By J. PATRICK PEPPER
DEARBORN — Suzanne Sareini and George Darany said last week they would stick to the issues as they vie to become 15th District state representative, for the most part, at least.
Darany’s win as a Democrat last week in the state primary elections set the stage for a November showdown with Sareini, who faced no primary challenger in her bid as a Republican. The current Dearborn City Council members are less than a year removed from winning re-election to that body, and this race will mark the first time either has run for a partisan office.
And while presumably it would open the door for partisan potshots at one another, neither jumped at the opportunity in separate interviews Thursday.
“I think people are tired of the partisan bickering,” Sareini said. “I can tell you I am.”
“I know that we will do our best to stick to what’s important, and that’s what’s best for the city of Dearborn,” he said.
Still, both candidates added caveats to their conciliatory statements.
“But voters will have a clear choice in November,” Sareini went on to say. “Do they want big government and high taxes or getting rid of all the restrictions and red tape that are keeping our businesses closed?”
For his part, Darany said, “Yeah, sure, we will be making our points more aggressively now. We’re going after the same thing, and we do differ a lot on a lot of important issues.”
The ideological schism between the two surely will be delineated as the campaign wears on, but it will represent a marked departure from their time as fellow council members and prospective state rep candidates. Sareini and Darany both acknowledged having a collegial, often friendly relationship working together on the council.
And in the months leading up to the primary – before they were in direct competition – it was common to see the candidates making appearances together at public events and civic gatherings. But with the stakes now clear and the prize singular, it seems collegiality will take a back seat to competition.
“We are going to do whatever we think will help us get elected to represent the people of Dearborn, I can say that for sure” Darany said.