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Blair takes 52nd District

November 06, 2002|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Craig Blair wanted to speak about his victory in the 52nd District House of Delegates Tuesday night, but he was more concerned with how fellow Republicans were doing.

Hearing that many were doing well, he grinned.

"I'm excited for the other candidates more than anything," Blair, 43, said, citing the others with whom he has campaigned, and with whom he hopes to work with in Charleston, W.Va.

Blair defeated Democratic challenger Craig Shibley for the new seat, created under a redistricting scenario. The final tally was 2,169 votes for Blair and 1,117 for Shibley, according to complete but unofficial results.

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The 52nd District covers parts of Berkeley County, including Marlowe, Falling Waters and Gerrardstown, and areas along U.S. 522 in Morgan County, but not Berkeley Springs.

After getting a call of congratulations on his cell phone at the courthouse Tuesday night, Blair talked to the caller for a moment.

"My friend, I think that West Virginia's going to change just a bit tonight," he said.

Blair's first day in the capital will be a learning experience, he said.

"(I'll) sit back, watch, listen and learn. I'll be a freshman. I've got a lot to learn and to understand," he said. "The work's just begun. This was the easy part."

He said he opposes new gun control laws; favors capital punishment, especially for those convicted of murder; and hopes to stop telemarketers. Another priority, Blair said, is obtaining five county commissioners, rather than the current three.

A lifelong area resident, Blair graduated from Hedgesville High School and James Rumsey Technical Institute.

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