Governor in 2008, as incumbent Governor Ruth Ann Minner was constitutionally barred from seeking a third term. However, despite the backing of most of the party establishment, Carney lost the Democratic primary by fewer than two thousand votes in a close race to State Treasurer Jack Markell, who went on to win the general election.
U.S. House of Representatives
Carney was the Democratic Party nominee for Delaware's at-large seat in the United States House of Representatives in 2010. Carney faced Republican Glen Urquhart, Independent Party of Delaware Earl R. Lofland, Libertarian Brent A.
Wangen, and Blue Enigma Jeffrey Brown. The seat had been held since 1993 by Republican Michael Castle, who declined to seek re-election to the House in order to run for the U.S. Senate seat once held by Vice President Joe Biden. In the first week of October, Fairleigh Dickinson University's PublicMind Poll released the results of its opinion research, showing Carney with a 15 point advantage over Urquhart, 51%-36%; well ahead in New Castle County (56-32) but running even with Urquhart (43-43) in the downstate counties of Kent and Sussex. Days before the election, a second Fairleigh Dickinson poll showed Carney leading by 17 percentage points, 53% to 36% among likely voters.
Carney won the seat by 16 points, 57%-41%, and took office on January 3 of 2011.
His victory was one of the three seats gained by the Democrats in a year where they suffered a net loss of 63 seats to the Republicans.
Carney and his wife, Tracey, have two children, Sam and Jimmy.
October 11th, 2011