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For Politicians, Delaware's Return Day Marks Chance to Come Together

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GEORGETOWN, Del.- Just two days after the 2018 campaign season came to a close with the general election, politicians from across Delaware came to Georgetown on Thursday to celebrate bi-partisanship during the every-other-year tradition of Sussex County Return Day.

The event includes a parade in which political candidates --- winners and losers --- walk or ride in horse drawn buggies or vehicles alongside each other to demonstrate a show of friendliness following an election.

"We are lucky here in Delaware that we actually have a day when we bring all of the winners and everyone who didn't win to signal the end of the political season," said State Treasurer Ken Simpler (R), who rode in a horse drawn carriage beside Democrat Colleen Davis, the candidate that felled him in Tuesday's general election.

The tradition dates back more than 200 years ago, when people and candidates would gather in Georgetown two days after an election to hear a town crier deliver the results of the election.

On Thursday, a similar reading of results took place, with the numbers from Sussex County elections being delivered to the crowd. It also featured a literal "burying of the hatchet" by leaders of Delaware political parties to symbolize the end of hostilities following the election.

"Former Rep. Trey Paradee --- a Kent County Democrat who was elected on Tuesday to the state Senate with a win over Camden Mayor Justin King --- walked alone on the parade route but said the event signals a time for politicians and people to come together.

"Hopefully we can all maintain this spirit of friendliness and cohesiveness and work together," he said.

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