Wright tops Menger in HD 54
Embattled Republican Jared Wright won the seat to represent House District 54 Tuesday night.
The 29-year-old who faced calls for his ouster from members of his own party because of numerous scandals won 58 percent of the vote, defeating Tim Menger, the Libertarian Party candidate who didn’t expect to be much of a challenger in the race.
Wright ended up earning 16,799 votes to Menger’s 12,088.
Still, Menger said he was disappointed at the outcome, but not surprised.
“At least I won something tonight,” the Unaweep Canyon resident said at his election night event held at Orchard Mesa Lanes. “I won my bowling game with a score of 187, and I haven’t bowled in years.”
Wright declined to speak with a reporter Tuesday night.
Nearly from the start, Wright’s campaign was turned upside down when he resigned his position with the Fruita Police Department. At the time, he said he wanted to focus on the race to replace Rep. Laura Bradford, R-Collbran.
But later it was discovered that wasn’t true.
An internal affairs investigation of Wright showed that he was repeatedly late for work but claiming to be on the job. That’s when Fruita Police Chief Mark Angelo offered Wright a chance to resign, saying he would terminate him if he didn’t.
A few weeks later, news broke that Wright had filed for bankruptcy a year ago, owing credit card companies, lenders and debt collectors more than $74,000.
Wright, however, told Republican Party officials the bankruptcy was because of bad business investments and “the Obama economy,” but the filing shows it was for personal debts for purchases such as cars, jewelry and a $1,000-a-year tanning salon membership.
Wright joined other Republicans at its campaign-night event held at Two Rivers Convention Center.
But unlike other Republicans at the event, such as state Rep. Ray Scott and U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, Wright didn’t address the crowd.