BETHEL – Oxford County Republicans will begin their 2008 campaign this weekend with a Lincoln Day dinner.

The event Saturday night at the Bethel Inn will feature House Republican leader Josh Tardy of Newport as principal speaker. John Frary, who is running for a seat in Congress, will also attend.

The Republicans want control of four county positions this year. Commissioner Steve Merrill of Norway will run for re-election, as will Judge of Probate Dana Hanley of Paris and Register of Probate Tom Winsor of Norway.

Although Commissioner David Duguay of Byron announced he will run as an unenrolled candidate, GOP committeeman Stan Howe of Bethel said he is likely to receive Republican support.

In the Legislature, Sen. David R. Hastings III of Fryeburg will be up for re-election, as will Reps. H. Sawin Millett Jr. of Waterford, Richard M. Sykes of Harrison, Ralph W. Sarty Jr. of Denmark and James M. Hamper of Oxford.

Norman Ferguson of Hanover, a former state senator, said Buckfield Town Manager Glen Holmes will run for the District 14 Senate seat. In the House, Maine Army National Guard Capt. Jarrod Crockett of Bethel, who served two tours of duty in Afghanistan, will run for District 91’s seat, while former Rep. Rob Cameron of Rumford will set his sights on District 92. Also running are Catherine Hardy of Dixfield for District 93 and Joe Robinson of Paris for District 94.

Ferguson said Rep. Roberta M. Muse of Fryeburg will not run this year. He said possible candidates for the nomination include Fryeburg Selectman David Knapp and former Rep. Harry True.

Joan Bryant-Deschenes, a former representative from Turner, said she plans to run again for District 96. Bryant-Deschenes said she believes Josh Morris of Turner will also seek the nomination.

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